George Zimmerman has been charged with second-degree murder for the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.
“It is the search for justice for Trayvon that has brought us to this moment,” state attorney Corey said.
Corey also had a message for those who have been rushing to judgment on the case.
“You cannot know what it’s like to launch this type of investigation and come to this conclusion,” State Attorney Angela Corey said during the press conference. ”We don’t prosecute by public pressure or petition. We prosecute cases on the relevant facts of each case and on the laws of the state of Florida.”
Corey said both of Martin’s parents, Sybryna Fulton and Tracy Martin, have been notified of the charges and arrest of Zimmerman. Corey said Zimmerman was in custody in Florida and that the charge carries no bond initially.
Corey said the decision to charge Zimmerman was made last week. She said Seminole County officials have worked with her office to set up the courts for coming hearings.
Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi released a statement saying she had full confidence in the charges.
“When I worked with Governor Scott to appoint State Attorney Angela Corey to the case involving Trayvon Martin, I did so with the full confidence that a swift and thorough investigation would be conducted,” Bondi said in her statement. “Today, State Attorney Corey’s decision to press charges against George Zimmerman for the shooting of Trayvon demonstrates Corey’s commitment to bringing justice to Trayvon’s family and allowing due process for Zimmerman.”
Reverend Al Sharpton spoke first for the family after the charges were announced.
“There is no victory here; this is about pursuing justice,” Rev. Sharpton said.
“We simply wanted an arrest,” Trayvon’s mother Sabryna said. “And we got it. Thank you lord. Thank you Jesus.”
Fulton also thanked everyone involved with everything leading up to the charges issued Wednesday.
“From my heart to your heart because a heart has no color,” Fulton said. “It’s not black, it’s not white, it’s red; and I want to say from my heart to your heart, thank you.”
The outcry for justice for Martin and an arrest of Zimmerman started shortly after some of the details about the shooting began to surface. Multiple rallies were held around the state in the next few weeks drawing tens of thousands of protesters.
Students in Miami-Dade County and across South Florida walked out of their schools on March 23rd to protest the lack of an arrest in the shooting death of Martin. A total of 15 high schools in Miami-Dade County walked out on that day. The student protests all remained peaceful.
The case became such a controversy across the country that President Barack Obama would eventually weigh in on the shooting.
“If I had a son, he’d look like Trayvon,” President Obama said. “And I think every parent in America should be able to understand why it is absolutely imperative that we investigate every aspect of this.”
“I think all of us have to do some soul searching to figure out how something like this happened,” Obama continued.
Last weekend, Zimmerman launched a website,www.therealgeorgezimmerman.com, to solicit donations to help pay for his living expenses and his attorneys.
“On Sunday February 26th, I was involved in a life altering event which led me to become the subject of intense media coverage. As a result of the incident and subsequent media coverage, I have been forced to leave my home, my school, my employer, my family and ultimately, my entire life.”
Under a section titled “My race,” the website has a Thomas Paine quote: “The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion.”