BREAKING: Greg Abbott vows to pardon Sgt. Daniel Perry after murder conviction in death of BLM rioter

"I am working as swiftly as Texas law allows regarding the pardon of Sgt. Perry."

Joshua Young North Carolina

On Saturday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott said he was working to pardon Daniel Perry, the  former Army sergeant found guilty of murder on Friday for the shooting of Garrett Foster during a 2020 Black Lives Matter protest.

"I am working as swiftly as Texas law allows regarding the pardon of Sgt. Perry," Abbott said and clarified in a statement that in Texas he is limited to only grant a pardon after receiving a recommendation from the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles. Abbott said he had requested that the Board "expedite its review" and pass on their recommendation.

Perry was driving Uber at the time and encountered an armed BLM group that had taken over the streets of Austin, Texas during a riot on July 25, 2020. 

Perry was found guilty of one count of murder and not guilty of one count of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. 

Austin Police Department’s description of the incident stated that a car turned onto Congress Avenue near 4th Street at 9:51 pm and then protestors who were marching in the area surrounded the car.

Foster was part of the group and armed with a rifle and Perry’s defense team said during opening statements on March 28 that Perry had to defend himself when he was swarmed by the group.

"I made a wrong turn, a guy pointed a freakin weapon at me and I panicked. I don’t know what to do. I’m just an Uber driver. I made a wrong turn; I’ve never had to shoot someone before. They started shooting back at me, and I got out of the area," Perry told a 911 operator that night.

Former Austin Police Chief Brian Manley said that the driver, who was later identified as Perry, fired five shots from inside of his vehicle, hitting Foster. Foster did not fire a shot. Another member of the group fired three shots at the vehicle, but did not hit anyone.

Both Perry and the other shooter were detained following the incident.

The defense said that Perry did everything he could to avoid the protestors as he dropped off one of his riders downtown, and that he was fully cooperative with police, giving over his phone and providing social media passwords immediately without a warrant.

State prosecutors said that Foster was a frequent BLM protester and had been out protesting nearly every day that summer, which saw riots spread across the country.

The state argued that Perry had sped into the crowd of protestors, but an expert witness for the defense called the allegation into question, using data and science to track the speed of the car which he said was slowing down when he approached the crowd.

This story is breaking and will be updated.

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