(Reuters) – A pit bull named Big Boi began menacing George and Shellie Zimmerman in the fall of 2009.
The first time the dog ran free and cornered Shellie in their gated community in Sanford, Florida, George called the owner to complain. The second time, Big Boi frightened his mother-in-law’s dog. Zimmerman called Seminole County Animal Services and bought pepper spray. The third time he saw the dog on the loose, he called again. An officer came to the house, county records show.
“Don’t use pepper spray,” he told the Zimmermans, according to a friend. “It’ll take two or three seconds to take effect, but a quarter second for the dog to jump you,” he said.
“Get a gun.”
That November, the Zimmermans completed firearms training at a local lodge and received concealed-weapons gun permits. In early December, another source close to them told Reuters, the couple bought a pair of guns. George picked a Kel-Tec PF-9 9mm handgun, a popular, lightweight weapon.
By June 2011, Zimmerman’s attention had shifted from a loose pit bull to a wave of robberies that rattled the community, called the Retreat at Twin Lakes. The homeowners association asked him to launch a neighborhood watch, and Zimmerman would begin to carry the Kel-Tec on his regular, dog-walking patrol – a violation of neighborhood watch guidelines but not a crime.
Few of his closest neighbors knew he carried a gun – until two months ago.
On February 26, George Zimmerman shot and killed unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin in what Zimmerman says was self-defense. The furor that ensued has consumed the country and prompted a re-examination of guns, race and self-defense laws enacted in nearly half the United States.
During the time Zimmerman was in hiding, his detractors defined him as a vigilante who had decided Martin was suspicious merely because he was black. After Zimmerman was finally arrested on a charge of second-degree murder more than six weeks after the shooting, prosecutors portrayed him as a violent and angry man who disregarded authority by pursuing the 17-year-old.
But a more nuanced portrait of Zimmerman has emerged from a Reuters investigation into Zimmerman’s past and a series of incidents in the community in the months preceding the Martin shooting.
Based on extensive interviews with relatives, friends, neighbors, schoolmates and co-workers of Zimmerman in two states, law enforcement officials, and reviews of court documents and police reports, the story sheds new light on the man at the center of one of the most controversial homicide cases in America.
The 28-year-old insurance-fraud investigator comes from a deeply Catholic background and was taught in his early years to do right by those less fortunate. He was raised in a racially integrated household and himself has black roots through an Afro-Peruvian great-grandfather – the father of the maternal grandmother who helped raise him.
A criminal justice student who aspired to become a judge, Zimmerman also concerned himself with the safety of his neighbors after a series of break-ins committed by young African-American men.
Though civil rights demonstrators have argued Zimmerman should not have prejudged Martin, one black neighbor of the Zimmermans said recent history should be taken into account.
“Let’s talk about the elephant in the room. I’m black, OK?” the woman said, declining to be identified because she anticipated backlash due to her race. She leaned in to look a reporter directly in the eyes. “There were black boys robbing houses in this neighborhood,” she said. “That’s why George was suspicious of Trayvon Martin.”
George Michael Zimmerman was born in 1983 to Robert and Gladys Zimmerman, the third of four children. Robert Zimmerman Sr. was a U.S. Army veteran who served in Vietnam in 1970, and was stationed at Fort Myer in Arlington, Virginia, in 1975 with Gladys Mesa’s brother George. Zimmerman Sr. also served two tours in Korea, and spent the final 10 years of his 22-year military career in the Pentagon, working for the Department of Defense, a family member said.
In his final years in Virginia before retiring to Florida, Robert Zimmerman served as a magistrate in Fairfax County’s 19th Judicial District.
Robert and Gladys met in January 1975, when George Mesa brought along his army buddy to his sister’s birthday party. She was visiting from Peru, on vacation from her job there as a physical education teacher. Robert was a Baptist, Gladys was Catholic. They soon married, in a Catholic ceremony in Alexandria, and moved to nearby Manassas.
Gladys came to lead a small but growing Catholic Hispanic enclave within the All Saints Catholic Church parish in the late 1970s, where she was involved in the church’s outreach programs. Gladys would bring young George along with her on “home visits” to poor families, said a family friend, Teresa Post.
“It was part of their upbringing to know that there are people in need, people more in need than themselves,” said Post, a Peruvian immigrant who lived with the Zimmermans for a time.
Post recalls evening prayers before dinner in the ethnically diverse Zimmerman household, which included siblings Robert Jr., Grace, and Dawn. “It wasn’t only white or only Hispanic or only black – it was mixed,” she said.
Zimmerman’s maternal grandmother, Cristina, who had lived with the Zimmermans since 1978, worked as a babysitter for years during Zimmerman’s childhood. For several years she cared for two African-American girls who ate their meals at the Zimmerman house and went back and forth to school each day with the Zimmerman children.
“They were part of the household for years, until they were old enough to be on their own,” Post said.
Zimmerman served as an altar boy at All Saints from age 7 to 17, church members said.
“He wasn’t the type where, you know, ‘I’m being forced to do this,’ and a dragging-his-feet Catholic,” said Sandra Vega, who went to high school with George and his siblings. “He was an altar boy for years, and then worked in the rectory too. He has a really good heart.”
