A mourner holds an obituary displaying a picture of shooting victim Renisha McBride during her funeral service in Detroit, Michigan in this file photo taken November 8, 2013. A county prosecutor was expected to announce on Friday whether charges will be filed against a suburban Detroit man who police said fatally shot McBride when she came to his house seeking help after a car crash. REUTERS/Joshua Lott/Files (UNITED STATES - Tags: CRIME LAW)
Prosecutors charged Theodore Wafer, 54, with second-degree murder on Friday for the murder of 19-year-old Renisha McBride, who he shot in the face on his front porch on Nov. 2.
Wafer, a caucasian man who lives in Dearborn Heights, Mich., shot McBride in the face after she knocked on his door in the middle of the night seeking help after a car accident.
He appeared in Michigan District Court in Dearborn Heights on Friday.
Wafer faces both manslaughter and firearms possession charges. Wafer told police that the shooting was an accident. He did not enter a plea, according to Reuters. District Court Judge Mark Plawecki set Wafer's bail at $250,000.
Wafer, who has worked for about 10 years at the Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport, told police that he thought she was an intruder, and that his shotgun went off accidentally, blasting through a closed screen door.
Wafer's attorney, Mark Carpenter, said that his client takes care of his 81-year-old mother and has no prior criminal record except for DUI-related violations from around 20 years ago. His next court date is Dec. 18, USA Today confirms.
McBride was drunk when she knocked on his door, and was apparently injured from the car crash. He then shot her in the face at around 4:30 a.m. on Nov. 2. Toxicology tests of McBride revealed that she had a blood alcohol level of 0.218 percent, which is nearly triple the 0.08 percent legal limit for driving in Michigan, and also had marijuana in her system, CNN reports.
"There is no duty to retreat when you are in your own house, but someone who claims self-defense must have an honest and reasonable belief of imminent death or imminent great bodily harm to himself or another person," Wayne County prosecutor Kym Worthy told a news conference.
"We do not believe he acted in lawful self-defense," she said, and said that race did not factor into the charges.
McBride's family and civil rights leaders believe race was a factor. They have compared the shooting to the 2012 death of unarmed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, who was fatally shot by George Zimmerman.
McBride's fatal shooting has sparked outrage and protests, but it has not yet reached the national intensity of the Trayvon Martin case.
"It would be a gross understatement to say that there is an interest in this case, but we do not make our decisions in any case that we evaluate based on public opinion," Worthy said. "We let the facts and evidence guide us."