“I know in the Bible, it talks about in order to get into heaven, you have to forgive. At this part in my life I’m not there yet, and if the lord chooses to take me before I come to terms with this, then I will see you in hell where you and I will finish this. Mark my words.” Those were the strong words from Michael McGlockton Thursday as his son’s killer, Michael Drejka, was sentenced to 20 years in prison. Drejka fatally shot Markeis McGlockton last year in a Florida parking lot in a dispute over a handicapped parking space. After initially not charging Drejka, who claimed he was covered under the state’s “Stand Your Ground” law, the white man was ultimately charged with manslaughter in the death of McGlockton, who was black and unarmed. Drejka was found guilty in August, and faced up to 30 years behind bars.
Drejka’s defense asked for less time or even probation, but the judge called Drejka a “wannabe law enforcement officer” who had a habit of monitoring the parking lot despite the store owner asking him to stop because it was leading to altercations. At that point, the judge said, Drejka simply started bringing his gun along. McGlockton “died right in front of his young son,” who was standing with him at the time, the judge added; two of his other children were in the car. The judge also noted he never heard Drejka express remorse, NBC News reports. “I don’t hate you, but I will never forgive you,” McGlockton’s mother said Thursday, per the Tampa Bay Times. Drejka had no supporters in the courtroom, but his lawyer said his supporters simply didn’t want to come out of fear for their safety. Drejka also agreed to pay $550 in court costs and $5,000 in funeral costs, per ABC Action News. (Read more Florida stories.)