The Justice Department has ruled they will not be filing charges against George Zimmerman for violating Trayvon Martin’s civil rights.
Not Enough Evidence
Thursday marks three years exactly that George Zimmerman shot and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. The Justice Department met with Martin’s family to announce there was not enough evidence to prove that Zimmerman intentionally violated Martin’s civil rights.
“Although the department has determined that this matter cannot be prosecuted federally, it is important to remember that this incident resulted in the tragic loss of a teenager’s life,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta of the Civil Rights Division. “Our decision not to pursue federal charges does not condone the shooting that resulted in the death of Trayvon Martin and is based solely on the high legal standard applicable to these cases.”
State Charges for Zimmerman
In July 2013 a jury acquitted Zimmerman of state-level murder and manslaughter charges, citing the reason that prosecutors did not have enough evidence to prove he was guilty. One juror in that trial went on to say, “as the law was read to me, if you have no proof that he killed him intentionally, you can’t say he’s guilty.”
Justice Department Opens Investigation Into Zimmerman
Meanwhile the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division and FBI opened their own investigation into the incident, noting “experienced federal prosecutors” would determine “whether the evidence reveals a prosecutable violation” of federal law.
In November 2013, Attorney General Eric Holder said the case against Zimmerman “in substantial part was resolved” with the jury’s acquittal months prior.
Source: ABC News, Trayvon Martin: DOJ Announces No Charges Against George Zimmerman, February 24, 2015
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