A Florida jury has found Michael Dunn guilty in what has been dubbed the “loud-music trial” regarding the death of teen Jordan Davis. This was the second trial on the matter after the first jury in February couldn’t agree on the murder charge related to Davis’ death. Now Dunn has been found guilty of first-degree murder.
As CNN notes, the trial is related to Michael Dunn shooting at passengers in a vehicle while he and his then-fiancee were at a convenience store in November of 2012. The shooting led to the death of Jordan Davis. Dunn claimed that he had feared for his life and believed Davis had a weapon. He had also indicated that he had been annoyed by loud music coming from the vehicle Davis and friends were in at the time and an argument broke out.
The jury in the first trial found Dunn guilty of four charges, but they were hung on the murder charge. Based on the four initial guilty verdicts, Dunn faces at least 60 years in prison. Prosecutors moved forward on a retrial of the first-degree murder charge, which would require the jury believing that the 47-year-old had premeditated murdering Jordan Davis.
The jury could have considered second-degree murder instead, which would have indicated they believed Dunn killed Davis via a depraved or criminal act. Manslaughter was also an option for the jury in terms of a guilty verdict in this trial. The jury started deliberating around 10 a.m. ET on Wednesday. As NBC News notes, a verdict in the Michael Dunn trial was reached after less than six hours of deliberations.
Dunn fired 10 shots into the Dodge Durango that contained Davis and his friends, and Jordan was hit three times. One of the bullets went through his aorta, lung and liver. Dunn was convicted of three counts of attempted second-degree murder and one count of shooting into a vehicle. The three second-degree murder counts were for the three friends in the SUV with Davis that day.
The Michael Dunn case is one that has made many national headlines over the past months, especially in relation to concerns over Florida’s self-defense laws and racial profiling after the Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman incident. Dunn is white while Davis was black.
While the Michael Dunn guilty verdict won’t resolve concerns many have over race relations and gun violence in this country, the news that he is being held accountable for the death of Jordan Davis is a bit of solace for some who have been following the case.
[Image via the New York Post]