Michael Dunn: I had 'no choice' but to shoot teen playing loud music

In closing testimony at the 'loud music' murder trial in Florida, Michael Dunn said he faced 'life or death' if he didn't shoot teen Jordan Davis.

By Gabrielle Levy
Michael Dunn: I had 'no choice' but to shoot teen playing loud music
Michael Dunn.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla., Feb. 12 (UPI) -- The man accused of fatally shooting a Florida teen in November 2012 at a gas station said he was simply defending himself after he felt the teen was threatening him with a shotgun.

Michael Dunn, 47, testified that Jordan Davis, 17, brandished what he thought was a weapon out of the window of his SUV and threatened to kill Dunn before getting out of his car.


“It was Jordan Davis who kept escalating this to the point where I had no choice but to defend myself,” Dunn said, explaining why he fired his pistol out his car's window. “It was life or death.”

In closing testimony Tuesday morning, Dunn recalled the night of November 23, 2012, when he and his fiancée pulled into a gas station to buy a bottle of wine. Dunn said the SUV parked next to their car began to blast loud music, and he asked them to turn it down.

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The body panels on the SUV were rattling, my rear view mirror was shaking, my ear drums were vibrating,” Dunn said. “I mean, this was ridiculously loud music.”


Dunn said the people in the SUV agreed to turn down the music, and but then turned it up again. He said he heard racial epithets, and a man's voice saying "something, something cracker," and "I should kill that mother[expletive]."

At first, Dunn said, he thought he misheard, but then again heard "I should [expletive] kill that mother[expletive]."

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"He was screaming,” Dunn said. “There’s no mistake of what he said. That’s what he said.”

Dunn said the young men in the back seat, both black, were looking at him with "menacing expressions."

Are you talking about me?” Dunn said he asked them.

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“They were saying they wanted to kill the mother[expletive], and I wanted to know if I was that mother[expletive],” Dunn told the jury.

Then, the young man in the rear passenger seat “leaned forward and picked something up and slammed it against the door,” Dunn said.

Dunn said he thought he saw what was about four inches of a barrel of a shot gun sticking out of the window, and he heard the young man saying, “Yeah, I’m going to [expletive] kill you.”

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“I’m looking at a barrel and I’m looking at a gun and he’s threatening me,” Dunn told the jury.


The young man cracked open the door, looked at Dunn, and said, “You’re dead, bitch.”

Dunn said he saw the young man get out of the SUV and say “This [expletive]'s going down now.”

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“My death is imminent,” Dunn said. “He’s coming to kill me, he’s coming to beat me. I’m not really sure what his intentions are -- actually, he made it real clear what his intentions were.”

Dunn described how he took his pistol from the glove box of the car, and shot out the window.

A medical examiner testified Monday that Davis was killed by "multiple gunshot wounds," with three bullet wounds found on his body. She said Davis was most likely sitting in the rear seat of the SUV when he was shot.

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No gun was found in the SUV.


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