Michigan Supreme Court to revisit Ted Wafer’s convictions in Renisha McBride’s shooting

Wafer currently serving minimum of 17 years

The state Supreme Court is taking a new look at the case of Ted Wafer, who was convicted in the shooting death of Renisha McBride.

DEARBORN HEIGHTS, Mich.The Michigan Supreme Court is taking a new look at the case against Theodore “Ted” Wafer.

Wafer is a Dearborn Heights man who shot and killed 19-year-old Renisha McBride as she pounded on his front door one morning in 2013.

Wafer is serving a minimum of 17 years. His attorneys want one of the charges against him thrown out.

Read: Michigan Supreme Court hears deadly Dearborn Heights porch shooting case

Wafer was convicted of second-degree murder and manslaughter for shooting through a screen door, killing McBride while she was on his front porch.

“How do you end up being convicted of two separate homicide offenses for one death,” legal expert Neil Rockind said.

Rockind said the manslaughter conviction enhanced sentencing guidelines for second-degree murder. The 62-year-old’s legal team want the manslaughter conviction thrown out, which could impact his sentence.

Rockind said prosecutors will be relying on a literal interpretation of the law.

“Prosecutors are going to be arguing that the different offenses that Wafer was convicted of,” Rockind said. “Actually allows for the guidelines to be calculated in this way.”

Regardless of the outcome, Wafer won’t get a new trial.

“If the manslaughter conviction is dismissed,” Rockind said. “Then he’ll be remanded for resentencing on just a murder offense and his sentencing guidelines would be changed.”

Rockind said the Michigan Supreme Court is sending a message to the legal community.

“Even if they don’t rule for Mr. Wafer, they’re going to tell us how we should be handling these things in the future,” Rockind said.

The Supreme Court is expected to hear arguments on Thursday.

Read: More Michigan Supreme Court coverage


About the Author:

Priya joined WDIV-Local 4 in 2013 as a reporter and fill-in anchor. Education: B.A. in Communications/Post Grad in Advanced Journalism