George grew up bilingual, and by age 10 he was often called to the Haydon Elementary School principal’s office to act as a translator between administrators and immigrant parents. At 14 he became obsessed with becoming a Marine, a relative said, joining the after-school ROTC program at Grace E. Metz Middle School and polishing his boots by night. At 15, he worked three part-time jobs – in a Mexican restaurant, for the rectory, and washing cars – on nights and weekends, to save up for a car.
After graduating from Osbourn High School in 2001, Zimmerman moved to Lake Mary, Florida, a town neighboring Sanford. His parents purchased a retirement home there in 2002, in part to bring Cristina, who suffers from arthritis, to a warmer climate.
YOUNG INSURANCE AGENT
On his own at 18, George got a job at an insurance agency and began to take classes at night to earn a license to sell insurance. He grew friendly with a real estate agent named Lee Ann Benjamin, who shared office space in the building, and later her husband, John Donnelly, a Sanford attorney.
“George impressed me right off the bat as just a real go-getter,” Donnelly said. “He was working days and taking all these classes at night, passing all the insurance classes, not just for home insurance, but auto insurance and everything. He wanted to open his own office – and he did.”
In 2004, Zimmerman partnered with an African-American friend and opened up an Allstate insurance satellite office, Donnelly said.
Then came 2005, and a series of troubles. Zimmerman’s business failed, he was arrested, and he broke off an engagement with a woman who filed a restraining order against him.
That July, Zimmerman was charged with resisting arrest, violence, and battery of an officer after shoving an undercover alcohol-control agent who was arresting an under-age friend of Zimmerman’s at a bar. He avoided conviction by agreeing to participate in a pre-trial diversion program that included anger-management classes.
In August, Zimmerman’s fiancee at the time, Veronica Zuazo, filed a civil motion for a restraining order alleging domestic violence. Zimmerman reciprocated with his own order on the same grounds, and both orders were granted. The relationship ended.
In 2007 he married Shellie Dean, a licensed cosmetologist, and in 2009 the couple rented a townhouse in the Retreat at Twin Lakes. Zimmerman had bounced from job to job for a couple of years, working at a car dealership and a mortgage company. At times, according to testimony from Shellie at a bond hearing for Zimmerman last week, the couple filed for unemployment benefits.
Zimmerman enrolled in Seminole State College in 2009, and in December 2011 he was permitted to participate in a school graduation ceremony, despite being a course credit shy of his associate’s degree in criminal justice. Zimmerman was completing that course credit when the shooting occurred.
On March 22, nearly a month after the shooting and with the controversy by then swirling nationwide, the school issued a press release saying it was taking the “unusual, but necessary” step of withdrawing Zimmerman’s enrollment, citing “the safety of our students on campus as well as for Mr. Zimmerman.”
A NEIGHBORHOOD IN FEAR
By the summer of 2011, Twin Lakes was experiencing a rash of burglaries and break-ins. Previously a family-friendly, first-time homeowner community, it was devastated by the recession that hit the Florida housing market, and transient renters began to occupy some of the 263 town houses in the complex. Vandalism and occasional drug activity were reported, and home values plunged. One resident who bought his home in 2006 for $250,000 said it was worth $80,000 today.
At least eight burglaries were reported within Twin Lakes in the 14 months prior to the Trayvon Martin shooting, according to the Sanford Police Department. Yet in a series of interviews, Twin Lakes residents said dozens of reports of attempted break-ins and would-be burglars casing homes had created an atmosphere of growing fear in the neighborhood.
In several of the incidents, witnesses identified the suspects to police as young black men. Twin Lakes is about 50 percent white, with an African-American and Hispanic population of about 20 percent each, roughly similar to the surrounding city of Sanford, according to U.S. Census data.
One morning in July 2011, a black teenager walked up to Zimmerman’s front porch and stole a bicycle, neighbors told Reuters. A police report was taken, though the bicycle was not recovered.
But it was the August incursion into the home of Olivia Bertalan that really troubled the neighborhood, particularly Zimmerman. Shellie was home most days, taking online courses towards certification as a registered nurse.
On August 3, Bertalan was at home with her infant son while her husband, Michael, was at work. She watched from a downstairs window, she said, as two black men repeatedly rang her doorbell and then entered through a sliding door at the back of the house. She ran upstairs, locked herself inside the boy’s bedroom, and called a police dispatcher, whispering frantically.
“I said, ‘What am I supposed to do? I hear them coming up the stairs!'” she told Reuters. Bertalan tried to coo her crying child into silence and armed herself with a pair of rusty scissors.
Police arrived just as the burglars – who had been trying to disconnect the couple’s television – fled out a back door. Shellie Zimmerman saw a black male teen running through her backyard and reported it to police.
After police left Bertalan, George Zimmerman arrived at the front door in a shirt and tie, she said. He gave her his contact numbers on an index card and invited her to visit his wife if she ever felt unsafe. He returned later and gave her a stronger lock to bolster the sliding door that had been forced open.
“He was so mellow and calm, very helpful and very, very sweet,” she said last week. “We didn’t really know George at first, but after the break-in we talked to him on a daily basis. People were freaked out. It wasn’t just George calling police … we were calling police at least once a week.”
In September, a group of neighbors including Zimmerman approached the homeowners association with their concerns, she said. Zimmerman was asked to head up a new neighborhood watch. He agreed.
