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Documents shed new light on Trayvon Martin killing

May 18, 2012 • National News


This Feb. 27, 2012 photo released by the State Attorney’s Office shows George Zimmerman, the neighborhood†watch volunteer who shot Trayvon Martin, with blood on the back of his head. The photo and reports were among evidence released by prosecutors that also includes calls to police, video and numerous other documents. The package was received by defense lawyers earlier this week and released to the media on Thursday, May 17, 2012. (AP Photo/State Attorney’s Office)

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — Trayvon Martin was shot through the heart at close range. George Zimmerman had a broken nose, bruises and bloody cuts on the back of his head.

The lead investigator in the case wanted to charge Zimmerman with manslaughter in the weeks after the shooting but was overruled.

These are among the details revealed in nearly 200 pages of documents, photos and audio recordings released Thursday in a case that’s riveted the nation. Yet it’s still unclear what exactly happened and whether it was racially motivated.

The evidence supports Zimmerman’s contention that he was being beat up when he fired the fatal shot. At the same time, it bolsters the argument of Martin’s parents that Zimmerman was profiling Martin and that the whole confrontation could have been avoided if not for Zimmerman’s actions.

Many of the pertinent questions remain unclear: What was in Zimmerman’s mind when he began to follow Martin in the gated community where he lived? How did the confrontation between the two begin? Whose screams for help were captured on 911 calls? And why did Zimmerman feel that deadly force was warranted?

Another opportunity for answers isn’t likely to come until a hearing later this year in which Zimmerman is expected to claim the shooting was justified under Florida’s “stand your ground” law. Zimmerman’s attorney, Mark O’Mara, didn’t return a phone call seeking comment Thursday.

Martin’s autopsy indicated that medical examiners found THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, when they tested Martin’s blood and urine. The amount described in the autopsy report is such a low level that it would have played no role in Martin’s Login to read more

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