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Man says not guilty of loud music shooting

Dec. 18, 2012 at 3:18 PM   |   Comments

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Dec. 18 (UPI) -- A Florida man accused of fatally shooting a teenager sitting in a vehicle during a dispute over loud music has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder.

In total, Michael David Dunn, 45, pleaded not guilty Monday to charges of first-degree murder, three counts of attempted murder and shooting deadly missiles following a Nov. 23 dispute the Florida Times Union in Jacksonville reported.

Dunn was parked alongside a sport utility vehicle with four occupants, including Jordan Davis, 17. Dunn complained of the loud music and an argument ensued. Dunn, who has a concealed carry permit in Florida, allegedly fired 10 shots at the SUV, striking and killing Davis.

Dunn's lawyer said his client was acting in self-defense. A previous lawyer representing Dunn said one of the SUV's occupants displayed a shotgun but later threw it away. Police couldn't verify that claim and never recovered a shotgun near the scene. Davis family attorney John Phillips noted the driver of the SUV initially sped away when Dunn started firing -- an illogical response if they were the armed aggressors.

The case may turn into another high-profile instance of Florida's controversial "Stand Your Ground" law. Dunn's attorney said he hadn't yet determined whether it would be a viable defense but said if it were he would pursue it vigorously.

Davis' parents confronted a silent Dunn in Duval County Court Monday for the first time.

"I felt like a father whose son is snatched away from him, that was killed so callously as this guy did," said Ron Davis, Jordan's father. "I wanted him to look over at me. I wanted him to understand that he has taken my life away."

His mother, Lucia McBath, took pity on Dunn.

"I felt so sorry for him. ... He has to bear the burden for the rest of his life, not only for Jordan but for every life affected by this," she said.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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