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An Iowa man was sentenced Monday to up to 10 years behind bars for shooting a Black teenage girl near a rally for then-President Donald Trump last year.
On Dec. 6, Michael McKinney, a now-26-year-old Army veteran, fired a gun into a car full of teenage girls after the Des Moines “Stop the Steal” rally, according to police.
Prosecutors said that the girls had been trading insults with the pro-Trump rallygoers when McKinney, who was wearing body armor and carrying several firearms, shot into their car, hitting a then-15-year-old girl in the leg.
McKinney was arrested at the scene and pleaded guilty in June to intimidation with a dangerous weapon and willful injury. Judge Scott Beattie ruled Monday that the sentences, each a maximum of 10 years, be served concurrently.
“For those trying to argue this was deserved, what they do not realize is that bullet could have ricocheted and killed somebody — not just the victim and those in the car but anyone around,” Beattie said, according to the Des Moines Register.
McKinney, who left the Iowa National Guard in 2017 after five years, called it “poor judgment,” but his victim said his actions still haunt her.
“I believed I was going to die the day I was shot. I didn’t know if I would be able to walk again,” she said in a statement read aloud in court Monday.
“I’m a 16-year-old young lady and would love to love myself, but it’s hard when I look at my scars and remember the events of Dec. 6, 2020.”