“PLEASE CONTACT OUR CAPTAIN”
Police had advised Bertalan to get a dog. She and her husband decided to move out instead, and left two days before the shooting. Zimmerman took the advice.
“He’d already had a mutt that he walked around the neighborhood every night – man, he loved that dog – but after that home invasion he also got a Rottweiler,” said Jorge Rodriguez, a friend and neighbor of the Zimmermans.
Around the same time, Zimmerman also gave Rodriguez and his wife, Audria, his contact information, so they could reach him day or night. Rodriguez showed the index card to Reuters. In neat cursive was a list of George and Shellie’s home number and cell phones, as well as their emails.
Less than two weeks later, another Twin Lakes home was burglarized, police reports show. Two weeks after that, a home under construction was vandalized.
The Retreat at Twin Lakes e-newsletter for February 2012 noted: “The Sanford PD has announced an increased patrol within our neighborhood … during peak crime hours.
“If you’ve been a victim of a crime in the community, after calling police, please contact our captain, George Zimmerman.”
EMMANUEL BURGESS – SETTING THE STAGE
On February 2, 2012, Zimmerman placed a call to Sanford police after spotting a young black man he recognized peering into the windows of a neighbor’s empty home, according to several friends and neighbors.
“I don’t know what he’s doing. I don’t want to approach him, personally,” Zimmerman said in the call, which was recorded. The dispatcher advised him that a patrol car was on the way. By the time police arrived, according to the dispatch report, the suspect had fled.
On February 6, the home of another Twin Lakes resident, Tatiana Demeacis, was burglarized. Two roofers working directly across the street said they saw two African-American men lingering in the yard at the time of the break-in. A new laptop and some gold jewelry were stolen. One of the roofers called police the next day after spotting one of the suspects among a group of male teenagers, three black and one white, on bicycles.
Police found Demeacis’s laptop in the backpack of 18-year-old Emmanuel Burgess, police reports show, and charged him with dealing in stolen property. Burgess was the same man Zimmerman had spotted on February 2.
Burgess had committed a series of burglaries on the other side of town in 2008 and 2009, pleaded guilty to several, and spent all of 2010 incarcerated in a juvenile facility, his attorney said. He is now in jail on parole violations.
Three days after Burgess was arrested, Zimmerman’s grandmother was hospitalized for an infection, and the following week his father was also admitted for a heart condition. Zimmerman spent a number of those nights on a hospital room couch.
Ten days after his father was hospitalized, Zimmerman noticed another young man in the neighborhood, acting in a way he found familiar, so he made another call to police.
“We’ve had some break-ins in my neighborhood, and there’s a real suspicious guy,” Zimmerman said, as Trayvon Martin returned home from the store.
The last time Zimmerman had called police, to report Burgess, he followed protocol and waited for police to arrive. They were too late, and Burgess got away.
This time, Zimmerman was not so patient, and he disregarded police advice against pursuing Martin.
“These assholes,” he muttered in an aside, “they always get away.”
After the phone call ended, several minutes passed when the movements of Zimmerman and Martin remain a mystery.
Moments later, Martin lay dead with a bullet in his chest.
Nero Obama Caesar and His Own Colosseum Games to Focus the People’s Attention from the Destruction of the State
Class warfare, war on women, war on corporations, Occupy, Trayvon Martin and black on white attacks, Obama has given the people “the games” in much like Nero Claudius Caesar did to the Romans as Rome burned. Where each one of these examples is fueled by pure hatred rather then the cause it declares, and shouldn’t be ignored, look to is pulling the strings to cause the society to burn down.
During his Tuesday evening broadcast, Glenn Beck took a deeper look at the disturbing trend of violence being perpetrated against whites in the name of “justice for Trayvon.”
Is Justice for Blacks and Whites Different? It is When it Comes to Hate Crimes. Especially if the Crime is Committed as a Mob
Beating of Alabama man not seen as hate crime, despite claim ‘Trayvon’ invoked
Asking the questions one week before the burnings, that media will be asking the day after
Pastor Youcef Naderkhani is under the death sentence in Iran for apostasy. (Converting from Islam) Where Pastor Youcef denies ever being Muslim, the accusations against him is that because Islam is in his “ancestry” any thing less then him publicly denouncing his current religion and declare himself Muslim, results in death by the state.
His death sentence has been delayed, and could happen any day. Media outcry, a bill resolution in the congress and even a White House statement may well have been the reason for the sustaining of his life, but there also seems to have been a threat from Pastor Terry Jones’ church of burning Qurans and images of Mohammad if Pastor Youcef isn’t released. Unlike any presidential statement or House resolution, this this comes with a deadline. On April 28, 2012 at 5pm EST, if Pastor Youcef has not been released, multiple Qurans and even images of Mohammad will be burned by Terry Jones and his church.
Unlike uprisings against American soldiers by muslims after a Quran burning, cartoon drawing of Mohammad or any reason they deem justifiable to burn, destroy and kill, this may have direct impact on Pastor Youcef’s life.
This is what I wanted to get answers to. Our American soldiers have to deal with attacks all the time by muslims that didn’t require something to incite them, but Pastor Youcef is hanging on by a thread and this may be the tipping point for his life.
In any “stand-off” where two sides have hostages, (Iran with Pastor Youcef and Pastor Terry Jones with the threat of burning Qurans and images) if one side “fires first” by taking out their hostage, there is no reason for the other side to keep their hostage with out penalty. This is the very heart of the question I wanted Pastor Terry Jones to answer.
