JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Closing arguments wrapped up midday on the sixth day of the Michael Dunn murder trial, followed by a lengthy reading of jury instructions by Judge Russell Healey. Just after 5 p.m., he sent jurors off to begin deliberating with the expectation that they would do so for a few hours. Healey told jurors yesterday that he would bring in dinner and allow them to discuss the case until 7 p.m., possibly later if they so chose.
The state's first closing argument was presented Wednesday morning by Assistant State Attorney Erin Wolfson, who hammered Dunn for "shooting into a car of unarmed teenagers" on Nov. 23, 2012, then leaving the scene without calling police. She insisted that the incident arose out of "his rage."
"This defendant was disrespected by a 17-year-old teenager," Wolfosn proclaimed, dramatically pointing at Dunn, "and he lost it!"
Wolfson also hit hard at the fact that Dunn's fiancé said Dunn never told her that he saw a gun or any kind of weapon, as he claims.
"Wouldn't that be the first thing you'd tell the love of your life when she gets back in car?" Wolfson asked jurors. "'I shot someone, but they pointed a gun at me.' ... Wouldn't that be the bit she remembers the most?"
During his closing argument, Dunn's attorney Cory Strolla attempted to poke holes in the state's case, noting the elapsed time between the incident and law enforcement's more thorough search of the area. "They never checked the bushes, they never checked the dumpster," he told them. "Nov. 23: no search. Nov. 24: no search. Nov. 25: no search. Nov 26: no search."
Assistant State Attorney John Guy, who presented the state's final closing argument, said that it was Dunn's own failure to report the incident to police that prevented a more thorough search of the area for the weapon Dunn alleges he saw.
"If he was truly asking in self defense, he wouldn't have been running from everybody," Guy said.
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