March 28th, 2012
05:47 PM ET

A collection of public documents in Trayvon Martin shooting

[Updated April 12] Police and other officials in Sanford, Florida, have released a number of documents relating to the investigation of the February 26 shooting death of teenager Trayvon Martin and the arrest of George Zimmerman on a charge of second-degree murder. In this post, we’ve collected some of the documents that show what police initially found at the scene, what authorities have told the public about the case, and other official documents.

Martin, a black 17-year-old, was unarmed when he was shot to death by Zimmerman, a Hispanic neighborhood watch volunteer, as Martin was walking back to the house of his father's fiancee in Sanford.

Zimmerman had called police to report a suspicious person and said he was following Martin, despite being told by a dispatcher he didn't need to do so. He says he killed Martin in self-defense after the teen attacked him in the gated community. Zimmerman was questioned but not charged, police said, because they lacked evidence to contradict his account.

The case has sparked a national debate about, among other things, race and self-defense laws. Between Zimmerman’s account to police, tapes of 911 calls and accounts from witnesses and others, much is in dispute. (See CNN’s breakdown of what witnesses say happened.)

The initial police reports

Sanford police have released initial reports from the officers who first responded to the shooting scene on February 26. The reports detail what the officers saw when they arrived, officers’ attempts to resuscitate Martin, and a very brief account from Zimmerman. They do not include statements from other witnesses or any investigative information beyond the officers’ initial observations.

The initial police reports describe the case as "homicide/negligent" and "manslaughter/unnecessary killing to prevent unlawful act." City officials have said that all reports need descriptions to help track types of incidents.

“This code does not indicate a formal charge that will be lodged against an alleged offender,” the city said in a news release on Tuesday. “It is used for internal processing and to type cases.”

Citing multiple sources, ABC News reported Wednesday that the lead investigator in the case recommended that Zimmerman be charged with manslaughter after the shooting, but the state attorney's office determined that there was not enough evidence to lead to a conviction.

February 27 letter to neighborhood

In this letter to residents of the neighborhood where Martin was shot, the Sanford Police Department informs the residents of the fatal shooting and gives a brief description of the incident. The letter is dated February 27, the day after the shooting.

It also tells residents that an investigation was being conducted and that the department would hold a community meeting.

Answers from police chief

On March 21, with national public interest in the case rising, the Sanford city manager released a letter in which the city police chief answered what he said were frequently asked questions about the shooting.

The letter addresses issues such as why Zimmerman was not arrested and why he was armed. It also answers why the city Police Department hasn't released 911 tapes, though readers should be aware the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office had done so.

Those tapes now can be heard on the city’s website.

City: Newspaper's report on Zimmerman’s account consistent with inquiry

More than a month after the shooting, the Orlando Sentinel, citing “authorities” as its source of information, reported that Zimmerman told police that he had lost sight of Martin after trying to follow him and that he was returning to his vehicle when Martin confronted him.

The Sentinel also reported that Zimmerman claimed to police that Martin attacked him before he shot Martin.

On Monday, the city of Sanford released a statement in which it condemned what it called "unauthorized leaks," but confirmed that the newspaper account "is consistent with the information provided to the State Attorney's office by the Police Department."

Affidavit: Zimmerman 'profiled' Martin

In an affidavit of probable cause, a Florida investigator says that the neighborhood watch volunteer "profiled" the victim, Martin, and disregarded a police dispatcher's request that he await the arrival of police.

Zimmermann arrested and booked

On April 11, Zimmerman turned himself in to authorities in Florida. He was was transported that evening to the Seminole County Criminal Justice Center, charged with second-degree murder and booked into county jail. On April 12, 47 days after Martin was shot and killed, Zimmerman made his first court appearance. His arraignment was set for May 29.

In the meantime, Zimmerman will stay in jail, segregated from the other inmates. He has access to the commissary, where he purchased $79.84 worth of items.

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Filed under: Florida • Trayvon Martin
soundoff (863 Responses)
  1. Mother73

    For all of those that doubt Zimmerman was injured, or there was evidence of Zimmerman being on the ground, why would reports indicate Zimmerman was injured and dirty? The only explanation is that you believe the very first cop on the scene, then every other person in contact with this case conspired to cover up a murder.

