Al Sharpton, the parents of Trayvon Martin and political leaders attended a rally in Clearwater, Florida, on Sunday protesting the state’s controversial “stand your ground” law following the death of a Black man last month, Fox 13 reports.
Sharpton organized the Rally for Justice in response to the death of 28-year-old Markeis McGlockton, a Black man who was shot and killed outside a Clearwater convenience store over a handicapped parking spot on July 19.
Police said Michael Drejka, 47, confronted McGlockton’s girlfriend, Britany Jacobs, for parking in a handicap parking spot.
McGlockton, who was inside the Circle A Food Store, went outside to defend his girlfriend and pushed Drejka to the ground, resulting in Drejka pulling out his handgun and shooting him in the chest, surveillance video shows.
“How can you have a civilian become the judge and jury over whether somebody should live?” Sharpton asked at the rally. “That’s what this law represents. It is also disproportionately used to the disadvantage of blacks.”
Law enforcement officials said at the time that the altercation was “within the bookends of ‘stand your ground’ and within the bookends of force being justified.” Drejka allegedly told authorities that he feared for his life.
Sharpton was joined by Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, parents of Florida teen Trayvon Martin, who was killed in 2012 by George Zimmerman.
Zimmerman claimed self-defense when he killed Martin and under the state’s “stand your ground” law was initially shielded from arrest, which resulted in nationwide outrage.
Activists at Sunday’s rally felt that “stand your ground” should not apply in the McGlockton incident because Drejka was not at his home when he killed him.
“Well, why he did it was clear to me, that he was just looking for an opportunity to kill someone,” Tiuanna Pavlov told Fox 13. “He needs his day in court. And, this is not a clear-cut case he was not standing his ground at home.”
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Teddy is a multimedia journalist who serves as the culture and political writer for EBONY. His work has appeared in NBC's Owned and Operated stations, as well as DNAInfo, which covered local neighborhood news in New York City. He received his Masters in Journalism from the Craig Newmark School of Journalism at CUNY in 2017.