Zimmerman Acquittal Sparks Nationwide Protests
Religion TodayReligious persecution, missions, Christianity around the world
- 2013 Jul 15
Protesters across the United States have taken to the streets, calling for federal charges after a Florida jury acquitted neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman of murder in the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. According to CBN News, the demonstrations signal that while the trial may be over, the case will have a lasting impact for months to come. Meanwhile, the Justice Department announced Sunday that it is considering filing its own charges against Zimmerman now that he's been acquitted in the state case. "And the reality is in these types of cases where there are very serious questions, we know there will be a state phase," NAACP president Ben Jealous said. "There will be a civil phase almost assuredly and then there will be a federal civil rights phase." But experts say federal prosecutors face a high bar, proving beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman acted because of Martin's race. Saturday's not guilty verdict means Zimmerman's lawyers will pick up his lawsuit against NBC News. Producers there mis-edited his 911 call; the abridged version plays up a racial angle and is said to have convicted him in the court of public opinion. Some experts say media reports handled the case poorly from the start, turning a complicated case into a simple one and focusing on negative information about Zimmerman. His attorney blasted the media for turning Zimmerman into a monster. Meanwhile, there are concerns for Zimmerman's safety after he has received hundreds of death threats. Martin's family is also in an undisclosed location because of threats against them.