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Michael Drejka will not use Stand Your Ground as defense at trial, opting for jury decision

Posted at 4:57 PM, Jun 07, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-16 14:38:43-04

PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. — There had been speculation Michael Drejka was going to try and use Florida’s controversial stand your ground to gain immunity in his manslaughter case, but instead he will go to trial and let a jury make that decision.

“I think that he has a better chance with the jury because it’s an emotional charged situation," said Jeff Swartz, a former attorney and judge now with WMU-Cooley Law School.

RELATED: New information released in the Michael Drejka case

Swartz says if there was a stand your ground hearing, a judge would have made the ruling after going through the surveillance video frame by frame.

“Whereas a jury, he can argue well it was happening in real time. I’m on the guy on the ground. I’m the guy being threatened. And as a result of which you can’t slow it down and know the emotions I felt at the time.”

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Drejka is charged with manslaughter for last year’s well publicized parking lot confrontation with Markeis McGlockton that ended with Drejka shooting and killing McGlockton.

McGlockton’s family is anxious for the trial. Before it start's they’ll mark the one-year anniversary of his death.

RELATED: Should Stand Your Ground shooter Michael Drejka's past be fair game in court?

“Every time you come to court you see the man that is responsible for taking your son’s life. And to me a man, really, who has no remorse or regard for it either way," said attorney Michele Rayner-Goolsby.

Micheal Drejka’s defense team says they are on track for the August 19 trial.