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Not Dunn Yet - The Jury's Baffling Decisions

Categories: Crime

Defendant Michael Dunn
Defendant Michael Dunn
Michael Dunn was convicted today of attempted murder for shooting into a carful of teenagers after an argument about their loud music.

My heart goes out to Dunn and his supporters, to the family and friends of deceased Jordan Davis, and the three other occupants, Tommie Stornes, Leland Brunson, and Tevin Thompson.

But there seems to me to be a problem with the jury's decisions.

While jurors couldn't agree on the most serious charge of first-degree murder, the 12 jurors found Dunn guilty of three counts of attempted second-degree murder.

This makes no sense.

I'm not even going to get into whether Dunn was guilty or not guilty.  My interest is in the jury's baffling decisions and inconsistency.

Dunn fired ten rounds, nine of which hit the SUV with four teens inside.  One of the teens, 17-year-old Jordan Davis, was killed.

The verdict of guilty on three counts of attempted second-degree murder means that the jurors agreed that Dunn intentionally tried to kill three of those four teens (I can only assume those were the three teens in the car who survived).  More importantly, that decision means that the jurors did not believe Dunn acted in self-defense, for if he had, he could not have been found guilty of attempted murder.

Although the jurors agreed that Dunn was not acting in self-defense in the shooting of the three teens who survived, they could not reach that same conclusion in the shooting of Davis who died.

The jury also couldn't agree that Dunn intentionally tried to kill Davis.  If they did, they would have found Dunn guilty of at least second-degree murder since the shots that killed Davis were the same shots that were fired into the SUV occupied by the three others who survived, and they found Dunn guilty on three counts of attempted second-degree murder.

It seems to me that the charges among the four victims would be tied together.  If Dunn was acting in self-defense, that act would apply to all four of the teens.  The fact that one died and the other three didn't would be irrelevent.

If Dunn was found guilty of attempted second-degree murder against the three survivors, he must be found guilty of murder - either first-degree or second-degree - against the victim who actually died.

If the jury could not find Dunn guilty of murdering Davis, they could not then conclude that he was guilty of attempted murder of the other three occupants.

I think we're only getting started on this one.

"If you can't say something nice, let's hear it!"   — Joan Rivers

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