Michael Drejka didn’t seem to be shocked after shooting dead an unarmed man in Florida last July and even brazenly suggested the victim had it coming according to witnesses.
Markeis McGlockton, 28, was gunned down outside a convenience store Clearwater where he had shopped with his five-year-old before being killed.
The 48-year-old shooter claims he was in fear of his life but witnesses recall him appearing irate rather than scared, according to NBC News.
Witnesses say Michael Drejka, 48, (left) had a proud demeanor after shooting dead unarmed man Markeis McGlockton (right) in Florida last July
McGlockton (left, standing) was shot dead by Drejka (kneeling) outside a store following a dispute about the parking spot
McGlockton, 28, (pictured left in a photograph held by his father Michael) was killed in front of his children after coming to his family’s defense
Drekja was released on bail Monday ahead of his pretrial hearing October 19 but bystander Robert Castelly claims to have heard Drejka mutter to no one in particular: ‘I just shot someone. What’d you think was gonna happen? He shouldn’t have ran up on me.’
Vicki Conrad was there at the time and while she was not able to hear him speaking she believes his body language was contradictory to him claiming he was simply standing his ground and defending himself.
‘His demeanor was, you know, uh, like, proud,’ the witness says in police transcripts.
When the interviewer asked her if it seemed like he didn’t care after taking his life outside the Circle A store, stating ‘I don’t want to put words into your mouth,’ she agreed.
‘Yeah, yeah. And, like, it’s all cool, you know,’ she added.
Michael Drejka said he has no regrets about shooting Markeis McGlockton, 28, over a handicapped parking spot. Drejka is currently in prison facing manslaughter charges
It supports prosecutors posing the question of whether Drejka really was acting in self-defense.
Even he has said he’s not sorry for putting a bullet through the father in full view of three-year-old and four-month-old children who waited in the car with the victim’s girlfriend Brittany Jacobs.
Drejka simply pointed out that he believes he stayed within the guidelines that the state’s laws allow when pulling the trigger.
When he was behind bars on $10,000 bond Drejka said he had ‘plenty of time to think’ about the shooting but still would not do anything different if he could turn back time.
‘As far as changing anything, events, I don’t see – no, not off the top of my head,’ he told WTSP in an interview from prison.
‘I followed the law the way I felt the law was supposed to be followed. I cleared every hurdle that the law had to put in front of me.’
Under the law, people are allowed to use deadly force if they believe they are in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm and have no obligation to retreat.
McGlockton’s girlfriend Brittany Jacobs (pictured with his father Michael McGlockton for Drejka’s first court appearance) got into a fight before he shot McGlockton
Jacobs said Drejka confronted her for being parked in the handicapped-accessible space and told her to move the ‘f*****g car’.
Security footage showed McGlockton leaving the store and, seeing the argument, shoving Drejka to the ground.
Seconds later, Drejka pulls a handgun and shoots McGlockton as he backs away.
McGlockton then runs back into the store clutching his chest. Witnesses said he collapsed in front of young Markeis, who was waiting inside.
Drejka said that he’s spent his ‘whole life’ looking ‘for a handicapped parking spot’ for his late high school sweetheart and, more recently, his mother-in-law.
‘It’s always been a hotbed for me, always touched a nerve with me,’ he said.
Drejka said he doesn’t ‘usually confront people about it’ and claims that was the case with McGlockton, despite the fact that footage shows him walking up to Jacobs’ car and confronting her over the spot.
‘I did not confront anyone,’ he said. ‘I was confronted and I answered.’
Drejka also claims McGlockton ‘tackled’ him to the ground and that it felt like ‘someone hit me from behind with something’.
The footage clearly shows the victim pushing Drejka in the chest, not the back.
Drejka said he felt ‘vindicated’ when Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri refused to arrest him and said he was protected by the state’s Stand Your Ground law.
But after protests from McGlockton’s family and civil rights group, the State Attorney reviewed the case and decided to pursue charges against Drejka.
Drejka, who was arrested on August 13 for the July 19 shooting, maintains that he is not a racist and not a violent or confrontational person.
But Drejka has threatened three other drivers in the past few years, even pointing a gun at them, according to Pinellas County Sheriff’s Detective George Moffett.
Three months before the fatal July incident, Drejka allegedly threatened to shoot Richard Kelly, a black septic truck driver.
He also allegedly hurled the N-word at Kelly when the driver parked in the same handicapped-accessible parking space as McGlockton, CNN reported.
Kelly drove away, but his boss told Moffett that Drejka later called and told him ‘he was lucky he didn’t blow his employee’s head off.’
Drejka told WTSP that the claim was ‘false’ and he ‘wouldn’t have used that word’.
The detective said that in another case in 2012, 18-year-old Tyler Smith was driving in front of Drejka’s truck when he stopped at a yellow light.
This enraged Drejka, who allegedly displayed a gun to the teenager and later followed him. Smith declined to press charges.
In another incident that year, a woman told police that Drejka pointed a gun at her and the occupants of her car.
Sheriff Bob Gualtieri (pictured) recently stood by his decision not to arrest Drejka, saying the man was defending himself and had claimed he was in fear for his life
When police interviewed the suspect, Drejka denied pointing a gun at the other vehicle, but said he honked at the motorist because she was driving too slow through a school zone.
In November 2013, Drejka was again interviewed by police in connection to a road-rage incident in which he was accused of deliberately causing another vehicle carrying two children to rear-end his truck.
Drejka claimed he missed a turn, but the trooper who responded to the scene said it did not appear like the motorist had attempted to turn before the crash.
Michael McGlockton said he believes his son would still be alive if the law didn’t exist.
‘He didn’t have to pull that trigger. But because of Stand Your Ground, this is what happens,’ he said.