Autopsy: No evidence Detroit homeowner shot woman at close range

Nov. 12, 2013 at 10:07 AM
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DETROIT, Nov. 12 (UPI) -- An autopsy has confirmed a 19-year-old Detroit woman was shot in the face but found no evidence the weapon was fired from close range, officials say.

A report by the Wayne County Medical Examiner's office in the death of Renisha McBride found "no evidence of close range discharge of a firearm," The Detroit News reported Monday.

Assistant Medical Examiner Kilak Kesha, who wrote the report, ruled McBride's death a homicide.

Police believe McBride was in a car accident about 1 a.m. Saturday in Dearborn Heights and that she was killed when she sought assistance from a homeowner several blocks away about 3:40 a.m.

The 54-year-old white owner of the home said he accidentally shot McBride, who is black, in the face, believing that she was breaking into his home.

The case has drawn comparisons to that of Florida teen Trayvon Martin, who was shot February 2012 by George Zimmerman, who cited provisions of the state's Stand Your Ground law that allowed him to defend himself because he felt his life was in imminent danger.

Gerald Thurswell, an attorney for the McBride family, said he didn't understand how the Detroit homeowner could claim his life was in "imminent danger" when he was in a locked house.

The homeowner has not been charged.

Police have begun to stitch together a time line of the two hours between McBride's car crash and her death, the Detroit Free Press reported.

Detroit police spokesman Sgt. Michael Woody said police received a 911 call just before 1 a.m. Nov. 2 about a no-injury accident on the city's west side in which the driver had left the scene.

Because the call was considered low priority, police did not respond until a second call said the driver had returned. When police arrived, no one was there.

Thurswell said a woman and her family who helped McBride at the crash scene said McBride was bleeding in the face and "confused" and kept saying she wanted to go home.

The autopsy report did not mention other facial or head injuries.

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