JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Michael Dunn is guilty of three counts of attempted second degree murder, but a mistrial was declared on the most serious charge facing him- murder.
“The fact that they [jurors] were out for 30 hours, I literally have no regrets. But at the same time they came back with a conviction, so I have all the regrets,” says defense attorney Cory Strolla.
The jury deliberated over four days, ending in a deadlock that could not be overcome on the First Degree Murder charge. Jurors were also allowed to consider the lesser included charges Second Degree Murder and Manslaughter by Act, but the 12 person jury could not reach a unanimous verdict on any of those options.
“We’re gratified with the jury’s findings, and we just intend to go in and fight hard again for Jordan,” says State Attorney Angela Corey.
Corey has already announced the office intends to re-try Dunn on the murder charge and, for now, specifically for first degree murder.
“Ten times out of ten, when someone fires ten shots in to a car full of unarmed teenagers, we will file first degree murder and first degree attempted murder,” Corey says.
She says they are not concerned about having to re-try the murder charge, and plans to pursue that in Duval County. Strolla says it would be highly unlikely, after the attention gained by the trial, to get an impartial jury in Duval County.
But Strolla questions the second trial entirely.
“If everything being what it is, he was going to get 60 years- which is life in prison- why would you go through another lengthy, costly trial,” he says.
Dunn was charged with three counts of attempted first degree murder relating to the teens who were in the car he shot in to, killing Jordan Davis. The jury instead brought a conviction for second degree murder, deciding he acted without regard for life, but also without a premeditated intent to kill.
Each of those charges carries a mandatory minimum twenty years in prison, and a maximum of 30. Dunn was also found guilty of throwing/shooting a deadly missile, which carries 15 years. For the attempted murder charges, they will likely run consecutively, meaning Dunn would face a minimum of 60 years in prison. His sentencing has been tentatively set for March 24th.
Dunn has been returned to the custody of prison officials, and Strolla says he’s in a state of disbelief. He has already started considering an appeal, however, and intends to “keep fighting”.
Jacksonville mayor Alvin Brown released the following statement after the verdict: "Now that the jury has spoken, I want to thank the jurors for their dedicated service. Tomorrow would have been Jordan's 19th birthday. My prayers go out to his family. I share the community's grief at his senseless death. We should never forget the tragic loss of a young life, and we must commit to doing all we can to protect all of our young men and women and to help them realize their full potential."