George Zimmerman trial verdict: NOT GUILTY of Trayvon Martin murder by female jury
George Zimmerman has been found not guilty on all charges after a jury of six women delivered their verdict following 16 hours of deliberations on Saturday evening.
The neighborhood watch volunteer shot and killed unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin after an altercation last year and had been charged with second degree murder and manslaughter. However, on Saturday night the jury returned to court to give their not guilty verdict on both counts.
The case has been filled with racial tensions after it was claimed Zimmerman racially profiled Martin.
However, Zimmerman's defense team argued that he acted in self defense and that he responded with justified deadly force after he was made to fear for his own life after being attacked by Martin.
Seminole County Judge Debra Nelson had allowed the jury to consider coming to a verdict of manslaughter, which requires a lesser burden of proof and which also carries a prison sentence of up to 30 years.
However, the jury believed the burden of proof had not been established by the prosecution even for that charge.
The jury had been considering whether to convict Zimmerman of second degree murder, and to do so they would have had to believe beyond reasonable doubt that Zimmerman acted with ill will, spite or hatred.
Prosecutors attempted to show Zimmerman as a violent man, desperate to play a police officer, and someone who regularly racially profiled innocent youth.
In response the defense team attempted to show the prosecution had not made out their case, and that Martin himself was a drug user, who was repeatedly in trouble, liked to fight, and had even been suspended from school for skipping classes.
The jury retired to deliberate on Friday and spent 16 hours discussing what verdict they should agree upon, and on Saturday night they returned a verdict of not guilty to both second degree murder and manslaughter. That means Zimmerman is a free man and will be released immediately.
An explosion rocked the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan on Saturday night, injuring at least 29 people, authorities said, adding that they are investigating the blast as a criminal act not immediately linked to any terror organization.
Olympic runner Allyson Felix credits her faith for her success as an athlete.
- 3 Things The Labour Party Can Learn From The Church About Unity
- Struggling With Comparing Yourself To Others? Time To Do Something About It
- Why Does God Allow Depression?
- Could Orthodox Churches Recognise The Pope? It's No Longer Completely Unthinkable
- Bieber Sings Delirious? Six Other Musical Acts And The Worship Songs They Should Cover
- Finding Focus: Four Ideas For The Desperately Distracted
- In Good Times And Bad, Why Psalm 23 Will See Us Through
- Leonard Cohen: 10 Of His Best Songs About Faith, God and Spirituality
- The Christian Comeback Is Coming, Says Brian McLaren
- Pro-life activists oppose 'ridiculous' proposal from bioethicists to force doctors to kill babies
- Christian event disrupted by extremists who oppose non-Jewish activities in Israel
- Over 160 ISIS militants killed in coalition airstrike in Iraq; jihadists surround Mosul with oil tanks
- Boko Haram militants shoot Christians returning home from church in Nigeria, killing 8; 2 other attacks claim 10 lives
- Chinese businessman who converted to Christianity from Buddhism to build $1.2m Noah's Ark replica
- Why The Church Has Got To Start Caring About Persecuted Christians