The tragic murder of Guma Oz Dubar, 45, a Black father who was a hard working taxi driver, has taken center stage in South Carolina. The reason is a stand your ground defense being used by James Loftis, 39, in the killing of Dubar and another man, James Newland, 32, identified as a friend of Dubar. The controversial S.C. Protection of Persons and Property Act, is a stand your ground law that gives homeowners the right in certain circumstances to use deadly force against people breaking into their home.
According to law enforcement, Dubar took Loftis home after a night at the Stilettos Gentlemen’s Club, a strip club in the North Charleston area. Dubar had frequent customers that needed a ride home from a night of drinking at the club. On the night of March 5, 2016, Dubar took Loftis back to his home. Iin the car also was Newland, who was a friend of Dubar. When they got to the residence, Loftis stated he was going in to get cash. It was then that Loftis claimed the two men barged into his home demanding a large sum of money for the cab ride. Loftis claims he was in fear for his life and shot the men in the head and chest. He then dug a hole in his backyard and set the bodies on fire. When his wife came home, she noticed that Loftis had bleached the house in an attempt to clean up the bloody crime scene so she called police.
Family members and friends of Dubar have stated that he would never try to force a person to pay a fare. Instead, they stated he would have called police and let them handle the situation as he had done in the past. At a court hearing on Monday, deputy solicitor Bryan Alfaro stated that the victims “were essentially just slow-cooked inside the grave site.”
Loftis claims that he was traumatized by the home invasion and had intended to call police at some point. As part of his stand your ground defense, evidence of a size 12 footprint at the door of his home was given to support a claim of home invasion. According to Loftis’ lawyer, the burning of the bodies did not make the case a double murder. Loftis now faces two charges of murder, but shockingly the judge allowed bond to be set at $250K. His lawyer stated that Loftis should be able to post bail sometime this week and will remain under house arrest until trial.