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NABJ Exclusive: Trayvon Martin family, Legal Team Respond to Firing of Sanford, Florida Police Chief

Wednesday, June 20, 2012   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Aprill Turner
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Family to participate in NABJ newsmaker plenary Thursday, June 21




Photo By Velvet S. McNeil

NEW ORLEANS, LA (June 20, 2012) -- After attending the opening ceremony for the 37th Annual National Association of Black Journalists Convention and Career Fair, the family of Trayvon Martin and their legal team held an exclusive news conference to respond to the firing of Sanford, Florida Police Chief Bill Lee on Wednesday. Under Lee's direction, Sanford police decided not to arrest George Zimmerman, who fatally shot the 17-year-old Martin.

In addition, Martin's family and legal team will participate in NABJ's "Trayvon Martin: A Crime Story in the Digital Age," newsmaker plenary tomorrow morning at 9:30 am (central time). Attorney Benjamin Crump said:

"The family's response and statement is that the city manager of Sanford had an internal investigation into the matter concerning Bill Lee. He concluded that investigation and made his decision. The parents of Trayvon Martin respect the decision of the city manager. They remain vigilent in getting justice for their son and the tragedy that claimed his life.

Mr. Martin always thought that the killer of his son should have been arrested and he had to go, with Sabrina and a lot of people, to great lengths to have the killer of his son arrested. So, it is one of those things- he has always believed that (Zimmerman) should have been arrested when he killed his son.

We've always maintained, - especially as it relates to the recent develops of the jailhouse records - credibility is the issue here. It has always been only George Zimmerman's word and his version that Trayvon Martin attacked him. All of the objective evidence in this case: the 911 tapes, George Zimmerman's statement himself...that's objective. That stuff we can hear with our own ears. The fact that he's on the phone with his friend the same time that Zimmerman is on the phone with the 911 operator, that's objective evidence because phone records are objective.

It is only his credibility and his word that says Trayvon attacked him. And so to that end these recent developments are very important because the special prosecutor has sent a strong message that you have to tell the truth when you're in the court of law.

Trayvon Martin's mother, Sabrina Fulton said:

It's just nice to see so many people that support us, so many people that walk up to us just to give us a hug. Just to tell us that they support us. It does the heart good.Yes, we still are hurting. We just had to go through a Mother's Day and a Father's Day and it hurts. It just hurts. It's just good to know that there are good people and there are people who support us. We just want to say thank you and keep praying for us.

Attorney Daryl Parks said:

It's important that we really believe that, as all of this has unfolded, we've continued to move closer to justice.

For more information about tomorrow's panel discussion with the Martin family and legal team, contact Aprill Turner at (202) 649-0719 or aturner@nabj.org


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