Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Trayvon Martin Update

Since I posted about Trayvon yesterday in the early afternoon, there have been several new developments. First, and hopefully most promising, the United States Department of Justice's Civil Rights division has become involved in investigating the case, as announced yesterday in the late afternoon.  This followed the Congressional Black Caucus joining the calling for further investigation, on top of all the hew and furor, saying they were concerned that Trayvon's death was the result of a hate crime. Federal interest in the goings on in Sanford are also signified by the FBI's involvement in investigating. And, since the case was going all federal, our own goodly Governor Rick Scott decided that, yeah, maybe the Florida Department of Law Enforcement should look into this, because you know, it's looking kinda shady and problematic down there in Sanford. 

Much discussion has ensued about the NRA backed "Stand Your Ground" self-defense law in Florida, which may possibly allow George Zimmerman get away with what many feel is at a minimum manslaughter, or 2nd degree murder. "Stand Your Ground," a controversial variant of the Castle Doctorine, permits self-defense, irrespective of location, with no obligation to retreat. State Senator Oscar Braynon, who serves the Miami Gardens district in which Trayvon Martin lived, is calling for hearings on "Stand Your Ground". But those *cough* special interests that got it passed in the first place are likely to find quiet means of diffusing that unless this issue remains at the fore in the media.

Also, the Seminole County Sheriff's Office has released more 911 calls made by George Zimmerman in the past. Interestingly, four of six calls referred to concerns about black people loitering or in his neighborhood (which, was, mind you, an integrated neighborhood). Zimmerman's calls were often formulaic, following the same script that initiated his call to 911 the fateful night of Trayvon's death: "there have been a lot of break-ins in my neighborhood...."

I have not found a web link for the full audio of these other 911 calls, but you can watch this video, and in particular start listening around 2:00 minutes, although the whole video is a good summary of the current investigation.

All I continue to think about is a 17 year old boy who wanted to go out for candy and ended up dead that Sunday night...

© Bright Nepenthe, 2012

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