Judge rejects ‘Stand Your Ground' shooter's request for lower bond
CLEARWATER (FOX 13) - It’s been more than a week since charges were filed in the controversial ‘Stand Your Ground’ shooting in Clearwater, and the gunman was hoping for his $100,000 bond to be reduced. But Michael Drejka's request was denied Thursday.
Drejka, 47, has been in jail since his August 13 arrest. He was back in court this morning as his attorneys argued for a lesser bond, which could allow him a chance to be released prior to a possible trial.
But a Pinellas County judge rejected the request for a lower bond. "I believe $100,000 is a fair and reasonable bond," Judge Joseph Bulone said after hearing arguments from both sides.
Last week, Drejka pleaded not guilty to the manslaughter charge in the July 19 death of Markeis McGlockton. The charge was filed by the State Attorney’s Office.
The shooting led to protests in Clearwater and across the nation after Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri chose to hand over the case evidence to the State Attorney’s Office, and not arrest Drejka. At the time, he said recent changes to the Stand Your Ground law prevented him from making an arrest after Drejka claimed he fired his weapon to defend himself.
The shooting was captured on surveillance video. Investigators said the Drejka confronted McGlockton’s girlfriend after parking in a handicapped spot at the Circle A Food Store on Sunset Point Road. McGlockton is seen in the video shoving Drejka to the ground, then pausing. Drejka pulled out his handgun and fired one shot, striking the 27-year-old in the chest.
McGlockton walked back into the store, and collapsed. He passed away about 30 minutes later at Morton Plant Hospital.