    March 30, 2012 at 2:00 am | Report abuse |
  2. Nar

    The video CNN shoes of Zimmerman is cut. The full video has a scene where you can see the back of his head and you can see a cut on it. You can find it on the web. ABC ran the full video.

    March 30, 2012 at 2:20 am | Report abuse |
  3. Nar

    By the way, Martin wasn't a "little kid." He was 6' 3".

    March 30, 2012 at 2:29 am | Report abuse |
    • Dion Green

      and neither was zimmmerman,
      he was 5'9" over 200 lbs. he wasnt so overmatched.

      March 30, 2012 at 7:37 am | Report abuse |
  4. jsmoulder

    The thing that I am not seeing in this case is all of Travons friends and teachers coming out and saying what a good student and friend he was. Only his mother and her attorney are the ones speaking. I am sure all of the bias media have tried to find the others that would stand up and say what a good kid he was. Where are they?
    Justice is blind, it contains no emotions, no bias, and should not contain race cards.

    March 30, 2012 at 8:12 am | Report abuse |
    • pgcreativeadvertising

      I live in Miami, where Trayvon is from. They have come out in support of him on local news.

      March 30, 2012 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bill

      IIf I was a 17 year old black teen being chased by a guy who looks like a skinhead....? If I could not get away I might turn and fight ..that is called SELF DEFENCE, to bad the guy doing the chasing was armed. Zimmermnan is NOT a cop, he had no right at all to stop this kid, or reason too....yet her claims self defence? He was armed, I bet if he had not been armed he would have stayed in his car n waited for the REAL COPS, instead he decided to play vigilante and killed an Innocent teen.

      March 30, 2012 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • stella ndukwe

      you are missing the point here. This case is not about whether Trayvon was a good kid or not, this is about zimmerman arming himself with a concealed weapon, following a 17 yr old kid minding his own business; against the orders of a 911 dispatcher, confronting the kid and picking a fight with him. When Trayvon decides to defend himself against this creep, he (zimmerman) pulls out a gun and shoots Trayvon in cold blood. TRAYVON DID NOT DESERVE THAT ! HE DID NOTHING WRONG.

      March 30, 2012 at 4:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • JoJo

      Bla bla bla ........ he should have waited for the real cops...... but he didn't, that's not a crime. He approached the guy to find out why he was there. Then was attacked by an angry black male, with an Att..itude. Zimmerman had to shoot him in self defense. Because martin couldn't answer a few simple questions without copping an att...itude. He picked the wrong guy. Oops! And got shot. Too bad.

      April 1, 2012 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • monab

      Maybe some people have the decency to not speak ill of the innocent dead; maybe some people have the decency to offer an umbrella to someone they see walking in the rain in their gated community.
      This goes beyond race: Trayvon saved his father's life in a fire, now maybe he can save yours if you listen & learn. George was taught by his father, the retired judge, that Zimmermans are above the law. An innocent beautiful young life was taken away from us. We all are in danger from Zimmerman who most likely never learned right from wrong just that daddy would let him get away with violence against others->see George's violent criminal record that Sr. couldn't even whitewash.

      April 2, 2012 at 2:55 am | Report abuse |
    • Kris

      There have been teachers and a coach that said he was a good kid. A friend has said the same. But aside from the fact that he was suspended from school, no one, not teachers, principal, neighbors or anyone has come out to say negative things about him either.

      April 2, 2012 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • nani

      seriously?? so if he were a trouble maker and not a great student he deserves to be killed? I dont understand this way of thinking? Zimm was told to let the police handle it. he shot an unarmed boy... and you are concerned with the fact he was not a great student.... REALLY?

      April 3, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • David B

      Do you need that to help make a judgement?

      April 12, 2012 at 7:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Marion

      jsmoulder wrote:

      "The thing that I am not seeing in this case is all of Travons friends and teachers coming out and saying what a good student and friend he was. Only his mother and her attorney are the ones speaking. I am sure all of the bias media have tried to find the others that would stand up and say what a good kid he was. Where are they?
      Justice is blind, it contains no emotions, no bias, and should not contain race cards."

      I guess you missed it: Trayvon's H.S. football coach came out and said Trayvon "didn't have a mean bone in his body".
      also, another friend of Trayvon's spoke up for him.

      April 12, 2012 at 7:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mr.Right1552

      It doesn't take away from the fact that he wasn't doing anything other than minding his own business. There are a lot of jerks out in the world, but you don't have the right to shoot them.

