On July 19, 48-year-old Michael Drejka shot unarmed, 28-year-old Markeis McGlockton in front of his girlfriend and 5-year-old son in Flordia. Over a year later, Dreika has been found guilty of manslaughter.
The Associated Press reports, “The jury of five men and a woman deliberated for more than six hours Friday before convicting Michael Drejka.” He is facing up to 30 years in prison.
The killer was trying to use the state’s controversial “Stand Your Ground law” to defend the July 19 homicide in Clearwater. The AP says the jury was “having difficulties understanding the law. [Judge Joseph] Bulone reread them the lengthy statute, which generally says Drejka could shoot McGlockton if a reasonable person under the same circumstances would believe he is in imminent danger of death or great bodily injury.”
See video of him being found guilty below:
On July 19, McGlockton parked in a handicap spot at a Clearwater convenience store while his son and girlfriend, Britany Jacobs, waited in the car. Drejka approached the car, looking for a handicapped permit on the vehicle before confronting Jacobs. They allegedly began yelling at each other before surveillance video showed McGlockton walking out of the store and pushing Drejka to the ground. McGlockton took a few steps back before Drejka pulled out a gun and shot him in the chest — in front of his five-year-old son. McGlockton could be seen staggering back into the store before collapsing.
CNN.com reports, originally, Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri did not arrest Drejka, citing the “stand your ground law.”
NBC News reported the release of hundreds of pages of sheriff’s documents surrounding the shooting, including some witness accounts. Bystander Robert Castelly reportedly claimed that immediately following the shooting, Drejka muttered, “‘I just shot someone. What’d you think was gonna happen? He shouldn’t have ran up on me.'”
According to the transcript from a detective, another witness said after the shooting, “His demeanor was, you know, uh, like, proud.”
According to the AP, Drejka told detectives he has a “pet peeve” about illegal parking in handicapped spaces.
Our thoughts are with Markeis McGlockton’s family and friends.