A Florida jury convicted a white gunman of killing an unarmed black father during an argument over a parking space. Jurors deliberated for more than six hours before finding Michael Drejka guilty of manslaughter in the July 2018 shooting death of Markeis McGlockton.
McGlockton, 28, was gunned down in front of his 5-year-old son in the parking lot of a Circle K gas station. The father of three was coming to his girlfriend’s defense after she was confronted by Drejka for parking in a handicap space while McGlockton ran into the store. Drejka, who alleged self-defense, claimed that he opened fire after McGlockton took “one step” towards him and shoved him. Drejka attempted to use Florida’s Stand Your Ground law to justify the fatal shooting, and saw no fault in his actions.
“I followed the law the way I thought the law was supposed to be followed. I cleared every hurdle that the law had to put in front of me,” he told a local news station last year.
Prosecutors argued that Drejka provoked the confrontation and video surveillance confirmed that McGlockton was backing away from Drejka. The state’s self-defense argument doesn’t apply if the shooter caused the altercation.
Drejka, who faces up to 30 years in prison, had no reaction to the verdict, CBS News reports. He remains held without bond and is scheduled to be sentenced on Oct. 10.