Special prosecutor will not use grand jury in Trayvon Martin investigation
April 9th, 2012
11:46 AM ET

Special prosecutor will not use grand jury in Trayvon Martin investigation

[Updated at 12:11 p.m. ET] State Attorney Angela Corey, appointed as a special prosecutor in the February shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, has decided against sending the case to a grand jury, her office said Monday.

"The decision should not be considered a factor in the final determination of the case," Corey's office said in a statement.

The grand jury, set to convene on Tuesday, was previously scheduled by the former prosecutor.

Corey previously said she has not used grand jury's in cases like this and added that from the time she was appointed she said she may not need a grand jury.

The decision about whether or not to charge George Zimmerman in the case now rests with prosecutors.

"At this time, the investigation continues and there will be no further comment from this office," in the statement.

The decision means that the timetable for any possible charges remains up in the air.

"We had hoped she had enough evidence without the need to convene a grand jury,” Ben Crump, the attorney for the Martin family said about Corey. “The family is trying to have patience and faith through all of this."

Crump said they are hoping for charges and an arrest as soon as possible.

"We know we want that day to come,” Crump said. “We want a very public trial so the evidence can come out and show people that the justice system works for everybody."

Crump added that he believed the evidence that has come out has “made it clear” that charges should be filed, without the need of a grand jury.

George Zimmerman's new attorney, Hal Uhrig, told CNN that he was "not surprised" by the announcement.

Uhrig said he doesn't know what her ultimate decision will be but that the move to go without a grand jury is a "courageous move on her part."

Martin ventured out from his father's fiancee's home in Sanford to get a snack at a nearby convenience store. As he walked home with a bag of Skittles and an Arizona iced tea, he was shot and killed by Zimmerman.

Sanford police questioned Zimmerman and released him without charges.

From there, the case has evolved into opposing allegations from Zimmerman's supporters, Martin's family and authorities.

Zimmerman says he killed Martin in self-defense after the teen punched him and slammed his head on the sidewalk, according to an Orlando Sentinel report that was later confirmed by Sanford police.

The case  has triggered a nationwide debate about Florida's "stand your ground" law - which allows people to use deadly force anywhere they feel a reasonable threat of death or serious injury - and race in America.

Post by:
Filed under: Florida • Trayvon Martin
soundoff (633 Responses)
  1. jimmy crow

    its official Whites can now shoot Blacks at will: Captati keep your hood on but adjust it so you can see that its not Jessie and al - but bull conner and george wallace...

    April 9, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • clemalum07

      Zimmerman is white?

      April 9, 2012 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      he isn't white and blacks shoot a lot more black than whites do

      April 9, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • brian

      Zimmerman is Mexican

      April 9, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • justanotherchildofgod

      No. Please read the article. This does not mean they are letting Zimmerman go. It means they are not letting a group of untrained people who might or might not have racial issues, determine if it should or shouldn't go to trial. The case is not "over". The prosecutor is saying that the decision of whether or not charge Zimmerman will be made by professionals based on evidence, not by a group of people who may have alternative reasons for making such decisions.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • sarahalbion

      Why do you say that?, the shooter was of diverse ethnicity and was registered as Hispanic. He was not white

      April 9, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • URRaceBaiting...

      Whites helped elect a black president...Try being white and walking through a predominantly black neighborhood...black on black crime and a lack of education are much bigger issues than this tradgic incident...wait for the fracts before you spew more ignorance...

      April 9, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • sarahalbion

      If Zimmerman is white then President Obama is white

      April 9, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      If someone is where he don't belong, has a hoody, lurking and looking around like his head is on a gyro, comes at me... I will shoot not to miss!!!

      April 9, 2012 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Greg H

      I guess a gang of blacks can beat, rob and strip a man of his clothes and leave him there on the street, oh and video tape and post and not get arrested either.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ready4theshow

      Yep, this means the Martin family's attempt to portray their gold-toothed hoodlum son as an innocent babe didn't work. You have a man who was bloodied and beaten, two eyewitnesses saying Trayvon was beating him, a timeline that shows Trayvon chose NOT to go back to his home but came back to confront Zimmerman, and I bet powder burns on Trayvon's chest, indicating the shot was made from a close distance.

      Oh, and the fact that Zimmerman passed a voice stress analysis and answered all SPD's questions without lawyering up...He defended himself against a violent thug. If there are riots, blood will be on the hands of NBC, CNN, MSNBC, ABC, and all the lefty bloggers who whipped people into a frenzy over the death of a violent criminal.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • americanflag

      Zimmerman is not white you jackhole.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • John Cho

      So, Jimmy Crow, you were there and saw the whole thing?.....Didn't think so. You can't assume you know the full story. Also, the prosecutors have to follow the law (its thier job). If they don't have the evidence to convict this guy, then they don't have it. Sad day to see a young man of any race die, but don't give in and be a racist yourself.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • dee

      people want to say, he's not racist, because he's hispanic. Any person of color knows that even these 2 communities do not agree, and really don't like each other much, so just because he is hispanic, doesn't stop him from being racist.