I was able to get an interview with Pastor Terry Jones and his son Luke Jones while they were holding a protest rally in Sanford, Fl about justice for George Zimmerman and Trayvon Martin on Saturday April 20, 2012, one week before the rest of the media would be asking the same questions.
I guess I’m going to be able to post at least one of these type of stories per day now, it seems.
Get armed, stay armed. Better to be judged by 12 rather then carried by 6.
How, oh how is this one going to be spun to become justified? Was he “profiling”? Was he “following”, against the orders of a dispatch officer?
No wait that heading is wrong. If fact there have been not reports of such. But, we have yet another in a long string of attacks PROFILING a white person by a group of blacks, then FOLLOWING, then proceeding to attack and beat the white person all while screaming it’s in the name of Trayvon or admitting it to cops later.
Shooting in Sanford, FL – White Victim Called a Racial Slur, Shot At, Then Pistol Whipped, But then Arrested For 1st Attempted Murder: Attacker is Black
I’m sorry for having to link the videos. I much prefer to grab videos and post them through Youtube, because videos tend to just disappear.
You have a man (white) walking outside of his house to check out a noisy altercation, when he sees the situation decides to turn around and not get involved. You then have another man (black) seeing a white man being nosy and proceeds to pull a gun and aim it at the back of the white man who is walking away. It is questionable whether the black man fires at the white man based on witnesses. The black man proceeds to rush the white man from behind, call him a racial slur (what on earth could that be? If it was a white guy calling a black man a racial slur, we would all know what he said) and then pistol whip the white man.
At this time the white man does pull an illegally concealed gun (no concealed weapon permit) from the waist of his pants and proceeds to defend himself. Both men hide and take bunker positions. Witnesses say that the black man’s gun fell apart when he hit the white man. How a gun falls apart, I’m not sure. I would guess that witness saw the gun lose it’s clip. At which time witnesses say the black man, hunkering, was putting his gun back together (putting the clip back in). The white man decides to not hide and be gunned down by a black man that has already pointed a gun his way, possibly shot at him once already and pistol whipped him, by leaving his bunker position to neutralize the black man before the black man can do the same.
White man is arrested for 1st degree attempted murder because he survived and self defended
Does something seem messed up about this to anyone else?
Granted, Rose (the white guy) isn’t in the military or is a cop, but the concept of neutralize before your are neutralized is a universal concept.
Where is the reports that Long (the black guy) is being charged with pointing a weapon at someone, firing at someone, racial profiling, assault and battery with a gun (felony) and let’s not forget a federal hate crime?
With ABC News’ release of the George Zimmerman photo showing blood flowing freely from his head, the question becomes whether Angela Corey, the prosecutor in the case, had access to the photo before charging Zimmerman with second-degree murder.
The arrest affidavit did not mention the photograph, or the bleeding, gashes, and bruises on Zimmermans’ head. Professor Alan Dershowitz of Harvard Law School stated upon release of the arrest affidavit that it was “so thin that it won’t make it past a judge on a second degree murder charge … everything in the affidavit is completely consistent with a defense of self-defense.”
After the release of the photo, however, Dershowitz went much further, telling Breitbart News that if the prosecutors did have the photo and didn’t mention it in the affidavit, that would constitute a “grave ethical violation,” since affidavits are supposed to contain “all relevant information.”
“An affidavit that willfully misstates undisputed evidence known to the prosecution is not only unethical but borders on perjury because an affiant swears to tell not only the truth, but the whole truth, and suppressing an important part of the whole truth is a lie.”
When asked if it made a difference whether the prosecution had the bloody photograph at the time they charged Zimmerman, Dershowitz responded, “We do know that there were earlier photographs before the affidavit was done that strongly suggested blood on the back of the head, and we know the police had first access to him, so if there was blood they [the prosecution] would know about it …
“I’ve had cases in Florida against prosecutors,” Dershowitz said, “and this is not the first time they have willfully omitted exculpatory evidence. It’s a continuing problem. Here, it’s not only immoral, but stupid. The whole country is watching. What do they benefit from having half-truths in an affidavit?”
Dershowitz added, “I’m not taking sides, but I’m insisting that both sides play by the rules, and so far the prosecution is not playing by the rules.”
I am getting fed up with this “Zimmerman was at fault because he followed” argument. Lets really look at what your claiming.
Trayvon Martin was justified in attempted murder because Zimmerman followed him. Zimmerman made Trayvon attack Zimmerman.
Please, next time you feel that someone may be following you or possibly “eyeing” you from across the room, turn to them, sucker punch them in the nose, then proceed to tackle them and slam their head into the floor. Let’s see if the courts justify your actions.
This is the ONLY argument being put forth by those who want to see Zimmerman hang
As for those justifying there views of Zimmerman because of questions like: “Where are the pictures”, “Where are the medical records?”, “Where is the autopsy report?” or “Where is the evidence in general?”, why don’t you ask the state of Florida’s prosecutor’s office.
Today’s bond trial gave the first opportunity beyond the evidence-lacking affidavit to put forth evidence damaging against Zimmerman’s account. The state provided zero, na da, zilch, absolutely no evidence. Do you really think that the state wants Zimmerman on bond? We can surmise that the state has no evidence at all (which is untrue) or that any and all evidence that the state has corroborates Zimmerman’s account.
