After being acquitted of killing Trayvon Martin (17) in 2012, Geroge Zimmerman has decided to sue the Martin family for $100 million due to the “damages” caused be the case.
What We Know:
- Zimmerman has denied his responsibility in the killing of Trayvon Martin several times. He claims that as a neighborhood watch volunteer, he was only defending himself during the 2012 encounter with the unarmed 17-year-old.
- Martin’s death inspired many protests and a national debate on race relations during Zimmerman’s trial. Due to the injustice, it angered protesters even more that Zimmerman was acquitted of the charges and that the civil rights case was dropped.
- Larry Klayman, Zimmerman’s attorney advised that the lawsuit was filed on Wednesday in Polk County. “It was a complete travesty of justice which destroyed my client’s life. People are destroyed and smeared and they have to start fighting back.”
- The lawsuit states that one of the witnesses from the trial, Rachel Jeantel, was an “imposter and a fake witness”. According to Zimmerman, Jeantel claimed that she was Martin’s girlfriend Diamond Eugene, who was on the phone with Martin when the incident occurred. The audio of the call was used as evidence against Zimmerman.
- Due to the trial, Zimmerman claims that he had to drop out of school, received numerous death threats, and “suffered great mental anguish” that forced him to seek professional treatment from psychologists for his “anxiety, depression, insomnia, and weight gain”. He claims that he has also been diagnosed with depression, PTSD, and PTSS.
- In addition to the Martin family, Zimmerman is also suing civil rights attorney Ben Crump and HarperCollins Publishers for the publication of his book, Open Season: Legalized Genocide of Colored People. The lawsuit states that Crump’s book “misstated facts about Zimmerman and defamed him” by creating the “false implication that Plaintiff Zimmerman participated and participates in the genocide of colored people”.
Neither Ben Crump nor Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton, could be reached for a comment at this time.