In another sad chapter in a long story of white men escaping punishment for the killing of black youth, the jury in the Jordan Davis case could not come to an agreement on a murder charge. For those who haven’t been following the case, Steven Hsieh at The Nation gives an overview:
In November 2012, Dunn, who is white, opened fire at an SUV carrying four black teenagers, including Davis. He continued to fire at the vehicle as it fled the scene. Three of ten bullets hit Davis, puncturing his diaphragm, liver, lungs and aorta, according to a medical examiner who testified in court this week. The teen was later pronounced dead at a local hospital.
Dunn drove back to his hotel with his fiancée, where he ordered pizza, fixed a couple rum and cokes and walked his dog. He did not call the police. The next day, he was arrested at his home in Jacksonville.
Dunn’s fiancee reported that Dunn said he “hates that thug music” during the incident. If that’s too ambiguous for you, his letters from jail should clear up any question about the racist underpinnings of his actions:
“This jail is full of blacks and they all act like thugs.… This may sound a bit radical, but if more people would arm themselves and kill these fucking idiots when they’re threatening you, eventually they may take the hint and change their behavior.”
Dunn was found guilty of three counts of attempted murder and shooting a firearm. The case has received national attention partly because Dunn’s lawyers invoked the problematic Stand Your Ground defense:
Dunn’s lawyer Cory Strolla cited Florida’s Stand Your Ground law in his closing argument, “His honor will further tell you that If Michael Dunn was in a public place where he had a legal right to be, he had no duty to retreat and had the right to stand his ground and meet force with force, including deadly force.” As in the George Zimmerman trial, the Stand Your Ground law was included in the jury instructions.
Continue reading “Justice for Jordan Davis”