The state is only running with the “Zimmerman profiled” and “Zimmerman followed” arguments. These also seem to be the only responses you get from anyone on the street that has convicted Zimmerman.
STEP 1 – Now that Zimmerman is in custody, he has a “first appearance” before a judge
* Zimmerman had his first appearance at 1:30 p.m. Thursday April 12, 2012.
“Stand your ground” vs. self-defense:
“Stand your ground” argument
Neighborhood watch co-captain George Zimmerman sees a stranger in the Sanford community. He calls 911, pursues Martin to “keep eyes” on the suspect so to be able to relay proper information to the police and the operator cautions him not to follow.
Partially relevant. Following Martin may weaken the self-defense argument, but only if evidence is provided that shows Zimmerman initiated a confrontation with Martin. Prosecution also has to provide evidence that Zimmerman continued pursuit of Martin which is not currently supported by the 911 call, in that Zimmerman can clearly be heard ceasing his pursuit seconds after being suggested to do so and responds with “ok”.
Not relevant. Following somebody is not provocation to get punched.
Zimmerman is carrying a concealed weapon.
Not relevant. Outside of Zimmerman’s legal right to carry a firearm, Zimmerman was also not “on duty” in the capacity as a neighborhood watchmen when this situation occurred. If he had been “on duty”, it would have been a violation of Neighborhood Watch code of conduct, which may have resulted in Zimmerman’s dismissal from the Neighborhood Watch, but would still not have been a crime.
Zimmerman allegedly confronts Trayvon Martin.
Relevant. Under Florida law if you are the first aggressor in a confrontation, you forfeit the right to self-defense. The prosecution would have to provide evidence that Zimmerman was the first physical aggressor. Again, following some one doesn’t fulfill the definition as being the first aggressor. Following somebody is not provocation to get punched.
Zimmerman claims he was returning to his truck when Martin confronted him, then punched him.
Relevant. According to George Zimmerman’s version, he was punched without provocation. Following somebody is not provocation to get punched. While on the ground being pinned and having his (Zimmerman’s) head slammed into the concrete, he couldn’t retreat even under the old law if he wanted to.
Relevant. This is where Martin can stand his ground and not retreat into the car.
According to Zimmerman, Martin punches him and brings him to the ground.
Relevant. “The real issue [in Stand Your Ground] is what happens around the 60 seconds prior to the shooting.” (Ed Griffith, a spokesman for the Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office,Tampa Bay Times)
Someone is heard in the 911 tapes calling for help.
Relevant. If it’s Zimmerman, it bolsters self-defense. If it’s Martin, it undermines self-defense.
Relevant. If it’s Zimmerman, it bolsters self-defense. It presents Zimmerman using deadly force as a last resort, in that, in the 911 tapes a person can be heard screaming for help for 45 seconds. This doesn’t include the amount of time that preceded the beginning of the recording, that caused the caller to make the 911 call. This would not support a claim that Zimmerman hunted Martin down.
If it’s Martin, it undermines self-defense.
Aspects of the prosecution’s arguments that George Zimmerman pursued Trayvon Martin do not meet the required “First Aggressor” standards that would void ‘stand your ground’. Furthermore the argument that following anyone deletes a person’s ability to self defend is ridicules. This would mean that Zimmerman would’ve had to have fore-knowledge that Trayvon was going to attack him and that he was choosing to place himself in peril. All citizens have an expectation, if legally within property, not to be attacked by another person. Just as words or an argument has never been a justification for physical aggression in the courts, so too is pursuing a person not justification. If this was so, there would be a lot of cases dealing with a member of the media being physically attacked because they asked questions that angered the attacker and/or pursuing the attacker in attempt to gain an interview or answers. The cases would be thrown out because the media person basically “had it coming to them”. This is obviously not the case. In a nut shell, no matter what your “feelings” are, no one has justifiable rights to attack someone because they are annoying, saying things that anger you or following. Trayvon Martin meets none of the aspects of ‘stand your ground’ besides having the right to be where he was.
Zimmerman’s police call: The “pursuit” starts at 2:05
911 calls before the shot:
STEP 5 – Pretrial
* Both the prosecution and defense could file a slew of pretrial motions in the case that deal with anything and everything from turning over documents and evidence to keeping certain evidence out at trial. It is too early to tell.
STEP 6 – Trial
* Zimmerman is charged with second-degree murder.
To convict someone of second-degree murder prosecutors have to prove several things beyond a reasonable doubt.
– First, that Trayvon Martin is dead.
– Second, that George Zimmerman’s criminal act caused Trayvon Martin’s death.
– Third, that Zimmerman knew his actions were reasonably certain to kill, that he committed the act with a depraved mind and the act itself was indifferent to human life.
NOTE: Prosecutors do not have to prove that Zimmerman intended to kill Trayvon Martin.
Zimmerman could assert self-defense at trial, but the burden is on the prosecution to prove that it wasn’t self defense beyond a reasonable doubt.
The jury will have to consider the circumstances surrounding the killing and decide whether it was second-degree murder or a justifiable use of deadly force.
The jury could also look at lesser-included offenses. At some point during or after the trial, the attorneys will meet with the judge in what is called a “charging conference” to argue which legal instruction the judge will give the jurors. We will not know which lesser-included offenses will be given to the jury until then.
