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White man charged with attempted murder after shooting Black girl at Trump protest

The army vet faces up to 25 years if convicted.

Michael McKinney Polk County Jail via AP

A white military veteran has been charged in connection to the shooting of a Black teenager. Michael McKinney is facing attempted murder charges after he shot and wounded a 15-year-old girl at a Trump demonstration in Des Moines, Kentucky.

As ABC News reported, McKinney — a supporter of the Proud Boys — fired into a car of four unarmed Black girls on Dec. 6, striking the driver in the leg. The exact details of the incident are not clear.

A news release states the gunfire was traffic-related and makes no mention of a rally or race, but other sources provide a more harrowing account.

The Associated Press, for example, said the shooting was the culmination of a verbal clash between Trump supporters and Black teenagers. Danielle Gross, the teen’s mother, shared a similar story, adding the argument between her daughter and the rallygoers started after they were called racial slurs. The pro-Trump mob reportedly circled the girl’s car, so she put her car in reverse in an attempt to break free and struck a pickup truck in the process. McKinney — who investigators say wasn’t among the group of protesters — responded with gunfire in what he says was an act self-defense.

According to court documents, McKinney placed the shell casings in the trunk of his car in attempt to cover his tracks, but was later forced to admit his role in the shooting when he was identified by other rallygoers.

As for the teen driver, she was immediately taken to the hospital where her wounds were treated. Per Gross, her daughter refused to leave the house for a week as a result of her trauma. She also expressed her safety concerns as she says she has yet to hear from the police since the shooting.

McKinney is currently in police custody following the shooting with his bond was set at $500,000. He faces 25 years in prison if convicted.

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