Three weeks since the incident, Pinellas County authorities charged a Clearwater man with manslaughter in a case seen by many as a test of Florida’s “stand your ground” law.
Deputies arrested Michael Drejka last week on allegations that he shot and fatally wounded Markeis McGlockton at the culmination of an argument over a parking spot in the lot of a local convenience store.
Investigators say Drejka confronted McGlockton’s girlfriend Britany Jacobs regarding her decision to park in a handicapped parking spot while having no tag or sticker to show that she was entitled to use the spot.
Witnesses say Drejka appeared belligerent towards Jacobs, causing one bystander to enter the store and inform McGlockton about the goings-on outside. Surveillance footage shows McGlockton exiting the store and pushing Drejka. Drejka, who was then on the ground, is shown to produce a .40-caliber handgun and fire at McGlockton.
McGlockton, 28, did not survive the encounter. Investigators say he was approximately 12 feet from Drejka when the fatal shots were fired. Though no words were exchanged between the two, Drejka allegedly told deputies that McGlockton twitch, causing him to fear further physical confrontation.
Charges against Drejka were not immediately filed, as Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri determined that his actions fell within the bounds of “stand your ground” and justified force, which prohibits law officers from carrying out an arrest.
However, upon receiving the case from Gualtieri, Pinellas-Pasco State Attorney Bernie McCabe determined that his office had sufficient facts to prove the occurrence of a crime. Deputies subsequently arrested Drejka.
Drejka was booked into the Pasco County Jail on a single count of manslaughter. The Delaware native continues to be held in custody pending the posting of a $100,000 bond.
The Law Offices of Bjorn Brunvand have been representing people charged with capital murder, felony drug charges, drunk driving, government fraud, and white-collar crimes for over a quarter century. Contact our office today to discuss your Tampa Bay-area state or federal charges.