BREAKING: Man who killed McBride charged with second-degree murder

The Detroit News reports:

A Dearborn Heights man was charged Friday with second-degree murder, manslaughter and possession of a firearm in a felony in the shooting death of 19-year-old Detroiter Renisha McBride.

Homeowner Theodore Wafer, 54, faces arraignment Friday afternoon in the charges, Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy announced.

McBride was fatally shot in the face early Nov. 2 by Wafer,whose lawyer said was “justified” in firing at McBride. About two and a half hours earlier before the shooting at the home in the 16800 block of Outer Drive, McBride crashed into a parked car a mile away on Brammell and Warren in Detroit.

Worthy said Friday that the evidence shows Wafer shot McBride through a locked screen door. He is not in custody and will be asked to turn himself in to authorities, the prosecutor said.

“We have issued these charges because we believe the evidence will show that self defense was not warranted,” Worthy s[a]id.

We’ll keep you updated as the charges move forward. As we know too well from George Zimmerman’s acquittal — and the countless other times American juries have sided with those who kill black people — today’s news doesn’t ensure justice for Renisha. But it’s one step in that direction.

New Haven, CT

Alexandra Brodsky is an editor at Feministing.com, student at Yale Law School, and founding co-director of Know Your IX, a national legal education campaign against campus gender-based violence. Alexandra has written for publications including the New York Times, the Atlantic, the Guardian, and the Nation, and she has spoken about violence against women and reproductive justice on MSNBC, ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, FOX, and NPR. Through Know Your IX, she has organized with students across the country to build campuses free from discrimination and violence, developed federal policy on Title IX enforcement, and has testified at the Senate. At Yale Law, Alexandra focuses on antidiscrimination law and is a member of the Veterans Legal Services Clinic. Alexandra is committed to developing and strengthening responses to gender-based violence outside the criminal justice system through writing, organizing, and the law. Keep an eye out for The Feminist Utopia Project, co-edited by Alexandra and forthcoming from the Feminist Press (2015).

Alexandra Brodsky is an editor at Feministing.com, student at Yale Law School, and founding co-director of Know Your IX.

Read more about Alexandra

Join the Conversation

  • http://feministing.com/members/marlene/ Marlene

    Interestingly, the current narrative being put forth is that the shot was fired accidentally. I have read elsewhere that Wafer initially claimed this, but when he hired a lawyer that statement was changed to a claim of justifiable self-defense. Now the accident claim is back.

    Sounds like the attorney has a pretty solid grasp of the extent to which self-defense claims by white shooters against black victims can get a relatively easy win. I have no idea what changed the situation. (I assume public pressure changed things on the police/DA side, but not Wafer’s attorney)

    Fingers crossed that this case doesn’t turn in to a nightmare of victim blaming, but my hopes aren’t very high in that regard.