* It is too early to tell what lesser charges the evidence may support, but one possibility is manslaughter.
To convict someone of manslaughter, prosecutors have to prove two things beyond a reasonable doubt:
– that Trayvon Martin is dead AND
– that Zimmerman’s acts caused Trayvon Martin’s death
NOTE: Manslaughter does not require that it be an intentional killing, only that the act that caused death was intentional and not justified or excusable.
Zimmerman could assert self-defense at trial, but the burden is on the prosecution to prove that it wasn’t self defense beyond a reasonable doubt.
The jury will have to consider the circumstances surrounding the killing and decide whether it was manslaughter or a justifiable use of deadly force.
NOTE: In the charging document, Corey alleges that Zimmerman killed Martin with a gun. That is important, because if the jury does convict Zimmerman of the lesser charge of manslaughter, using a gun increases the penalty that Zimmerman would face on a manslaughter conviction.
If convicted of second-degree murder, Zimmerman faces a sentence of 25 years to life in prison without parole.
Now if and when Zimmerman is acquitted, Eric Holder and the full force of the United States Attorney General’s office will come down upon Zimmerman with racial profiling charges. This, like many other lawsuits from the government with unlimited funds, is meant as a ceremonial crushing and punishment of Zimmerman for being found not guilty. Zimmerman will be required to put forth a defense against Federal charges that is meant to drain any and all funds, as it will be dragged out as long as possible.
Zimmerman has been found guilty in the media and by some high ranking members of government so he will be punished by one mean or the other, even if is found not guilty in criminal, civil and federal courts.
Y! Big Story: After Zimmerman arrest, questions about ‘stand your ground’ By Vera H-C Chan | Trending Now
Rallies of ‘Justice for Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman’ hosted by Terry Jones and the New Black Panthers Armed Rally Scheduled for the Same Day in Sanford, FL
as SPLC has reported:
April 21 is the key date in this. Also on April 21 Pastor Terry Jones will be holding a rally at the Sanford, FL Courthouse as I have posted previously : Pastor Terry Jones to host George Zimmerman rally in Sanford, FL
This blogger honestly doesn’t expect to see this Armed Militant Black group rally, because on two other occasions where the New Black Panthers were supposed to make their presence known at a rally, they were no-shows. I do believe there will be counter protests to Pastor Terry Jones, completely ignoring the message of Terry Jones rally of “justice to both Zimmerman and Trayvon”, but rather, attacking the pastor instead and calling for the death of Zimmerman. As for the rally by Terry Jones his “Stand up America” group, that is defiantly going to happen.
…more to come
…And we Race-Baiters Would Have Gotten Away With It, If It Wasn’t For Those Meddling Kids…..Oh and the Evidence;Zimmerman Bloody Head Picture Surfaces
This case is beginning to appear more and more like any debate between a common sense conservative and an irrational-lie weaving liberal. The concept of “tell enough lies, over and over again, and people start believing them to be true” is being revealed. The only response that can be done, when light is shown on the lies and revealed to to be that… lies, is to back track to more irrational arguments.
“Where are the wounds? Where is the blood?” hmmmmm “Oh well, ok so Zimmerman did have blood and wounds. Ok, well then we now argue that Zimmerman made Trayvon start beating on Zimmerman.”
“Zimmerman Made Trayvon do it!” I kid you not, That is the new stance after more and more evidence begins to trickle out that Zimmerman had the wounds to back up his story of the events and that Trayvon, except for the gunshot wound, had no injuries.
Had Zimmerman not profiled a person slinking around the buildings appearing as someone up to no good. “Had he not followed him”. This is all they have. They know Trayvon beat the crap out of Zimmerman but they need it to be Zimmerman’s fault. So Zimmerman made Trayvon turn into a raging monster.
SMELL THE BOVINE FECAL MATTER!!
How many times as a kid did the excuse “he made do it” work for you?
Can we some how tie Zimmerman eating corn flakes for breakfast to the killing? “If only he hadn’t eaten corn flakes for breakfast” or “had he only decided to go the the grocery store an hour later” or how about this gem (that lets face it, this is really what they believe) “If only Zimmerman hadn’t fought back and just allowed Trayvon to kill him”
Pastor Terry Jones, the infamous Quran burner, will be in Sanford, FL Saturday (tomorrow) for a rally in support of justice for both Zimmerman and Trayvon. This blogger will be there in a media format to capture as much as possible. I predict a mad, frothing counter protest, expressing the truth of their motives. We’ll see.
…more to come
Now it’s going to be interesting to see what kind of counter-protests/rally is going to happen. I’m, for the life of me, attempting to find pictures, articles or any eye witnesses to a counter protest/rally to any of the NAACP/Al Sharpton/Jesse Jackson sponsored rallies. So the “Constitutional Rights for George Zimmerman and Trayvon Martin” people seem to believe in the First Amendment, let’s see if the “Death to Zimmerman” group of people do.
Brought to you by the world of the Anti Propaganda The People’s Cube
This is just to good!
As the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Titanic approaches, new shocking evidence has surfaced that a racist vendetta was at the epicenter of the disaster.
