The woman's boyfriend, Markeis McGlockton, of Clearwater, was inside the store to buy his 5-year-old son a candy bar, according to the store owner. Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri said the state would not bring charges against Drejka, as the shooting "is within the bookends of "stand your ground" and within the bookends of force being justified".
"I'm not saying I agree with the [the law], but I don't make that call", said Gualtieri, who added that the roughly four seconds between when Drejka hits the ground and when he fires his weapon gives him pause. The driver who parked in the handicap spot is a woman.
He was reportedly angry she had parked in a handicapped spot.
McGlockton and his five-year-old son get out of the auto and go into the convenience store while his girlfriend Jacobs waits in the driver's seat.
Soon after, Drejka parks in a Toyota 4-Runner and gets out, quickly spotting that the vehicle parked in the handicapped spot does not have a placard or decal.
They stopped at the Circle A Food Store at 1201 Sunset Point Road on the way home from picking Jacobs up from her job as a certified nursing assistant to grab chips and drinks. Police say the argument became "heated" but did not involve any threats. Mustafa Hashen, a clerk and witness, said both men were regulars.
Witnesses told police that Michael Drejka was on the ground when he took out a handgun and fired one single round at Markeis McGlockton striking him in the chest, police said.
Immediately after going down, Drejka shot McGlockton in the chest.
Police say the men did not exchange words through the entire incident. McGlockton fell to the ground inside the store and was pronounced dead at a local hospital. When deputies arrived, Drejka was cooperative with deputies.
Markeis' loved ones are heartbroken but also outraged his killer is a free-man. He was just protecting us, you know?' she told the Tampa Bay Times on Friday. "And it hurts so bad".
Gualtieri said the incident falls under the state's "stand your ground" law that allows someone to use deadly force if they believe it necessary to prevent death or great bodily harm.
That action, and the seconds that followed it, have thrust the dispute over the handicap parking spot into the nationwide debate about "stand your ground" laws.
The agency will forward the case to the State Attorneys Office for a final decision, Gualtieri said.
"Just because you can doesn't mean you should", Gualtieri said at the start of a news conference on the case.