By July 16, 2013 4 Comments Read More →

No ‘STAND YOUR GROUND’ Right For 71 Year Old Florida African American Man

Video still of Trevor Dooley in trial. Courtesy Tampa Bay Times.

According to the Tampa Bay Times, the jury rejected Trevor Dooley’s claim of self-defense under the state of Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law.

One of the jury members said the law “did not apply to this case.” Jury foreman Walter Joss said, “The whole silly thing was over a skateboard … and it just escalated,” still not indicating how the origins of the conflict are relevant to the controversial Stand Your Ground defense.

The Tampa jury found Dooley, a 71-year-old black man,  guilty of manslaughter in the shooting death of his white neighbor, 41-year-old David James, in front of James’ then-8-year-old daughter Danielle.

The Jamaican-born Dooley believes that racism played a big part in his conviction, and he is not alone. Dooley told reporters, “Do you really think that if it was the other way around and the skin color would be different we would be here today? … We wouldn’t.”

James’ daughter, who has been in counseling since the tragedy, did not remember much of the incident. She testified that she only remembered Dooley trying to go home.

The incident occurred in September 2010, when James and Dooley got into an argument over a skateboarder who had been given permission by James to skateboard on the other side of the basketball court where James and his daughter had been playing.

Dooley, who is 5-feet-7 and weighs 160 pounds, said in his testimony that he shot the 6-foot-1, 240 pound James when he felt his life was in danger because James had his hands around Dooley’s neck and was trying to reach for his gun.

The Times also reported that along with manslaughter, Dooley was also convicted of the dubious charges of improper exhibition of a weapon and open carrying of a firearm, both misdemeanors.

Dooley will remain free on bail until his sentencing by Hillsborough Circuit Judge Ashley Moody on Jan. 10.

It should be remembered that George Zimmerman’s defense argued that it was irrelevant how the encounter with Trayvon Martin began. What mattered, they said, was that Zimmerman claimed he had no other choice but to fire. For months the media speculated that Zimmerman’s defense would rest upon the Stand Your Ground law, but ultimately, this defense was never invoked. When it has been the defense of African Americans defending themselves in Florida, the defense is consistently denied. First Marissa Alexander, and now Trevor Dooley.

We have until then to SPREAD THE WORD and RAISE AWARENESS about this case!



4 Comments on "No ‘STAND YOUR GROUND’ Right For 71 Year Old Florida African American Man"

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  1. Leonard Gump says:

    So we have to wait half a year more to learn if Dooley gets 30 to life?

  2. Peggy says:

    Yes this is all too familiar, we know that it is all about skin color, the law was created so that a White can kill a Black and get a way with it. this is proven over and over again no matter what happens or how it happens, its all the same. Just useless laws, we may soon see a civil war over the laws that keep disregarding one race over another, mark my words. just not fair!

  3. Alicia says:

    So disheartening… I’m praying that all of us will find relief in love and accept each other as the beautiful children of our Creator.

  4. Blair Copeland says:

    I am so disgusted that Mr. Dooley was found guilty and denied the right to defend himself. There is not a single piece of evidence that he was not defending himself. He was attacked, even by the man’s daughter’s own words, trying to go home. He never pulled his gun until he was assaulted and clearly threatened. Even a police officer does not have to meet a bar ANYWHERE close to the level they tried to hold Mr. Dooley. This was clearly caused by Mr. James assumed this black man did not have the right to have a gun and he attacked him. Mr James thought he was going to disarm Mr. Dooley, and he forfeited his life because of Mr. James poor judgement, not because of Mr. Dooley’s judgement. We need someone to start a petition to the White House, because Obama can pardon him. This whole thing just disgusts me. It is really sad that this girl lost her father, but Mr. James should have called 911, not tried to act as if he was a police officer.

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