Lawyers defending a Detroit man who fatally shot a young, unarmed woman on his porch last year are signaling that the victim’s lifestyle should be fair game.
Theodore Wafer was charged with second-degree murder after killing Renisha McBride. He has claimed self-defense.
Suggestions that Renisha McBride was on his Dearborn Heights porch simply to seek help after a car crash are “fiction” and “utterly erroneous,” says attorney Cheryl Carpenter.
There’s no dispute that Wafer, 55, shot McBride in the face on Nov. 2. His lawyers insist he opened the front door and fired in self-defense, fearing that the drunken 19-year-old was trying to break into his home before dawn. Prosecutors, however, say he should have called 911 and kept the door shut.
Civil rights groups have suggested race may have played a role in the shooting, but prosecutors haven’t presented any evidence to make that connection. Wafer is white; McBride was black.
Wafer’s lawyers are also requesting that a new judge be appointed to the trial.
They said text messages, photos, school records and previous run-ins with the law are relevant to “whether Ms. McBride had a character trait for aggression.” A hearing is set for Friday.
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