Motions hearing in Dunn case passed until Thursday

Jordan Davis' mother says retrial should remain in Jacksonville

Michael Dunn appears in court for a pretrial hearing.
Michael Dunn appears in court for a pretrial hearing.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – In just a couple of weeks, Michael Dunn is set to be retried on a murder charge in the shooting death of 17-year-old Jordan Davis.

Monday morning, a judge was expected to hear seven motions related to the case, including a request from Dunn's attorney for a change of venue, but the hearing was passed until Thursday.

Davis' mother, Lucy McBath, feels very strongly that her son's case should stay in Duval County.

"My mindset has been that there have been other major trials and cases throughout the country that have had far greater attention, and those venues were not changed," McBath said. "So why would we have to change ours? You know, I believe Michael Dunn will get a fair trial here."

Dunn's attorney, Waffa Hanania, said this case has generated "a tremendous amount of pretrial publicity ... some of which has been erroneous and misleading, and all of which has been extremely prejudicial to the defendant."

The motion contains an affidavit signed by Dunn and two other attorney's in support of moving the retrial out of Duval County.

The State Attorney's Office would only tell News4Jax: "The SAO will comment in the appropriate venue - the courtroom."

Dunn is accused of killing Davis in a dispute over loud music at a Southside gas station in November 2012.

In February, jurors deadlocked on whether Dunn was guilty of murder. But he was convicted on three counts of attempted murder for shooting at three others in the SUV Davis was riding in.

Davis family attorney John Phillips believes Dunn can get a fair trial in Jacksonville and does not believe the judge would rule to bring in a jury from a neighboring county.

"Duval County is so big because of the consolidation of the city, and if you can get a jury of six in Sanford after all of the publicity there (in the George Zimmerman case), I think you can get a jury of 12 or 14 here," Phillips said.

McBath explained how she's preparing for the upcoming retrial.

"A lot of meditation, trying to just kind of stay low key," she said. "Of course, lots of prayer, lots of support. Just looking beyond the trial. Because I know we'll come to some sort of resolution this time."

Jury selection for the trial is scheduled for Sept. 22.