2. Trayvon Martin updates
Zimmerman is in police custody in Florida and has been charged with second-degree murder
Prosecutors plan to prove he shot Trayvon with malice, but not premeditation
Zimmerman plans to plead not guilty and faces up to life in prison if convicted
Bill Cosby said on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday that the debate should focus on guns, not race
Said there is a need to get guns off the streets and that people should be taught to use every possible alternative before shooting someone
Cosby said the bigger question was what Zimmerman was doing with a gun and who taught him how to behave with it
1. Trayvon Martin updates
Enhanced video of Zimmerman being brought into custody shows a wound on the back of his head, but no blood on his shirt or nose - ambulance for him was canceled because his injuries were not life threatening
Forensics experts have confirmed the screams you hear in the 911 calls were not Zimmerman’s - they had no audio recording of Trayvon’s voice to test it
There have been marches and rallies across the country and in London in support of Trayvon and his family
Lead homicide investigator Chris Serino recommended that Zimmerman be charged with manslaughter - he was advised by the prosecutor not to file charges because there is not enough evidence for a conviction
Stinks of a police cover-up
1. Trayvon Martin updates
911 calls have been released - you can hear Trayvon screaming for help and then a gunshot and his screams stop
Father of Zimmerman wrote a letter to an Orlando newspaper - his son is not a racist, he is Hispanic and grew up in a multi-racial family, would never do something like this (Kate: well he did do it, so…)
- Mary Cutcher believes the confrontation ended before they (Trayvon and Zimmerman) got to her back yard (which is where Trayvon was killed). She believes Zimmerman continued to chase Trayvon while he was trying to get home
- Austin McLendon was less than 20 yards from Trayvon when he was shot - his mother said police and some media have twisted his account to fit a self-defense theory
Many witnesses say police and investigators attempted to lead them in their questioning, or did not do a thorough job during the interviews (Cutcher says she contacted them several times before they interviewed her again)
Sheryl Brown (Austin’s mother) said the night of the shooting, one investigator told her flat out, it wasn’t self-defense and there was racial stereotyping going on
2. Trayvon Martin
The 17 year-old African-American was shot once in the chest by George Zimmerman, volunteer captain of the neighborhood watch on Feb. 26. Martin was dead when police arrived.
Trayvon was visiting his father, stepmother and brother in Sanford, Florida. They were watching a basketball game and during half-time Trayvon went to a convenience story to get his younger brother candy.
On the way back, Trayvon caught the attention of Zimmerman, 26 year-old criminal justice major
Zimmerman called 911 to report a suspicious person - was told that police were on their way and not to engage the person
Instead Zimmerman (who had a loaded gun) tailed Trayvon in his car, at some point got out and followed him. By Zimmerman’s account, Trayvon noticed he was being followed and asked “what’s your problem?” - physical confrontation ensued soon after
Six neighbors called the police to report shouting and a gun shot
When Sanford police arrived, they found Trayvon lying face down on a patch of grass about 70 yards from his house. All he had with him was a can of iced tea and a pack of Skittles.
Zimmerman claims to have acted in self defense - police told Trayvon’s family that Zimmerman had a squeaky clean background - not exactly true, in 2005 Zimmerman was arrested for resisting an officer with violence and battery on a law enforcement officer, but the charges were later dropped
Tracy Martin (father) asked why there was no arrest, police told him about Zimmerman’s ‘clean’ background - Tracy then asked about Trayvon’s background, which is also clean - “So I asked if Zimmerman having a clean record, did that give him the right to shoot and kill an unarmed kid?”
Zimmerman has not been arrested or charged - police say the investigation will be wrapped up by the end of the week. They will then hand it over to the county court who will decide whether or not to prosecute.