Dunn and 17-year-old Jordan Davis, who was sitting in the back seat of the SUV, exchanged words. Dunn then pulled out a gun and shot eight or nine times into the SUV. Jordan was hit twice and died of his injuries.
Dunn and his girlfriend left the scene and drove back to their hotel and when they saw the news the next morning that someone had been killed in the shooting, they went back to Dunn's home in Brevard County.
Police were able to get a description of Dunn and the license plate of his car from witnesses to the shooting. Police tracked Dunn to his home and arrested him on charges of murder and attempted murder.
Dunn's lawyer told reporters, "We can't say what the defense will be at this state..but Stand Your Ground is a possibility."
According to Dunn's lawyer Dunn is "an avid firearms owner" and "has a concealed weapons permit" and felt threatened when "he started hearing epithets."
Dunn's lawyer said Dunn "rolled down his window and politely said, 'Would you mind turning that music down?' and the driver apparently turned it off immediately. Then he hears from the back, 'That (expletive), he can't, that (expletive), we ain't going to tell us where to turn our music down.'" The lawyer continued, saying Dunn "saw a shotgun barrel come up in the rear passenger window, he saw about three of four inches of it. He estimated the gauge of the shotgun, the type, everything, he's very familiar with firearms, as I said, owns firearms and has since he was in third grade. He immediately went into self-defense mode, which any responsible firearms owner would do."
Police, however, did not find any guns in the SUV.
Psychology studies have found that someone holding a gun is more likely to perceive others as also being armed, even when they are not.
One such study, Action alters object identification: Wielding a gun increased the bias to see guns, published in the Oct. 2012 Journal of Experimental Psychology, concluded:
Participants determined whether another person was holding a gun or a neutral object. Critically, the participant did this while holding and responding with either a gun or a neutral object. Responsing with a gun biased observers to report "gun present" more than did responding with a ball. Thus, by virtue of affording a perceiver the opportunity to use a gun, he or she was more likely to classify objects in a scene as a gun and, as a result, to engage in threat-induced behavior (raising a firearm to shoot).