The FBI may have enough evidence to charge Trayvon Martin's killer with a hate crime. George Zimmerman was arrested in April and charged with 2nd degree murder in the February shooting death of the 17-year-old Miami high school student.
Zimmerman, 28, told police he shot the unarmed teen in self defense following a brief altercation. According to WFTV, the FBI is actively questioning residents of the Retreat of Twin Lakes community, and they could charge Zimmerman with a hate crime even if he is acquitted of killing Trayvon Martin.
He could face the death penalty if found guilty of a hate crime.
New information reveals Zimmerman's story was inconsistent in the hours following the shooting.
Zimmerman initially told Sanford, Florida investigators that Trayvon ran away after he was spotted. He said Trayvon doubled back and began circling Zimmerman's SUV while he was on the phone with 911.
But Zimmerman later told police that Trayvon came up behind him and knocked him to the ground with one punch.
Meanwhile, Zimmerman's father, Robert Zimmerman, says his life will never be the same. "It's been unimaginable," he told the Miami Herald in an interview on Monday.
The 64-year-old former magistrate said he stays in hotel rooms under assumed names and pays cash to avoid detection. "All of a sudden, it's pack up what you can and leave," he said.
The elder Zimmerman said his family didn't intentionally mislead the court during the bond hearing by withholding the fact that his son had over $200,000 in donations from the public.
"George didn't have $200,000 in his pocket," Zimmerman said. "George is not living large."
He said Trayvon was killed because he made "a bad decision" when he struggled with George for his licensed handgun.
"No parent can completely control their child. I believe Trayvon made a bad decision," he said. "I would have liked to see Trayvon change his life and get married and achieve his dreams. He made a decision that changed that, and things didn’t work out for anybody."
*(bold emphasis mine)
Thanks to loyal reader Ernest O. for the tip!
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