Published: 21:30 EDT, 7 November 2013 | Updated: 08:29 EDT, 8 November 2013>
An accident? The homeowner who shot 19-year-old Renisha McBride in the earlier hours of Saturday morning says he thought she was breaking into his house and that his gun discharged accidentally
The homeowner who shot an unarmed 19-year-old Detroit woman after she knocked on his door early Saturday morning says it was an accident.
Renisha McBride got into a car accident around 1:30am on Satuday while driving through Dearborn Heights. She was shot a little over two hours later while reportedly looking for help in a mostly white neighborhood.
'This man's claiming - believed the girl was breaking into the home. And he's also saying the gun discharged accidentally,' Lt James Serwatowski of the Royal Oak Police said.
According to a statement released by Renisha's family, the man responsible did not report the shooting to police and they responded after receiving calls from other neighbors in the community. They say he has not been arrested.
A police spokesman said they haven't arrested the gunman yet because prosecutor's want more information before making a decision.
While it was originally reported that Renisha was shot in the back of the head - Lt Serwatowski says that's not true.
'The girl was not shot in the back of the head while leaving the porch. I don't know where the family is getting this. She was shot in the front of the face, near the mouth.'
Lt Serwatowski also wouldn't make any definitive stance on whether or not Renisha was looking for help, drawing attention to the large gap of time between the accident and the shooting.
'She was in a car accident, but I don't know if she was trying to get help or what she was doing,' he said.
Representatives of the family say it doesn't matter where she was shot, but that use of a gun was needed at all.
Pastor W.J. Rideout (left) says it doesn't matter where Renisha was shot but that force was used at all. He's pictured yesterday with Renisha's aunt Bernita Spinks (center) and Ron Scott (right) outside the home where the shooting took place
Remembering: Two people light candles at a vigil held outside the home where Renisha was shot on Saturday while looking for help for her crashed car
'Wherever she was shot...she was shot defenselessly,' said Pastor W.J. Rideout, a civil and human rights activist who has been acting as a spokesman for the family.'She didn't have a weapon and my stance is that she should never have been shot. Whether it was in the front, back, side, whatever.'
Her family has asked for privacy until after Renisha's funeral, but they are pushing for charges to be filed against the currently unnamed gunman.
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They believe the homeowner shot Renisha out of racism.
Renisha's aunt, Bernita Spinks, wonders what would have happened had she been the one who shot a stranger: ‘Would I be standing here? No. I’d be in jail without a bond.’
Suffering: Renisha's family, including her aunt Bernita Spinks, say she would never hurt anyone and was shot out of racism, though police reportedly told someone at the scene it was a self-defense case
Angry: 'You wanted her dead,' said Dmetria Burnett of her cousin Renisha's killer. 'For somebody to shoot her in the head and not think twice about it? He shouldn't be free at all'
A group of activists rallied outside the Dearborn Heights Police station tonight, calling for more attention to Renisha's case.
'Black life is not valued in America, not worthy, not respected,' said Detroit activist Yusef Shaker, who helped to lead the rally. 'Here was a woman who was seeking help from potential danger and her life was taken...It's a Trayvon Martin case all over again.'
Police have thus far released very little information on the case, which tragically parallels a case from just a few weeks back.
That’s when 24-year-old Jonathan Ferrell crashed his car in North Carolina on September 14.
As he searched for help in a suburban neighborhood, he knocked on a door. The homeowner called 911 thinking that Ferrell, who was black, was trying to break into her home.
When police arrived and Ferrell approached them, he was Tasered. When he continued to approach them, Charlotte Police Officer Randall Kerrick opened fire and shot him 10 times.
Demanding justice: Protesters held a rally tonight outside the Dearborn Heights Police Department
Another case: Many are comparing her killing to the recent deaths of Trayvon Martin and Jonathan Ferrell - two black men shot by white men while unarmed
Bigger issue: Outside the police station, one activist said that 'black life is not valued in America'
Source : http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2491911/Detroit-man-shot-black-Renisha-McBride-says-accident.html