      April 12, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
  5. RIP2HIM

    Since when did a dead teenager have to prove a case about why he may have attacked someone. In all these years i have witnessed people being arrested, i thought the person who pulled the trigger always has to prove their innocense. In this case its the opposite. I wonder who did Zimmerman call in the police station that made the decision to let him go from a homicide investigation on a Sunday night?

    March 30, 2012 at 8:35 am | Report abuse |
    • pgcreativeadvertising

      HIs dad is a former judge, and either had connections, or knew exactly what to say to get the DA and/or police to apply the Stand Your Ground law.

      March 30, 2012 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chad

      The burden of proof is never on the defense. The prosecution has to prove without a reasonable doubt he did it. That is how are justice system works.

      March 30, 2012 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tina Cart

      We know it was his daddy that they spoke with! Then they went about the cover up. For all you idiots that think it doesn't happen how many of you have worked with or in law enforcement? In the "olden" days when the scripts didn't match they used white out to change the statements. Now it's so much easier with a computer and a few keystrokes. And he DIDN'T hurt himself later IF he had injuries? Been there, saw that with someone in 1986 and know that people do it to prove their case! I don't care if this boy DID turn out of fear to protect himself against the REAL thug GZ... He was starting to stand his ground. I'm heartsick. Nothing will bring him back! And, when you are dead there IS NO JUSTICE! How???

      March 30, 2012 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • stella ndukwe


      March 30, 2012 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • WDLKD

      No, in all cases, you are INNOCENT until proven guilty. zimmermans story was corroborated by witnesses and forensic data the public doesn't have. now, i'm NOT saying zimmerman is innocent, nor am i saying He's guilty. Why? Because the public media and social networking doesn't have the all the evidence, NOT THE RIGHT to judge a man. for Gods sake people, wait for the Grand jury and the state prosecutor to decide if he should be tried or not.

      March 30, 2012 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
  6. uno

    What if Mr. Zimmerman had possessed a different mindset? He was in his truck, it was raining, what if he had simply offered Mr. Martin a ride? - I once stopped on a highway to help a couple stranded black guys having problems with their car. Yes, I was a little nervous, but I needn't have been. They were very friendly and thanked me for stopping to help. The drivers wife was in the car along with her baby and mother. They only needed a ride for gas. Get off Rodney King–his eternal question still resounds "Can't we all just get along?"

    March 30, 2012 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • Scottish Mama

      I once too saw some black men having trouble standing around a car with the hood up. I went to do my business and came by again 5 minutes later. I passed up their car pulled a u turn and put my car facing theirs. They were quite shocked and I may have scared them a little(now that I think of it)(crazy whte women)lol I asked if they needed Help, it was a sultry, humid, and stiffling day, one man jumped on it, the other two seemed leary of me.(I think it works both ways, whites scare others) He asked if I had cables and I said yes. Gave them the jump. He asked if I wanted money, I saw no, of course not. Have a good day and I was on my way and they on theirs. Life is good.

      March 30, 2012 at 1:06 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Mark Freedman

    The Zimmerman "Protect George" caravan is in full regalia: NRA/Local Police/DAs/ etc but the BIG Question for me is WHY is this wannabe loser George Zimmerman garnering so much support from the authorities. Answer: He is and has been a confidentiall informant for the cops in his pseudo role of "neighborhood watchdog!" Goerge Zimmerman I believe since his run in with cops and arrest for cop assault was "turned" and that he the true reason is is always dialing 911 and ratting out the "miscreants" and "these guys" who "always get away with it;" GZ is a RAT for the cops in Sanford and in that role has had eyes open and "KNOWS STUFF" about when and where and how and who in the local police force is DOING WHAT!!! That makes his "MOUTH" a threat to the cops themselves and even the DAs. DOes anyone doubt a massive cover-up is in play just like what happened in PENN STATE's Athletic Dept and Admin office? Give me a break if you can't see this forest for the trees!!!!!

    March 30, 2012 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • JUST SAY'N


      March 30, 2012 at 2:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • mona19595

      Mr. Freedman you are absolutey correct......the proof is why the Police Chief stepped aside.....I had a feeling GZ had some connection but couldn't figure it out until I read his father WAS a judge. And yes I truely believe he is a Police informant which is why he was self appointed to the Neighborhood Watch......You hit the nail on the head regarding massive coverup just like Penn State...........I bet Sandusky gets off......they let Joe Pa take the blame and shoved him under the bus......both situations are so PATHETIC it makes me SICK!!!!

