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.

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Filed under: Florida • Trayvon Martin
soundoff (633 Responses)
  1. Chris

    As in correctly do you mean convict the man even if the evidence supports Zimmerman? We do not know everything that the police have only what the media is feeding us.

    April 9, 2012 at 1:11 pm | Report abuse |
  2. bob's ur uncle

    It looks like neither person did anything wrong. Its tragic that one had to die. But it doesn't mean anyone did anything wrong.

    April 9, 2012 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • tom

      Someone did something wrong here. Someone was in the wrong place at the wrong time.

      April 9, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  3. HunterPSU

    Let me take a wild guess....The prosecutor brings charges but the case settles later out of court for some minor non-jailable sentence. what prosecutor that wants a career going forward will risk not bringing charges. The mobs with Jesse and Al will make sure a prosecutor that does not listen to them will never have a career.

    April 9, 2012 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
  4. JP

    All you people keep talking about Trayvons recent pictures. What does that have to do with anything? In that case lets see the More recent pictures of Zimmermans injuries.

    April 9, 2012 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Eva

    Hey HONESTLY, great way to get your STATEMENT out while being anonymous. Cowards post things without saying who they are. PLUS, Zimmerman is HISPANIC not WHITE, so why make your ignorant statement???

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

      Hispanics are white and black and everything else. It is an ethnicity, not a race. Look it up.

      April 9, 2012 at 2:50 pm | Report abuse |
  6. GM

    The bigger picture here is a race war is what is desired because under MARTIAL LAW each state becomes in control of it's self and DOES NOT have to follow FEDERAL (OBAMA) until MARTIAL LAW IS LIFTED...Think people...It is why race baiters are trying to spark a race war so states that don't wish to continue following federal mandate don't have to...

    April 9, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Fred III

    Race??? I don't know maybe?? What I know for sure is that this is no neighborhood watchman but, rather a vigilante with an agenda that caused a 17 year old kid his life. I agree with iwannatalk2. We teach our kids to look out for people who behave like Zimmerman did. Zimmerman scares the living crap out of this kid to the point where he's telling his girlfriend about it on the phone and, she tells him to run?? Zimmerman continues the pursuit anyway? Then claims self defense?? If it were my kid I'd want this guy dead and, I'd want to be the one who did it!! Hopefully my Christian faith would prevent that reaction but, make no mistake we need to pray for these prosecutors that they have the courage and conviction to get this right no matter what because a strong message needs to be sent that viglante behavior won't be tolerated!!!!! I understand race sensitivity in the African American community. I am white and, I cannot possibly understand what it's like to be profiled based on skin color so I understand the need for African Americans to challenge racism at every turn until it no longer exists. This being said there's more to this case than just race. Zimmerman may have started that day as a law abiding citizen but, he finished it as a paranoid vigilante who caused the death of a teenage boy. We all are confronted with situations that require we behave in an ehtical law abiding manner. Lots of people wake up every day as law abiding citizens. Then they drive drive drunk and kill people or, assault someone over an arguement etc. Point being when Zimmerman grabbed his gun and stalked and killed a teenage boy he went way beyond what a law abiding society accepts and I pray for Trayvon and, his family's sake they get the justice they deserve. I also pray as Americans that we all give our justice system a fair chance to work. The irony here is if we do anything outside of our justice system we are absolutely no better than the Zimmermans of this World.

    April 9, 2012 at 1:25 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Jehosophat

    Dead Man Walking in this case and not OJ's and Anthony because there was no "race" issue at all. (to say that race isn't a large factor in Zimm's case is just being delusional). OJ (IMHO) is a larger than life celeb (in which "wow" factors are part of the celeb norm) , half of the black community thinks he's guilty and he's in jail as it is, Anthony due to the "kind" of outrage: there was no race, there was no recorded 911 call that displays the murder, there was only conjecture with no proof. Zimmerman has a whole nation of blacks wanting his head. The other two didn't. So you think that if Zimmerman is out and about walking around some downtown city center and a group of black people notices him they are either going to: a) ignore him, b) point and whisper, c) have a civilized discussion of his wrong doing, d) attack him as a mob and beat him to death in a crazed rage. Be absolutely realistic/ real world in your choice. THAT's why he's a dead man walking.

    April 9, 2012 at 1:25 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Doug l.

