Florida State Attorney's Office takes over case of neighborhood watch captain who shot unarmed teen
POSTED: Saturday, March 17, 2012 - 9:00am
UPDATED: Saturday, March 17, 2012 - 9:04am
NBC NATIONAL NEWS — The controversial case of an unarmed teen shot to death by a neighborhood watch captain in a Sanford, Florida neighborhood has been handed over to the State Attorney's Office.
The State Attorney will decide whether to criminally charge neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman in the teen's death.
"In this case, Mr. Zimmerman has made the argument of self-defense," Sanford Police Chief Bill Lee said. "We don't have the grounds to arrest him."
Attorney Natalie Jackson, who is representing Martin's family, said Zimmerman, 25, should be arrested and charged with the 17-year-old's death.
The family says they want justice.
"My son left Sanford, Florida in a body bag," said Martin's father, Tracy Martin. "While George Zimmerman went home to to go to sleep in his own bed. It's senseless and the police in Sanford, isn't giving any answers and we actually feel that justice hasn't been served and isn't being served."
Jackson said Martin was unarmed while walking back to his father's home from a convenience store.
He was carrying a bag with Skittles and iced tea inside.
When Zimmerman spotted him, he called 911 to report a "suspicious-looking" person.
According to the family's attorney, Zimmerman then disregarded a 911 operator's instructions not to approach the teen.
Martin was shot and killed in ensuing the confrontation.
"I don't know if the whole thing was a racial issue, it may have been a 'Zimmerman wants to be a hero' issue. It becomes racial because Zimmerman thought that black males with hoodies are criminals," Jackson said.