Exclusive: Jordan Davis’s Father Updates JET
Ron Davis could not watch the George Zimmerman trial.
Though the Florida father keeps Sybrina Fulton in his prayers and has been in contact to see how she is doing in the wake of George Zimmerman’s acquittal, tuning in daily proved to be too much.
“I would see highlights at the end of the evening,” he confides of the fight for justice in the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. “I just wanted to be informed. But for me, it wasn’t reality TV, it was real.”
That is because Davis’ son, Jordan, is the 17-year-old high school junior who dreamed about being a Marine until a chance, and fatal, run-in with a gun owner named Michael Dunn on Nov. 23, 2012. The latter, who had just come from his son’s wedding reception, encountered Davis and some of his friends at a Jacksonville, FL gas station. Dunn, a software developer, admonished the boys to turn down their music.
He then claims one of the boys threatened him, suggesting at one point that one of them pointed a weapon in his direction. What followed next: a hail of bullets from Dunn’s weapon that struck and killed Davis (who was in the back seat). The headlines about this senseless violence invoked a similar sense of outrage as the Martin case, to which it is often compared. More details on the tragedy here.
Davis, who has been attending hearings for his son’s shooter as recently as this week, told us he is encouraged by progress toward a trial. Though two judges have already recused themselves from the controversial case, the most recent, Judge Russell Healey, has denied Dunn bond and the right to declare himself indigent in order to get state funds for his defense.
As each ruling was made, Davis admits that he and Jordan’s mother, felt weak.
“Us, as parents, we didn’t know which way it would go,” Davis says from his Florida home. “It was making our hearts race. It’s always a squeamish moment. But this new judge, he seems no-nonsense and likes to get things done. That works in our favor.”
Closure to the criminal case is what Davis is looking for, with the next hearing set for Aug. 13 and a tentative trial date slated for Sept. 23. Despite his deep disappointment in the Zimmerman outcome, he says surviving witnesses on the scene could ensure justice is served. In the meantime, Davis is working to make sure that stand-your-ground loses ground.
“The only way to get rid of this law is to get rid of the people who are for it,” Davis insists of a law that has played a murky and murderous role in the deaths of two, young promising teens. “All across the country and, in each state, put those people on notice that you will not vote for them in the next election if they introduce or support it. You can riot, and tear up your own stores and communities, but that’s not effective. The only thing effective is threatening somebody’s job, in this case, a politician’s.”
And Davis wants those who are passionate about crippling this legislature to know that they need not be afraid of going after candidates who receive generous campaign funding from gun groups who want to see it thrive. “Ross Perot was a billionaire and he didn’t win any elections,” the eloquent and adamant dad points out. “Yes, they may have money for campaigns, but if they lose votes, they won’t be in office. It’s not about what you have, we have to make this is about what you stand for.”
**Learn more about Jordan Davis and the foundation in his name here. There will be a commemoration of Jordan’s life this November, on the anniversary of his death, according to his family.**