The recent fatal shooting in Florida that involves a Stand Your Ground (SYG) defense deserves careful inspection and reflection for anyone who carries a concealed firearm. On July 19, 2018 Britany Jacobs parked her car in a handicapped space at a convenience store in Clearwater, and Markeis McGlockton and their son went into the store.
Michael Drejka had an issue with Jacobs parking in the handicapped spot without a handicap placard or special license plate and approached the driver’s side of the car.
When McGlockton exited the store, he walked directly up to Drejka and shoved him violently backwards. Drejka fell to the ground. Drejka was legally armed, drew his firearm and fired one shot.
To this point there seems to be little in dispute.
Drejka asserted a SYG defense, and Pinellas County Sheriff Gualtieri accepted it and did not charge Drejka.
And this is where the country has gone nuts. There are claims that the SYG laws are a “license for whites to kill blacks.” There are claims that Drejka is getting away with Murder.
One headline on CNN.com read, in part, “Florida’s ‘stand-your-ground’ case: Push doesn’t justify shooting…”
As Sheriff Gualtieri explained, it wasn’t just a “tap” or a “shove”; it was a “violent push”.
Is Drejka entitled to a pass on the SYG laws?
To me it appeared that McGlockton was not advancing on it after Drejka drew his firearm. In fact, it appears he was stepping backwards at the time he was shot.
The video is very helpful. Watch it again. Watch it several times. Did Drejka pull the trigger too soon?
Training and thinking are critical, should you have to defend yourself. Practice both – the training and the thinking.
What if Drejka had drawn, but hadn’t fired?
Our brains must operate faster than our fingers. Think about it. If you must shoot in time to avoid being killed or incurring great bodily harm, you’ll shoot. But don’t shoot too soon.