    Here are facts as we know them. The 160 pound Zimmerman was able to get out of his car and run down Trayvon and when he caught him the 250 pound Zimmerman was able to wrestle Trayvon to the ground and shot him.

    April 9, 2012 at 1:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dean

      Those are not the facts. I just watched a CNN report from a woman who was on the phone with 911 while watching the two struggle. She saw Treyvon on top. So did the young boy walking his dog. Also, Zimmerman made almost 50 calls to police over a period of time and none of those ended like this one did. The only factor that differed was Treyvon.

      But we need to know the facts and not what gets trickled out to us in the news. This should go to a grand jury.

      April 9, 2012 at 2:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ol' Yeller

      @Dean- Are you just making this up as you go along? The kid walking the dog did not see Trayvon on top of Zimmerman. You can say that, but it doesn't make it true. I'm sure you are ready willing and able to spread whatever falsehoods you choose to support Zimmerman (just like his family and Attorneys), but it doesn't make it true.

      April 9, 2012 at 2:23 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Chris

    Where did you get your facts Doug?

    April 9, 2012 at 1:29 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Chris

    So you are saying that black people are violent thugs that will beat anyone who they think is guilty Jehosophat? What a horrible sterio type you have of the black communtiy.

    April 9, 2012 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jehosophat

      not being philosophical – just realistic. This case isn't typical. This case has national attention and has it's fingers deep into a racial wound that the black community has been suffering from since the days your ancestors abducted black skinned people from their home countries and forced to live and die as slaves, Christopher.

      Mob mentality is prevalent and has many example in today's society, ie: The LA riots, the Vancouver NHL riots (and they mostly white people!), the G20 riots, Gaddafi's publicized death. Happens all the time. We are all human and the mob mentality rears it's ugly head time and time again. With all the marching and anger by the black community it's hard to not imagine the same thing here. So, again, answer my question honestly and realistically without resorting to call someone on bigotry.

      My neighborhood has many black families and I socialize with all of them often. They say the same things. So get your head out of the sand and look at the world around you.

      oh, and you spelled stereotype wrong. No i and it is one word. Spelling and grammar show intelligence, my friend.

      April 9, 2012 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
  12. tom

    Much nicer picture of Zimmerman. He looks like a gentleman. Still the same baby picture of martin though he looks about 12

    April 9, 2012 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |
  13. D Peterson Carpintero

    OK this case will have its day in court. Let's now focus on the problem... Our Killing Culture!
    Do you all realize that 9 out of 10 African-Americans that are murdered; are murdered by African-Americans? There seems to be a disapropriate number of people who do not value life and do not care about the consequences for taking the life of another.
    Could the belief in a forgiving God have something to do with this?
    Americans should be shocked and work towards teaching Murder is not the answer.
    We should focus on all the murders not just those involved an Hispanic & an African-American.

    April 9, 2012 at 1:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dean

      You cannot call this a murder. If this went to the grand jury and then he were convicted of murder then and only then can you call it that.

      He shot a young man, he claims that he was attacked, the police took him in and questioned him for hours then released him, he made numerious call to police over a period of time and none ended like this one did. Just Saying.

      April 9, 2012 at 2:10 pm | Report abuse |
  14. aimeenss

    You can't have it both ways. In one paragraph you say that Martin stepped out to get some refreshments and returned with a bag of Skittles and and Arizona iced tea when Zimmerman shot and killed him, from which most would infer that he was strolling back to his father's fiance's house and that Zimmerman shot him in cold blood. Three paragraphs down you say that Sanford police confirmed that Zimmerman had been punched and his head had been beaten on the concrete. WHICH WAS IT? I would suggest it was the narrative confirmed by Sanford Police, wouldn't you?

    April 9, 2012 at 1:49 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Chris

    Really Jehosophat?? I will make sure to use spell check this time as not to offend you. You seem to love to make assumptions without the facts. Like my name for example, its Christine thank you very much. Lets not talk about my ancestors who were not even in this country yet when slavery started. Also get your history straight, black man sold slaves to the United States. It was many white people who fought and died to free them during the civil war. This case is not about race, especially black and white. Zimmerman is NOT White. Everyone is jumping the gun before all the facts of the case are out. Why does everything have to turn into a race war?

    April 9, 2012 at 2:07 pm | Report abuse |
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