Trayvon Martin shot, killed 1 year ago in Sanford

Published On: Feb 26 2013 03:54:54 PM EST
Updated On: Feb 26 2013 10:07:29 PM EST

VIDEO: A look in to the Stand Your Ground Law and task force.

SANFORD, Fla. -

It's been one year since neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman fatally shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Sanford.

On Feb. 26, 2012, Zimmerman spotted Martin walking through his neighborhood, which is a gated community.

Martin was walking back to a house he was staying at after a trip to a convenience store. Zimmerman started to follow him because he thought he looked suspicious.

Despite a police dispatcher telling him "you don't have to do that," Zimmerman got out of his truck to pursue Martin.

Trayvon Martin George Zimmerman They got into a fight, and Martin was shot.

Zimmerman was eventually charged with second-degree murder but has pleaded not guilty. He says Martin attacked him and that he shot the teen in self-defense.

Zimmerman's trial is set for June.

Meanwhile, Martin's family is marking the one-year anniversary of his shooting death with a candlelight vigil in New York City.

Martin's parents, Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, are scheduled to take part in an event Tuesday evening at 6 p.m. in Union Square Park, along with their attorneys and others. A moment of silence was scheduled for 7:17 p.m.

Where does 'stand your ground' law stand now?

The shooting set off a national outcry over issues of race as well as "stand your ground" laws.

Despite a task force report ordered by Gov. Rick Scott that the stand your ground law should remain on the books with only minor changes, state lawmakers say they will continue to seek repeal of the law.

Some changes are almost a certainty when lawmakers begin their annual session next week.

Martin's mother says something needs to change.

"I am not absolutely sure that the police knew what the stand your ground law was," Fulton said.

In its report, the task force spends a great deal of time telling lawmakers it needs to define criminal activity so the law is applied evenly across the state.

The task force wants to limit neighborhood watch volunteers to observing and reporting potential activity to the police. It also specifically says in the report it doesn't want neighborhood watch volunteers pursuing or provoking potential suspects.

State Rep. Alan Williams says he is pushing forward will a full-scale repeal of stand your ground.

"It's about really keeping our community safe, not allowing folks to hide behind the screen of stand your ground while they're being vigilantes," Williams said.

Four other bills have also been introduced to repeal or modify the law. But Unified Sportsmen of Florida's Marion Hammer says the task force was clear.

"In their recommendations clearly track the view of the people," Hammer said.

Zimmerman has an April 22nd court date to determine if he really was standing his ground.

Comments

The views expressed below are not those of News4Jax or its affiliated companies. By clicking on "Post," you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and your comment is in compliance with such terms. Readers, please help keep this discussion respectful and on topic by flagging comments that are offensive or inappropriate (hover over the commenter's name and you'll see the flag option appear on right side of that line). And remember, respect goes both ways: Tolerance of others' opinions is important in a free discourse. If you're easily offended by strong opinions, you might skip reading comments entirely.

blog comments powered by Disqus