On Friday afternoon the jury for the murder case of Trayvon Martin, in Florida, retired to decide the fate of George Zimmerman, the accused facing charges of second-degree murder of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.
The jury retired to deliberate following the closing statements of Zimmerman’s Irish American attorney Mark O’Mara who told the jurors that much of what happened on that rainy night on February 26, 2012 remains unknown.
Zimmerman, a volunteer neighborhood watch members, maintains that Martin was acting suspicious and after a physical attack he was forced to shoot the teenager in self defence. The prosecution argues that he targeted the black teenager and shot him in cold blood.
O’Mara told the jury that having listened to three weeks of testimony in the court their only possible conclusion would be ““innocence. Pure, unadulterated innocence”.
He asked them not to try to “fill in the blanks” or “connect dots”.
The attorney said the prosecutions had created a false caricature of Zimmerman, as “a crazy guy walking the neighborhood looking for people to harass.” He added that there is no evidence that Zimmerman had “ill will, spite or hatred” against Martin.
He added that there was no evidence of racial hatred either. Zimmerman has white and Hispanic parents and Martin was African American.
O’Mara pointed out that Zimmerman had called 911 to report MArtin’s suspicious behavior he did not say “I hate these young, black males.”
To find Zimmerman guilty of second-degree murder the jury must find that the accused had a “depraved mind” and “ill intent”. They will also consider the less offense of manslaughter.