NBC News is about to release a mostly unedited Morse Code transcript of messages between the Newfoundland Emergency Operator and the Titanic’s Captain, George White, moments before the fatal altercation:
Operator: Newfoundland SOS, what is your emergency?
Titanic: This is George White, skipper of the Titanic. I’m on neighborhood watch in the North Atlantic. It’s dark out and I think I see an iceberg.
Operator: An iceberg? Can you describe it?
Titanic: It’s big…. there’s no moon out tonight… It looks black!
By Chris Francescani
(Reuters) – Neighbors of George Zimmerman say he had bandages on his nose and head the day after he shot dead Trayvon Martin, supporting statements by the neighborhood watch volunteer that he was beaten in a confrontation with the black Florida teenager.
The extent of Zimmerman’s injuries could be crucial to his legal defense under Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” self-defense law, which allows the use of deadly force when someone has the reasonable belief he could face death or great bodily harm.
Police said Zimmerman, who has been charged with second-degree murder in the racially charged case, was bleeding from the nose and the back of his head and was treated by medics before being taken to Sanford police station after the February 26 shooting.
But public doubts were later raised by the release of a grainy surveillance video from the police station in which no injuries were readily visible.
Zimmerman later sought medical treatment for injuries including a broken nose, his former lawyers have said.
Jorge Rodriguez, Zimmerman’s next-door neighbor, told Reuters that when he saw Zimmerman the day after the incident, “he had two big, butterfly bandages on the back of his head, and another big bandage…on the bridge of his nose.” He was talking to a police detective in his driveway.
Rodriguez’s wife Audria also said she saw the bandages and a third neighbor, who spoke only on condition of anonymity, agreed with the Rodriguez couple’s account. “I saw two bandages on the back of his head, and his nose was all swollen up,” said the witness, who had watched from a nearby second-floor window.
The neighbors spoke to Reuters on Sunday and Monday, saying they felt they owed him their public support after he was charged with second-degree murder.
The neighbors said they spoke to Sanford police and the FBI in their investigations but did not recall speaking to the office of special prosecutor Angela Corey, who charged Zimmerman with second-degree murder.
Corey’s office and Sanford police declined to comment on the matter and Zimmerman’s attorney Mark O’Mara did not return calls for comment.
You didn’t hear about this is the media, but on the weekend of March 24th and March 25th at least seven white people were brutally beaten by mobs of blacks in Grand Rapids, MI. Five of the victims filed police reports. At least two other victims exist, and there are probably others. The local media has refused to report the cruel attacks and the authorities are resisting any serious charges.
I talked with one of the victims, 37 year old Jacob Palasek. He is a full time student and does computer work part time. He was attacked by a wolf pack of thugs on the corner of Sixth Street and Broadway in Grand Rapids, Michigan just after midnight on March 25th. The location is a mix of stores, offices, and residential neighborhoods. Jacob lives near where he was attacked.
As he was walking to his apartment, he saw three black males loitering. One was on a bicycle. The suspect on the bicycle rode up beside him. Suddenly the thug smashed him in the side of the head with a chain. He was hit two or three more times in the head with the chain before he broke loose and ran to the nearest home. He knocked on the door, hoping the owner would call the police.
All three of the black males then attacked him on the porch. They yelled “this is what you deserve you white piece of shit.” Jacob was hit in the head with the large chain more times. Jacob broke free again and hid behind a dumpster. The attackers initially chased him, but broke their pursuit and walked away. There were some cars driving by and the thugs may have thought a driver was calling 911.
All seven known victims were attacked within about six blocks of where Jacob was attacked. The victims were in their 30s, 40s, and 50s. Some of the victims were attacked during the day in broad daylight.
Jacob believes he could have died if he was hit with the chain more times. He still has bad headaches and has not been able to work since the attack. Jacob doesn’t have insurance and can’t afford the correct medical treatment. His landlord is now threatening to evict him from his apartment. Since he was not able to work, he has missed a rent payment. A victim’s relief fund is planning to give him a small amount of money. However, police did not even tell him the fund existed so he applied very late. He is still waiting on the help.
The police listed aggravated assault with a weapon and ethnic intimidation, Michigan’s state hate crimes law, on the police report. Jacob identified two of the perpetrators. However, police have told Jacob that the thugs will get off easy because they are only 17. Police told him that the thugs will not serve time in prison for the brutal hate crimes.
Police said that the suspects will not be tried as adults. They will only face juvenile boot camp instead of prison. A detective told Jacob that they believe all the attacks were racially motivated. The detective also told Jacob that he believed the Trayvon Martin media frenzy is what prompted the attacks. Jacob also believed that the thugs were seeking revenge for Trayvon Martin before the detective confirmed this belief.
To add insult to injury, not a single media outlet in all of Grand Rapids reported the brutal hate crimes. Jacob has contacted the local paper and his local news affiliates repeatedly. None will report the story. He has also contacted numerous politicians, none of whom has helped.
He even wrote to US Rep. John Conyers. Conyers is a black US rep from Detroit who was a co-sponsor of the Federal Hate Crimes Act. The exact stated purpose of the Federal hate crimes act was to help people like the victims in Grand Rapids. When someone is a victim of a violent racially motivated attack and the local authorities won’t pursue serious penalties, the DOJ is supposed to pick up the slack and apply Federal hate crimes charges.
