Theodore Paul Wafer, 54, has been charged in the murder of 19-year-old Renisha McBride, the Michigan Wayne County Prosecutors office announced today.
According to the Huffington Post, Wafer allegedly shot McBride in the face during the early hours of November 2nd in Dearborn Heights, Michigan and now faces charges of second-degree murder, manslaughter, and a related gun charge. He faces a maximum sentence of life in prison and is expected to be arraigned this Friday afternoon.
“We obviously do not feel that the evidence in this case reveals that the defendant acted in a lawful self defense.” said prosecutor Kym Worthy.
“Under Michigan law, there is no duty to retreat in your own home, however, someone who claims self defense must honestly and reasonably believe that he is in imminent danger of either losing his life or suffering great bodily harm,” Worthy explained in a statement. “This ‘reasonable belief’ is not measured subjectively, by the standards of the individuals in question, but objectively, by the standards of a reasonable person.”
Although there is no official explanation of McBride activities between the time of the accident and her death, there are many speculations about what may have happened. The victim’s family believes that her phone was dead when she went to go look for help. Wafer’s attorney, Cheryl Carpenter maintains that her client believed that someone was trying to get into his home.
The Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office ruled McBride’s death a homicide. the autopsy showed that she was shot in the face and not at close range. A toxicology report released Thursday revealed that McBride had an alcohol blood content of almost .22. She also tested positive for marijuana, although a second report is recommended to confirm that.
Despite these findings, the family’s attorney Gerald Thurswell, told the Associated Press that the report isn’t relevant.
McBride’s death is now apart of the country’s discussion about gun-control, race-relations and self-defense, sparked by other recent shootings of young black Americans such as Jonathan Ferrel of North Carolina, Jordan Davis of Jacksonville, Florida and Trayon Martin of Sanford, Florida.
Civil rights and community leaders have criticized the slow response to the shooting and called for justice for Renisha McBride.
The Rev. Al Sharpton said “We are in prayer for the family of Renisha McBride, but we are alos urgently calling for justice for the loss of this daughter, sister, and friend.”
Renisha McBride’s family continues to be in our thoughts and prayers as the case continues to unfold.