Michael Dunn

Again, a black teen is shot, but cases are not the same

USA TODAY, February 12, 2014

By Yamiche Alcindor

Once again, the nation watches as the man accused of fatally shooting a black teen is tried in Florida.

Michael Dunn, 47, shot Jordan Davis, 17, on Nov. 23, 2012. Within days, the public began comparing him to George Zimmerman, then 28, who killed Trayvon Martin, also 17, on Feb 26, 2012.

The same Florida prosecutors say both men murdered unarmed boys. Dunn and Zimmerman are adamant that, in fear for their lives, they acted in self-defense.

Dunn testified Tuesday that after firing several shots at Davis, he drove away because he thought no one had been hurt.

Closing arguments could come Wednesday.

Both cases have sparked outrage from people who say the killings show the deadly effects of racial profiling.

“From a social and a family perspective, there are a lot of similarities,” says Keisha Bentley-Edwards, a professor at the University of Texas at Austin who studies race, adolescence and academic and social development. “You have unarmed black teens who were acting normally and treated in a very egregious fashion. You have someone without any official authority imposing a sense of authority and enforcing it with lethal means.” (more…)