Appeal rejected in racially tinged teen murder

The Florida Supreme Court on Monday refused to take up an appeal by a man convicted in the high-profile shooting death of a teen in a Jacksonville convenience-store parking lot in 2012.

Michael Dunn took the case to the Supreme Court in December after the 1st District Court of Appeal ruled against him in the murder of 17-year-old Jordan Davis. As is common, justices did not explain their reasons Monday for declining to take up the case.

The murder drew national media coverage and came amid increased scrutiny of the deaths of young black men. Dunn is white, while Davis was black. The shooting came after Davis and three friends stopped at a Gate convenience store and Dunn pulled into an adjacent parking space. The teens were listening to loud music, and Dunn asked them to turn it down. Ultimately, Dunn and Davis exchanged words, and Dunn fired repeatedly into the Dodge Durango that carried the teens.

Dunn was convicted of first-degree murder while discharging a firearm, three counts of attempted second-degree murder while discharging a firearm, and one count of shooting or throwing deadly missiles, according to the appeals-court ruling in September. He was sentenced to life in prison for the murder.

At the appeals court, Dunn contended, in part, that he had received “ineffective assistance of counsel” during his trial. As an example, Dunn argued that his lawyer was ineffective for failing to hire an expert to examine audio from the convenience store’s surveillance video, but the appeals court rejected the argument.