Trayvon's mom says 'shooting was accident,' Zimmerman to face judge
10:00 a.m. EST, April 12, 2012|
By Arelis R. HernÁndez and Susan Jacobson, Orlando Sentinel
George Zimmerman woke up in a Seminole County jail cell this morning as the mother of Trayvon Martin, the teen he killed, revealed on national television that she thinks the shooting was an accident.
Zimmerman is set to go before Judge Mark Herr at 1:30 p.m. today on a charge of second-degree murder.
Asked what she would like to ask to Zimmerman, Trayvon's mother, Sybrina Fulton, said on The Today Show that she wants an apology from him.
"I believe it was an accident. I believe it just got out of control and he couldn't turn the clock back," Fulton said, revealing her opinion about what happened the night her 17-year-old son was shot to death. "I would ask him, did he know that that was a minor, that that was a teenager and that he did not have a weapon."
Fulton said even if Zimmerman is found not guilty, the arrest achieves the goal of their campaign to raise awareness and bring him to justice.
"We just want him to be held accountable for what he done," Fulton said. "We are happy that he was arrested so that he can give his side of the story."
The case has been assigned to Circuit Court Judge Jessica Recksiedler.
Zimmerman was charged following an investigation by special prosecutor Angela Corey, who was asked by Gov. Rick Scott to take over the case.
The decision was met with relief from Trayvon's parents, attorneys and supporters nationwide. In Sanford, where the teen was killed, residents celebrated and clamored that justice was on its way.
Meanwhile, Zimmerman's new attorney Mark O'Mara told reporters outside his Orlando office Wednesday that he plans to ask a judge to grant bail for his client so Zimmerman can assist with his defense.
"He needs to be safe, but he doesn't need to be in a jail to be safe," O'Mara said. "He just has to be left alone and let the process work."
Zimmerman hired O'Mara after getting referrals from other lawyers and the two spoke for an hour Wednesday in several telephone conversations, O'Mara said.
He advised Zimmerman to remain calm and listen to his advice.
"I think he's troubled with the charges," O'Mara said. "I think that he is troubled with the last number of weeks of what he's had to go through. This isolation."
Fulton, alongside Trayvon's father and their attorney, said she sympathizes with Zimmerman's family but asked for their consideration.
"I understand that his family is hurting but think about our family, we lost our teenage son," she told Today Show anchor Ann Curry. "His parents can pick up the phone and call him, but we can't pick up the phone and call Trayvon any more."