Attorney: Zimmerman Apology To Martin’s Family Was Ill-Timed

ORLANDO, Fla. (CBS Tampa/AP) — The attorney for George Zimmerman, the Florida neighborhood watch volunteer charged in the fatal shooting of an unarmed teen, now says Zimmerman wouldn’t have apologized during the bond hearing if they’d known the teen’s family felt it was the wrong time.

Zimmerman’s bond hearing Friday took a surprising turn when he took the witness stand and apologized to Trayvon Martin’s family for the loss of their son.

“I wanted to say I am sorry for the loss of your son. I did not know how old he was. I thought he was a little bit younger than I am. I did not know if he was armed or not,” Zimmerman said Friday.

But an attorney for Martin’s family spurned the apology.

“This was the most disingenuous and unfair thing I’ve seen,” Natalie Jackson, one of the attorneys for Tracy Martin and Sybrina Fulton, said Friday after the hearing. “This was the most unmeaningful apology.”

Speaking Monday on “CBS This Morning,” Zimmerman’s attorney, Mark O’Mara, said that if he’d known the family felt the timing of the apology was wrong, it wouldn’t have happened. O’Mara says Zimmerman simply wanted to reach out to the family.

“I apologize for that,” O’Mara told CBS News.

Zimmerman, who’s charged with second-degree murder, was released on bond late Sunday.

Zimmerman, 28, fatally shot Martin, 17, during an altercation on Feb. 26 inside the gated community where Zimmerman lived. Martin was unarmed and was walking back to the home of his father’s fiancée when Zimmerman saw him, called 911 and began following him. A fight broke out — investigators say it is unknown who started it.

Zimmerman says Martin, who was visiting from Miami, attacked him. Zimmerman says he shot Martin in self-defense, citing Florida’s “stand your ground” law, which gives broad legal protection to anyone who says they used deadly force because they feared death or great bodily harm.

(TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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