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Supreme Court Denies New Trial For Dearborn Heights Shooter

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The Michigan Supreme Court has said “no” to a new trial for a man convicted of manslaughter for shooting a woman through a screen door early in the morning.

Theodore Wafer wanted a new trial where the jury would be instructed on his rights under Michigan’s “stand-your-ground” law. It allows people to shoot intruders with no duty to retreat if that’s possible.

The jury found that Wafer fired without determining whether 19-year-old Renisha McBride posed a threat. She had been involved in a car accident earlier and may have been seeking assistance. Wafer said pounding on his front and side doors at 4:30 AM of his home in Dearborn Heights made him believe someone was trying to break in to his house.

Supreme Court Chief Justice Stephen Markman dissented, saying he would order a new trial.

Rick Pluta is Senior Capitol Correspondent for the Michigan Public Radio Network. He has been covering Michigan’s Capitol, government, and politics since 1987. His journalism background includes stints with UPI, The Elizabeth (NJ) Daily Journal, The (Pontiac, MI) Oakland Press, and WJR. He is also a lifelong public radio listener.
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