      April 2, 2012 at 4:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Level2000

      I completely agree with Mark Freedman... Zimmerman's dad is a Judge/Magistrate. It's obvious that has a lot of weight in Zimmerman's favor. I smell cover up!

      April 3, 2012 at 2:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • kamanakapu

      Very interesting point! And, based on my experience, the probabilities are very high.

      April 4, 2012 at 11:44 pm | Report abuse |
  8. doug

    You know I have treated all races with courtesy and respect my entire life, but it never surprises me anymore that 2 so called Reverands, men of the cloth, men of GOD, deciples of the church can speew out such racists, hatefull things like the so called Reverends Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton have done over the years and continue doing. All these 2 do is fuel the flames of hatred and racism rather than work to be the voices of reason and calm. They are only visable and audible when there is a microphone or camera near by. I have NEVER heard anything from them when a injustice is done by a person of color to one that is not. These 2 in my humble opinion are not worthy to even tie the shoes of the late great MLK

    March 31, 2012 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
    • monab

      Open your ears...united we stand divided we fall.

      April 2, 2012 at 3:07 am | Report abuse |
  9. curt

    OK, So Al and the gang want a trial so that justice can be done. Now suppose that everything Zimmerman and the eyewitnesses said was true and all the evidence line up in favor of Zimmerman. The PROSECUTOR now has to try a case with no evidence to support a conviction and may not even believe he is guilty according to the law for self defense. This would be a very interesting trial with the prosecutor actually helping the defense and knowing the riots are coming if there is an acquittal.

    March 31, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • monab

      A computer program with just the "facts" entered would spit out "guilty of murder" & who knows what else. The Zimmermans need to be investigated for this & past crimes. We are all in danger if the law is not on our side. Thank you Martins for the courage to stand up for Justice for Trayvon=Justice for All.

      April 2, 2012 at 3:15 am | Report abuse |
    • kamanakapu

      What riot? That Rodney King vs. LAPD matter was video taped so that there was no doubt as to what went down. Than, when that all-white jury acquitted those cops despite the evidence, the riot began.

      This case is a different thing altogether. The racists, however, are hoping and praying that a riot dose break out so the racists can shoot there mouths off. But We, the non-white People, are not stupid.

      April 4, 2012 at 11:56 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Doyle Price

    I know what Zimmerman said that Trayvon jumped him and was punching and bouncing his head on the sidewalk,
    What do the Officers say when they got to the Gated Community about Zimmermans Injurys if they were any.
    I havn't heard if they back up what Zimmerman says. I did hear something about being treated. ?????????
    Lots of questions, lets find out the truth. You can't listen to Jackson or Sharpton, they will fo anywhere to
    run there mouth.

    April 1, 2012 at 5:58 pm | Report abuse |
  11. No matter

    Paco you will be dealt with.

    April 3, 2012 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
  12. DAN2012

    One thing that seems to be pointed out quite a bit is that there were no photos and evidence taken at this scene, is that simply because daddy being an ex-judge and him being an informant. This should not be about race at all but about there obviously being some kind of cover up someshere.

    April 3, 2012 at 2:55 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Agito121

    The Veteran officer said it all, Zimmerman isnt a trained police officer so to go after someone while armed with a deadly weapom on mere assumption alone was foolish what gives him the right to approuch a minor with a gun or even go after Martin and because of his actions a boy is dead even if he did not attack he has that much responsibility.

    April 4, 2012 at 7:30 pm | Report abuse |
  14. kamanakapu

    The thing that bothers me about George Zimmerman is that he refuses to be open and up-front with the public. What’s he hiding for? He’s use of proxie’s to tell his side of the story raises a red flag: Zim cannot speak for himself!!

    April 5, 2012 at 12:33 am | Report abuse |
  15. Erwin K. Koranyi MD

    If George Zimmerman indeed had blood on his face and clothing, how come that the police failed to take a sample to decide WHOSE blood it was. It may have squirted onto Zimmerman from the dying Tryvon Martin. A dub with a Kleenex would have been sufficient to do a DNA sample. If the police failed to do it, it has been a gross negligence. If there was no blood at al, then Zimmerman is a lier.

    April 5, 2012 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
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