A Tennessee store clerk, Anwar Ghazali, accused of shooting and killing 17-year-old Dorian Harris on March 29, 2018, was convicted Thursday, Aug.15, of second-degree murder following a four-day trial by a jury in a Shelby County criminal court.
Ghazali remains in custody and will be sentenced on Sept. 23 by Judge W. Mark Ward, according to an online affidavit and press release by the Shelby County District Attorney’s Office.
Dorian Harris, 17 years old, entered the Top Stop Shop in Memphis, Tennessee, around 10 p.m., took at least one beer from a cooler and left without paying.
Ghazali, armed with a gun, “ran after Harris for a short distance” before firing several shots at the teen, the press release states.
Beverly Loverson, a witness testified during the trial that she begged Ghazali not to kill the teen, as the Washington Post reported.
“As he passed me, I said, ‘Don’t kill him. Don’t kill him. It’s just a beer,'” Loverson testified.
Ghazali came back to the store and said, “I think I shot him.” He continued ringing up customers. Both Ghazali and Loverson did not call police.
One of the bullets Ghazali fired entered Dorian’s back right thigh, severing his femoral artery, causing the teen to bleed to death as he fled the store. Harris’s body was found in a yard at the rear of 1149 Springdale near the grocery.
Ghazali’s defense said he never intended to kill Harris, and Ghazali fired a weapon upward into the night air as Harris ran away. The rounds fired were meant to be warning shots, according to US Today.
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“At his sentencing hearing I expect him to express his heartfelt remorse and his hope that Mr. Harris’ family can forgive him and continue healing,” Ghazali’s defense attorney, Blake Ballin said, according to CNN.
Ghazali will be sentenced on Sept. 23. Second-degree murder, in Tennessee, is punishable by 15 to 60 years in prison.