ORLANDO, Fla. (CBS Tampa/AP) — The mother of George Zimmerman slams the media in a public letter on the one-year anniversary of his arrest.
Gladys Zimmerman says the media has turned her son into a “mythological monster” for fatally shooting Trayvon Martin in February 2012.
“From the beginning, this case has been heavily publicized and a false narrative was developed surrounding a very real tragedy when there was little evidence available to the public,” she wrote. “It is astounding that despite the vast amount of information and evidence now available that supports George’s self-defense claim, the majority of the media avoids its publication. It is indeed alarming that even more media outlets do not regret misinforming the public and have not taken steps to retract the fabrications they are responsible for perpetuating.”
She says the “justice system failed” the day George Zimmerman was arrested for the death of Martin, claiming his incarceration was just to “placate the masses.” Zimmerman has claimed he shot the teenager in self-defense.
“The media, with the help of social media made it their prerogative to judge and sentence George before and after his arrest,” Gladys Zimmerman wrote in the letter that was posted on the Twitter account of her son, Robert Zimmerman Jr. “Even members of Congress and self-proclaimed ‘activists’ used and routinely use to this day the term ‘murderer’ when they speak of him – in effect they are re-enforcing the only acceptable judicial outcome in their eyes. Many have seen to it that he be judged by the public, the very public they were keen on misinforming.”
She also thanked those who have stood by George Zimmerman and called for everyone’s prayers.
“Pray also that an injustice such as this is never again allowed to occur within our great nation.”
Martin was fatally shot in February 2012 by Zimmerman – then a neighborhood watch volunteer — during a confrontation in a subdivision in Sanford, about 30 miles north of Orlando.
A month-and-a-half delay in Zimmerman’s arrest led to nationwide protests in the racially charged case.
Zimmerman has been charged with second-degree murder in Martin’s death. Zimmerman claims he was attacked and acted in self-defense, but Martin’s family claims he targeted the unarmed 17-year-old mainly because Martin was black. Zimmerman’s parents are white and Hispanic.
Martin’s parents have settled a wrongful-death claim against the homeowners association of the Florida subdivision where their son was killed.
(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 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.)