After eight hours of deliberations, a Michigan jury has found Theodore Wafer guilty of second-degree murder, manslaughter and felony use of a firearm after fatally shooting Renisha McBride.
On the morning of November 2, 2013, 19-year-old McBride went to Wafer’s house seeking help after her car crashed nearby. Wafer reacted by shooting the unarmed woman in the face with his shotgun.
Throughout the trial, Wafer maintained that he shot McBride in self-defense. He recounted being woken up by an "unbelievable" pounding on his doors and fearing for his life before firing through his screen door and killing McBride. Prosecutor Patrick Muscat argued that what Wafer did was both unnecessary and horrific, contending that Wafer took the law into his own hands instead of calling the police. Defense attorney Cheryl Carpenter urged the jury to put themselves in his shoes, "in the heat of the moment our instincts are to survive," she said.
In a press conference immediately following the verdict, Renisha McBride’s mother, Monica, thanked the jury and admitted that she was "astonished” by the verdict. Of her daughter, Monica went on to say, “Her life mattered.”
Wafer will be sentenced on Aug. 21.