Eric Holder, who heads the DOJ, says he is investigating ways to charge George Zimmerman with a Federal crime. Think Eric Holder will concern himself with the white victims of horrific hate crime mob attacks in Grand Rapids?
For the past two years black on white racially motivated mob attacks have been occurring in the United States weekly. Local media outlets typically only have little blurbs about them and censor all mention of race. Numerous major media outlets now openly admit to having a policy of censoring black crime, so as not to “stigmatize” black people. Political correctness supersedes public safety. The response from the authorities has been one of constant downplaying. None of the perpetrators are ever charged with a hate crime.
Now it has reached a point where the media in some markets are refusing to even report black on white hate crimes. How many other horrific black on white hate crime mob attacks are going on that we have never heard about?
Arm yourselves. Better to be Judged by 12 rather then carried by 6 Pallbearers. Because when seconds matter, police are only minutes away.
By Dave Blount at Moonbattery
Liberals have stridently wondered just what George Zimmerman thought he was doing, patrolling his neighborhood at night, poking into the business of put-upon Saint Skittles (who as it turns out had gotten in trouble at school for having a bag full of women’s jewelry and a burglary tool).
The answer: attempting to prevent stories like this !!
Good thing the kids didn’t encounter any community watch captains. They might have gotten hassled.
<WyldGoose> My only complaint is why are we not seeing pictures from the media of these fine upstanding young men when they were 12 years old?
As per Breitbart
A well-known, mainstream media-vetted college professor named Dr. Boyce Watkins states that it’s time for Trayvon Martin’s parents to “step to the side,” out of an apparent fear that “being honest” could negatively affect the race-baiting political agenda that Obama allies like Al Sharpton have carefully crafted.
Dr. Watkin’s stark admonishment, “Get her off the stage right now,“ came in a recent blog post that shows the goal of the politicization of the Martin shooting is not truth or justice.
Who is Dr. Boyce Watkins? He’s a professor at Syracuse University and his website shows that he’s been a frequent guest on cable news shows, including CNN’s Anderson Cooper 360 and MSNBC’s Keith Olbermann. He is also a frequent speaker on black issues, and his site shows his speeches have earned high praise from well-known leaders of the resentment-driven civil rights movement, including Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson, and Michael Eric Dyson.
In his bluntly-titled article, Note to Trayvon’s Mother: It’s Time for You to Step to the Side, Dr. Watkins referred to the recent Today Show appearance by Trayvon Masrtin’s mother where she said:
Dr. Watkin’s reaction is pretty stunning:
Note that Dr. Watkins is not concerned with the veracity of the statement but rather how the statement affects the politically motivated prosecution of George Zimmerman. In fact, later in the article Dr. Watkins explicitly says that even if the assessment of the shooting as an accident was honest, it should not of been said.
Which begs the question: disastrous to what? Being honest and telling the truth is certainly not disastrous to the goal of actual justice. However, justice is clearly not the goal of men like Sharpton and Watkins. In fact, as Watkins admits in the final paragraph of this piece, this really isn’t about Trayvon Martin at all. He says:
In other words, thanks for letting the professional race-baiters like Al Sharpton use your son, but his death has now served our purpose, so please shut up.
FOR THE RECORD
Exclusive: Molotov Mitchell has close encounter with local cops
The name of Trayvon Martin was invoked again Wednesday night in Gainesville during an attack by a group that police say stomped on a white man who was scuffling with a black robbery suspect on the Bo Diddley Community Plaza. The robbery suspect, Carl Milton Babb, 50, had been released from prison earlier in the day after serving more than two years in prison for the same crime he is accused of committing Wednesday — snatching a purse from a woman near the downtown plaza.
According to a Gainesville Police Department arrest report, Babb approached a woman eating dinner at the Lunchbox on the plaza at about 8:50 p.m. and asked her for a light.
When she said she didn’t have one, Babb took off with her purse, which contained her $500 cellphone, according to the report.
The woman’s dinner companion and another person took off after Babb.
When her friend caught up with Babb, according to the police report, Babb punched him in the face and grabbed his hair, but he was able to keep Babb pinned down, according to the report.
The scene attracted a crowd, and a number of people on the plaza approached Babb and the Good Samaritan, who tried to explain that Babb had just stolen his friend’s purse.
GPD spokeswoman Cpl. Angelina Valuri said some members of the crowd shouted “Trayvon!” and that at least three of members of the crowd began stomping on the hands of the woman’s friend to force him to let go of Babb.
Babb, who was listed as homeless, was arrested by police a few blocks away.
Valuri said some witnesses to the robbery tried to calm down the crowd, affirming the victim’s story that he was trying to stop a man accused of a crime and retrieve his friend’s purse.
“The crowd was acting off of emotion without knowing all of the facts of this case,” Valuri said, adding that investigators didn’t immediately know the names or races of the men or women who stomped on the victim.
It was the second attack in the past week in Gainesville in which assailants yelled the first name of Trayvon Martin, the unarmed black 17-year-old who was shot and killed by crime-watch volunteer George Zimmerman as the teen walked back to his father’s girlfriend’s apartment in Sanford on Feb. 26.
State Attorney Angela Corey had announced at 6 p.m. Wednesday in Jacksonville, less than three hours before the incident on Gainesville’s downtown plaza, that Zimmerman had been charged with second-degree murder in Martin’s death.
H/T Pat Dollard