A Jacksonville, Florida, jury convicted Michael Dunn of first-degree murder in the 2012 shooting of an unarmed African-American teenager Jordan Davis during a dispute over loud rap music.
The news comes almost five months after Dunn was convicted of three counts of attempted murder and weapons charges.
National media – often erroneously – has drawn comparisons between Davis’ murder and the high-profile Trayvon Martin shooting case in which George Zimmerman, a Florida neighborhood watch coordinator, killed an unarmed black teenager because he “looked suspicious.”
While the African-American community of the Sunshine State was disappointed after Zimmerman was acquitted of second-degree murder and of manslaughter charges last July, Dunn’s verdict has brought some sense of relief and justice.
YES!!! Michael Dunn was just found GUILTY of the First Degree Murder of Jordan Davis. This young man is gone, but justice is served.— Shaun King (@ShaunKing) October 1, 2014
Prior to the verdict, there was wide speculation if Dunn – like Zimmerman – could get away with the first-degree murder charge using Florida’s controversial Stand Your Ground law. It grants immunity from criminal and civil charges to anyone who uses lethal force, if they reasonably fear serious bodily harm or death.
However, a jury – comprising seven white men, three white women, one black man and one black woman – allayed all fears concerning Dunn’s acquittal on Oct. 1.
The judgment was also well-received in Ferguson, Missouri, where people have been protesting the cop-killing of black teen Michael Brown. Like Martin and Davis before him, Brown was unarmed at the time of his killing.
It's a wrap for Michael Dunn! He's been found guilty!!! But justice for all has yet to come. We still have people in need in #Ferguson— Mr. M (@AnansiTheGriot) October 1, 2014
michaeldunn guilty of 1st degree murder of jordandavis. now#ferguson pd, pls arrest darrenwilson to help calm racial tension in america.— \ˈan-dər-sən\ (@TheReelAnderson) October 1, 2014
Yes!! Michael Dunn found guilty of murder!! Finally, justice has been served. Next up Darren Wilson #Ferguson— 4ever_Young (@4everyoung_50) October 1, 2014
Here’s how Davis’ parents reacted to the sentencing (via NBC News):