In a silent courtroom, a jury convicted a Detroit-area homeowner of second-degree murder and manslaughter Thursday in the killing of an unarmed woman on his porch last year, rejecting the claim that he acted in self-defense, the Associated Press reports.
Theodore Wafer, 55, shot 19-year-old Renisha McBride through a screen door at his Dearborn Heights house on Nov. 2 around 4:30 a.m., just hours after she crashed her car about a half mile away, because, he said, he felt threatened by the stranger at his door. Wafer claimed he thought there were multiple people trying enter his house. However, prosecutors speculate that McBride was likely looking for help.
McBride reportedly spent the night before the incident partying. Her blood alcohol content was twice the legal limit at the time of her death.
The jury convicted Wafer after deliberating for eight hours over a two-day period. The trial kicked off at near the end of July.
“He was a cold-blooded killer. … People have a right to bear arms, but you need to do it with reason and responsibility,” McBride’s father, Walter Simmons, told reporters.
The newspaper reports that Wafer had been free on bond, but was ordered to jail to await his sentence. He faces up to life in prison on Aug. 21, but it’s likely his punishment will be much shorter.