      April 9, 2012 at 2:47 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Hal Atosis

    Maybe they were given the evidence, including something more current that this 5 year old one of "hoodie"

    April 9, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jasie

      Why do they keep trying to mislead the public by publishing the pics of Trayvon as a 12 yr old.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
  3. MotoJB

    I agree...talk about biased journalism; "As he walked home with a bag of Skittles and an Arizona iced tea, he was shot and killed by Zimmerman." Are you kidding me?

    April 9, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • JJ Jones

      Right. CNN is no longer allowed to report the truth.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • bjeff68

      "Bag of skilttles and an iced tea" has been in EVERY story CNN has ever reported on this as if that is somehow a critical element of the case. What a joke!

      April 9, 2012 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • yuri pelham

      No, that's what happened. Lynchings are now out of fashion. The police are more of a threat to the community than Zimmerman

      April 9, 2012 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Robb

      I agree about the skittles/tea sentence, this is actually the first time Ive ever posted on CNN despite being a longtime viewer of the comments. This is extremely poorly written and inflammitory. Im also calling foul on this gem:

      "The case has triggered a nationwide debate about Florida's "stand your ground" law – which allows people to use deadly force anywhere they feel a reasonable threat of death or serious injury – and RACE in America"

      Is this a fact based article or an opinion piece? What a joke.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
  4. SixDegrees

    Sounds like there isn't enough evidence to persuade a grand jury, but it's politically important to bring charges anyway.

    April 9, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kevin

      No charges should be brought only because it is the political thing to do. That is ridiculous. If charges should be brought, they should be brough on their own merit. Not because it will passify a group of people.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • six degrees is a disgrace to the american flag

      Are you kiding me?? Its politically correct to charge some one with witch they have no evidence commited a crime based on the laws of FL??? So just curious in the 1700s it was politically correct to have slaves would you own one to be politically correct?

      April 9, 2012 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • tagnone

      THERE BETTER BE CHARGES AND THEY KNOW IT

      April 10, 2012 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
  5. American Stereotyping expert Pete

    I guess they had to change the hispanic picture of Zimmerman to the "more white looking" picture. The mexican
    gang banger protecting "his" turf image don't bode well for his defense.

    April 9, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Justic

    JamesJ, the 911 operator did not say "we don't recommend you to follow him." He said "we do not need you to do that", after being asked if he was following Trayvon.

    April 9, 2012 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • ITRIEDEL

      omg an 911 dispatcher is not POLICE OFFICER people... THEY ARE EMPLOYEES with as much jurisdiction as walmart door greeters who ask for your receipt....

      ZILCH!

      April 9, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rick

      But the intonation he used combined with the words clearly stated that Zimmerman should stand down and let the police deal with it.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
  7. HYPOCRISY

    5/27 – a white teenager in Kansas City was followed home by two black teens who attacked him on his front porch, set him afire with gasoline and ran away.

    If you're not going to make a spectacle of this incident, then why is this one, a Hispanic vs. a back, any different? Oh wait, that's right, CNN has invented a new race called "white Hispanic."

    April 9, 2012 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • yuri pelham

      Boycott the racist state of Florida

      April 9, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • ?

      Blacks killing whites isn't news.....white's don't play the race card.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sup

      @HYPOCRISY I remember hearing abou that story, I highly doubt two black kids set a white kid on fire in broad daylight and have not been caught yet, the only despciption given was that they were 16...the kids was smoking meth or doing whatever is poor white kids do to get high and set himself on fire and when ever white people do something like kill their kids or wives blame it on the black guy!

      April 9, 2012 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • dzaffina

      you mean the 13 yo white kid that got burned playing with gasoline and a lighter, and blamed it on two black kids that don't exist?

      April 9, 2012 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • BMcGee

      If you have read other articles about this, you would have read that "hispanic" is an ethnicity, NOT a race. There are hispanics of all colors. You CAN be white and hispanic, or black and hispanic. Maybe you should read up on it instead of spouting off.

      April 9, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • tagnone

      HISPANICS AND BLACKS DON'T MIX

      April 10, 2012 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  8. WOW

    There is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to support Zimmermans case of self defense. The FACT is that he was chasing him. The FACT is that the girl heard Martin ask why he was being followed. There no evidence that Martin attacked Zimemrman first!!!! If Zimmerman got beat up its most likely he confronted Martin 1st. There is NO evidence except Zimmermans word that he was attacked. The odds are Zimmerman confronted Martin and got his but kicked so he shot him. The POLICE should have never let him go!! They took his word that he was attacked 1st to be the truth. SAD. That child is dead now because he was profiled and chased.

    April 9, 2012 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Will

      The scratches on the back of his head you lDIOT?

