Theodore Wafer, the Detroit-area man on trial for fatally shooting an unarmed 19-year-old woman, told jurors Monday that he “wasn’t going to cower” after hearing loud banging at his front door.
During the seventh day of the trial for Wafer, who faces second-degree-murder charges for the killing of Renisha McBride, jurors heard testimony about the proximity of McBride to Wafer’s front door and the reason Wafer had a shotgun and not a security system.
According to CBS News, Wafer told Wayne County Circuit Court jurors in Michigan that he was afraid when he heard loud banging at his Dearborn Heights, Mich., home early that Nov. 2 morning. Wafer said that he followed the banging, which moved from his front door to a side door, and then retrieved his shotgun, CBS News reports. The news site reports that he told jurors that after opening his front door, he noticed that the screen door was damaged, so he opened that door. He stated that he saw someone move quickly, and then he raised his gun and fired.
Wafer told the jurors that he brought the 12-gauge shotgun that would ultimately kill McBride six years ago and that it was the only home security that he could afford, CBS News reports. “I think everybody would like to have a security system in their house,” Wafer said when questioned by his lawyer Cheryl Carpenter on why he didn’t have a security system. “I couldn’t afford it.”
The defense had a firearms expert testify earlier Monday that both Wafer and McBride were standing close to the screen door, which would explain Wafer’s claim that he was startled before he shot through the screen door. “My opinion is she was very close to the door … within a foot,” retired state Trooper David Balash told the jury.
Wafer explained that he shot McBride out of self-defense and that he was startled and afraid that someone was banging on his door at 4:30 a.m. “My front door and screen door are usually always locked,” Wafer told jurors, according to CBS News.
CBS News notes that prosecutors have argued that Wafer never needed to leave his home to investigate the banging at his door, since all the doors were locked, and he could have called 911 and therefore wouldn’t have had to use deadly force.
Read more at CBS News.