The parents of Trayvon Martin said they are in shock and disbelief over the verdict that acquitted the man who shot their teenage son.
“Is this the intent for the justice system to have for victims,” Sybrina Fulton, Martin’s mother, said on the Today show Thursday morning. “Trayvon wasn’t doing anything wrong.”
“We felt in our hearts that we were going to get a conviction,” Tracy Martin, Trayvon Martin’s father, said. “We thought that the killer of our unarmed child was going to be convicted of the crime that he committed.”
It is the parents’ first day speaking out on live television since a jury over the weekend found George Zimmerman not guilty on second-degree murder and manslaughter charges in the Feb. 26, 2012, shooting death of Martin in a gated community in a small suburb of Orlando. Zimmerman had pleaded not guilty to the charges claiming that he shot Martin in self-defense after the unarmed teen attacked him. Seventeen months after the killing, Zimmerman walked from a Florida court a free man.
In the hours and days following the verdict, mostly peaceful protests spread across the country. The NAACP and other civil rights groups have also called for the Justice Department to bring federal hate crimes charges against Zimmerman, saying that he racially profiled the teen before stalking and then killing him.
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