Security footage shows man, 76, fatally shooting black teen in Milwaukee [GRAPHIC VIDEO]
Spooner's brand of vigilante justice resulted in the death of neighboring a teen he suspected of burglarizing his home.
In a case that has drawn comparisons to the George Zimmerman trial, 76-year-old Milwaukee resident John Spooner was convicted yesterday of first-degree intentional homicide for shooting and killing Darius Simmons, 13, in May 2012.
Spooner and his legal counsel never contested that he was indeed the one who shot Simmons. That would've been a tough case to make since surveillance footage from Spooner's own surveillance cameras captured him shooting the teen.
The security footage was shown during the trial and obtained by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, which published it online. It shows Spooner confronting Darius with a gun and arguing with his mother before pulling the trigger. Here it is (WARNING: it's graphic):
Simmons was shot clear through his chest, and moments after running out of the video frame, he collapsed and died in the arms of his mother, who ran from her apartment onto the sidewalk after Darius was shot.
Following the shooting, police found Spooner pacing on the sidewalk. He told officers he'd reached a "boiling point" and was frustrated with police's inability to solve a break in at his home that left windows shattered and four of his shotguns missing. According to the AP, in conversations with officers, Spooner characterized Simmons as a member of a neighboring black family that was "nothing but trouble."
During the trial, Darius's mother, Patricia Larry, said that as she watched on, Spooner told her son "that he's going to teach him not to steal. And he shot him."
After a two day trial, Spooner was convicted of murder yesterday. The trial now shifts to its second phase, where Spooner's legal team will argue that he wasn't mentally competent at the time of the shooting due to anger issues.
-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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