      Humans (not jungle animal, half-human throwbacks) are expected to CALL THE POLICE, or ASK FOR HELP if they think they're being stalked (which he wasn't - Zimmerman had every right, as a neighborhood watch officer, to see why a stranger snuck into his gated community), NOT PHYSICALLY ASSAULT the person.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • clemalum07

      lol @ him being a Child. CNN really has you brainwashed.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • colliersf

      Fact..He was walking back to his car after 911 operator told him to.Then little thug came and starting beating him up.. Fact the media has to screw with the audio and get caught to make Zimmerman look like he was wrong. I hope he walks free as a jay bird because he defended himself.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • bjeff68

      There is also absolutely NOTHING to support your version of events either, but why let that get in the way of a liberal on a mindless rant.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • ted

      Even neglecting the fact that what you posted is largely contrary to eyewitness accounts, your argument seems to be that there is not enough evidence to prove Zimmerman is innocent. I think Casey, OJ and Baretta would agree that it is innocent until proven guilty. Doesn't seem from evidence so far that there is enough EVIDENCE to convict Zimmerman of anything, even excessive use of force. Zimmerman is the only one who knows whether or not he felt his life was in danger.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • Facts

      Change the wording: Young man in hoodie skulking late at night down back yards of gated community. Followed by neighbor hood watch personnel. Disappears from sight of Mr.Zimmerman. Confronts him, attacks him for following him. Is shot in self defense by Mr.Zimmerman after repeated cries for help go unanswered. Why is it ok for Martin to walk someplace but not Zimmerman?

      April 9, 2012 at 12:55 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Anonymous

    If George Zimmerman walks away scotts free on killing this kid, there will be riots in FL that will make the LA Rodney King riots look like a flag football game.

    April 9, 2012 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      bring it, we have a lot of weapons

      April 9, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • ?

      .....yawn........

      April 9, 2012 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • grillkicker

      there will be no riots...at least not in my neighborhood...too many concealed carries here...

      April 9, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Me

      Move along folks...nothing new to this...blacks love a good riot.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Anonymous

      So you are bascially saying that those who are racist think this is about race???

      April 9, 2012 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ready4theshow

      If the blacks in Florida are dumb enough to riot, they will die. Florida isn't LA. This state is more heavily armed than most countries. You think the people of Sanford are going to watch their town burn? Better yet, you think the blacks will do well trying to burn down Little Havana in Miami? The Cubans aren't going to play that game.

      I've gone to several gun shows here in Florida lately, and they've been busy. They've been busy since Obama took office, but the one I went to 2 weeks ago was packed. I saw people buying plenty of guns, but the amount of ammo they were buying surprised even ME. The dealers who had cases of 7.62×39 and .223(5.56×45) were selling them as fast as they could. Same for all pistol ammo calibers. 12 gauge defensive shotguns and all military spec rifles were big sellers, as well as all handguns. And there was not a black face in the entire place.

      Don't do it, black folk. Bad idea.

      April 9, 2012 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Colin

    Chrystal, I agree with you. How can get be self defense when he followed trayvon, got out of his car, and started the altercation. That's absurd. But I do believe that race is playing a role in this case because if trayvon had shot zimmerman, he would've never been released. As much as we try to look past it, racism is still very much an issue in our society. It is sad.

    April 9, 2012 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Florida sux

    They only held the shooter for 7 hours before releasing him? were any drug tests or psychological tests done in that span or did they just hang out at the Police station. I just saw the vid of him walking in the door of the station and I swear I see the cop behind him smiling....

    April 9, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • BMcGee

      Everyone looked very relaxed, didn't they? A mere half hour after the shooting. Not "barely conscious" like his brother says, one moment away from diapers for life.

      April 9, 2012 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • tagnone

      THE POLICE SET UP THE INJURIES WE KNOW THAT

      April 10, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  12. VivJ

    Seems to me Trayvon's civil rights were violated. He wasn't committing a crime, just walking home. Which he has a right to do. Zimmerman had to have gotten out of his car and approach Trayvon. Where is Trayvon's right to stand his ground? If zimmerman had have done what the 911 operator instructed, we wouldn't be here today and the boy would be alive. Let's face it, he was judged by his "hoodie" yes it was raining, and probably also because of his skin color. Face it you people who want to support a murderer, he had no business bothering the boy. If zimmerman had waited for the police, we probably would not be having this discussion

    April 9, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  13. ray

    fbi needs to take up this case 4real!!!

    April 9, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  14. GM

    Zimmerman was wrong on all points once he was told to NOT FOLLOW Trayvon PERIOD. At that point he became; aggressor, judge, jury and EXOCUTIONER of Trayvon.

    April 9, 2012 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kevin

      No.,.he wasn't told not to follow him.... period

      April 9, 2012 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Bjamil

    FromBelow...None of this would have happen if Z had not followed/stalked Martin. And by the way, the pic being displayed is as old as Martin looks. A pic taken 9 days prior to his murder sittin on a horse at his Moms B'day party shows him looking a whole lot younger. These are current pics.

    April 9, 2012 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18