首页  | 新闻播报

Zimmerman acquitted in slaying

中国日报网 2013-07-15 10:40

Get Flash Player

Download

After a year and a half of living as a hermit, George Zimmerman emerged from a Florida courthouse a free man, cleared of all charges in the shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.

His brother said the former neighborhood watch volunteer was still processing the reality he wouldn't serve prison time for the killing, which Zimmerman, 29, has maintained was an act of self-defense. A jury found him not guilty of second-degree murder late Saturday night and declined to convict him on a lesser charge of manslaughter.

However, with many critics angry over his acquittal, his freedom will likely be limited.

Demonstrators upset with the verdict protested mostly peacefully in Florida and Atlanta overnight, but some broke windows and vandalized a police squad car in Oakland during protests in four California cities, authorities said.

"He's going to be looking over his shoulder the rest of his life," Robert Zimmerman Jr. said during an interview on CNN.

Martin's killing in February 2012 unleashed furious debate across the US over racial profiling, self-defense and equal justice. Protesters across the country lashed out against police in the Orlando suburb of Sanford, outraged that it took 44 days for Zimmerman to be arrested. Many, including Martin's parents, claimed Zimmerman had racially profiled the unarmed black teen. Zimmerman identifies himself as Hispanic.

Six anonymous female jurors - all but one of them white - considered nearly three weeks of often wildly conflicting testimony over who was the aggressor on the rainy night the 17-year-oldwas shot while walking through the gated townhouse community where he was staying and where Zimmerman lived.

They deliberated more than 15 hours over two days before announcing late on Saturday night that they had reached a verdict.

Defense attorney Mark O'Mara said in August that Zimmerman had been living "like a hermit", and he and his wife, Shellie, were not working because they feared for their safety.

After Saturday's verdict, police, officials and civil rights leaders urged peace and told protesters not to resort to violence. While defense attorneys said they were thrilled with the outcome, O'Mara suggested Zimmerman's safety will be an ongoing concern.

"There still is a fringe element that wants revenge," O'Mara said. "They won't listen to a verdict of not guilty."

Those watching reacted strongly when the verdict was announced. Martin's mother and father were not in the courtroom when it was read, but supporters of his family who had gathered outside yelled, "No! No!" upon learning of the verdict.

Andrew Perkins, 55, a black resident of Sanford, angrily asked outside the courthouse, "How the hell did they find him not guilty?"

(中国日报网英语点津 Helen 编辑)

 

About the broadcaster:

Lance Crayon is a videographer and editor with China Daily. Since living in Beijing he has worked for China Radio International (CRI) and Global Times. Before moving to China he worked in the film industry in Los Angeles as a talent agent and producer. He has a B.A. in English from the University of Texas at Arlington.

中国日报网英语点津版权说明:凡注明来源为“中国日报网英语点津:XXX(署名)”的原创作品,除与中国日报网签署英语点津内容授权协议的网站外,其他任何网站或单位未经允许不得非法盗链、转载和使用,违者必究。如需使用,请与010-84883561联系;凡本网注明“来源:XXX(非英语点津)”的作品,均转载自其它媒体,目的在于传播更多信息,其他媒体如需转载,请与稿件来源方联系,如产生任何问题与本网无关;本网所发布的歌曲、电影片段,版权归原作者所有,仅供学习与研究,如果侵权,请提供版权证明,以便尽快删除。
订阅和关注
人气排行