Protestors Call For Firing Of Sanford Police Chief Over Trayvon Martin Death

SANFORD (CBSMiami/AP) – Hundreds marched in front of a Sanford church as NAACP called for the firing of Sanford’s police chief.

“We will ensure that there is a new chief in Sanford,” said NAACP President Ben Jealous. “Any chief who has so mishandled a situation like this has to go.”

The investigation into the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin continued to take unexpected turns Tuesday as a grand jury and Department of Justice investigation were announced and a lawyer for the Martin family revealed the teen was on the phone in the moments leading up to his death.

Ben Crump, the attorney for the family of Trayvon Martin, 17, revealed Tuesday that Martin was on the phone with his 16-year-old girlfriend in the moments leading up to his death at the hands of Sanford, Florida neighborhood watch captain George Zimmerman.

“He saw who the last person was that Trayvon Martin talked to while he was alive. He called me late Sunday night and told me he had called the young lady and he told me, and I was just utterly shocked, when he told me the time that they talked,” said Crump.

Crump said the phone call proved that Zimmerman was lying when he said that Martin was up to no good. He played a recorded phone conversation with Trayvon’s girlfriend during a Tuesday morning press conference.

“Trayvon was going to run for it, and then he said he lost the man,” the girl was heard saying on the tape. “The man was just following him close; walking close to him like fast. And the man said, ‘What are you doing around here? I know someone pushed Trayvon because I heard the handset fell.”

Crump also said in his press conference that if Trayvon Martin had been the one who did the shoooting, the teen would be in jail already.

Crump’s statements came the same day it was announced that a central Florida grand jury is set to convene April 10th to investigate the shooting death of Miami Gardens teen Trayvon Martin at the hands of Sanford neighborhood watch captain George Zimmerman.

In a Tuesday statement, Seminole County State Attorney Norm Wolfinger urged the public to be patient as the grand jury investigation begins.

Crump said that his hope is that the state attorney doesn’t rely on the Samford Police Department for investigative help.

If the state attorney does rely on the Samford Police Crump said, “He’s (Zimmerman) going to get away scott-free with killing this kid. Because as we stand here today, I attest to you, that they never intended to arrest George Zimmerman…It would have been another black child killed and no one would have said a word.”

Late Monday afternoon, state Senator Oscar Branyon requested that Senate President Mike Haridopolos take a closer look at the so-called “stand your ground” law that the shooter of Martin is claiming as his defense.

The “stand your ground” law was passed in 2005 and since then, justifiable homicide has jumped 283 percent. Before the law was passed, there were on average 12 justifiable deaths per year. Since the law was passed the average has jumped to 35.

The grand jury announcement from the state attorney’s office came just hours after the U.S. Justice Department announced it was opening an investigation into the death of Martin.

“The Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Florida, and the FBI opened an investigation into the facts and circumstances of the shooting death of Trayvon Martin. The department will conduct a thorough and independent review of all of the evidence and take appropriate action at the conclusion of the investigation.”

Martin was shot and killed while walking from a store where he had just purchased a bag of Skittles and an iced tea for his younger brother. According to Sanford police, 28-year old George Zimmerman called 911 to report a suspicious person after he saw Martin walking back from the store.

Despite the emergency operator telling him not to confront Martin, Zimmerman allegedly approached the teenager. Witnesses said they two struggled and at one point Zimmerman pulled out a gun and shot Martin in the chest.

No charges were filed against Zimmerman who admitted to shooting the teen, but said he fired in self-defense.

A new 911 call made available Tuesday showed Zimmerman had a past calling 911. In a previous call, Zimmerman was heard using a racial slur against African-Americans under his breath.

Martin’s father is not accepting anything but justice.

“He destroyed a piece of my family and it is sad. As a father, I want justice for my son,” said Tracey Martin.

Sanford Police released eight 911 calls made during and after the shooting. On the first call Zimmerman told police he was following Martin and the teen was running. A dispatcher told Zimmerman not to follow Martin.

“This guy looks like he is up to no good. He is on drugs or something,” Zimmerman told the dispatcher. “These *expletives.* They always get away.”

Just after Zimmerman’s first call, 911 dispatchers were inundated with calls about a scuffle between two men, some screaming and then a gunshot.

“I just heard a shot right behind my house,” a male caller said. “They’re wrestling right behind my porch. The guy is yelling, “Help!” I’m not going outside.”


“He was yelling for help, and no one could help him. He saw his life being taken away from him,” said Tracey Martin.


Several rallies are planned for this week to demand justice for Martin’s family.


Wednesday, a peace march will be held in Liberty City starting at 5 p.m. The group will meet at Sherdavia Jenkins Peace Park to start the march. The family of Martin will be in attendance at the march.


On Thursday there will be two rallies. The New Black Panther Party plans to hold a rally in front of the Sanford Police Department at 1 p.m. The Rev. Al Sharpton will lead another rally at the First Shiloh Baptist Church in Sanford at 7 p.m. Sharpton is expected to join Sanford city leaders in a Tuesday evening town hall meeting to discuss with residents how the investigation is being handled.


A University of Miami student is organizing a bus trip to Sanford to take part in a rally on Monday, March 26th. The bus holds 55 passengers. Seats are $25 each. Deposits can be made via Pay Pal, no later than March 23rd. The bus will depart on Monday, March 26th at 8AM. For more info contact or


Trayvon’s parents said he was a good teenager and was working toward a career in aviation mechanics. They said he had never even been in a fight at school. In contrast, Zimmerman’s arrest record shows he’s been in trouble with the law before.


Prosecutors may have a hard time making a case if there is no one else around to contradict a person who claims self-defense, said David Hill, a criminal defense attorney in Orlando. So far, Sanford police have said there is no evidence to contradict Zimmerman’s claims.


(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.)


  • Murat Benjamin

    i think Zimmeman wanted to prove to the city what he`s capable of doing ,just shoot everey black person on his way.Justice,Justice,Justice.we all want.THKS





  • L.J. Williams

    This story makes me sick! Anyone who listened to Attorney Crump this morning should clearly understand that Zimmerman was clearly stalking this young boy…..with an intent to do harm. Haven’t we matured at all these past sixty years since Dr. King preached “peace”? Are we that fk’d up to still want to kill because of the color of someone’s skin? No wonder Blacks don’t like or trust Whites in this day and age. If the Sanford police department covered anything or withheld anything…they ALL should go to jail. Prayers to the family of the slain boy!!!

  • flochow

    I they fail to prosecute this man for MURDER, I advocate forming a vigilante committee and getting street justice; the same kind he gave that kid.,

    • Russ Campbell

      This is exactly the attitude that we DO NOT NEED, Zimmerman was wrong, and the Sanford Police Chief should be charged. But for us to have another race riot like Miami when McDuffy was killed or like LA, is just wrong. This is not a race issue, this is an issue where a murdering racist wannabee self appointed stalker was allowed to walk free after the police had information to show he committed a crime. White, Blacks, Hispanics, everyone is angry because Trayvon was killed for no reason. We need to unite and stop this attitude among idiots and police who think they are better then US citizens. So please rethink this attitude that you have, and let’s NOT have vigilante justice, just real justice as Trayvon deserves.

  • TOMG


  • poorwhiteboy

    Give Sharpton a bag of Skittles and tell him to run. Target practice

  • ashley hogan

    wana be cop running around thinking he is the authority targeting an innocent teenager. he need to get shot the chest POS…..

  • Randolley

    Sick and tired of hearing about this case. Let it go. The kid ain’t coming back. Wait on the dude to come outside and take care of the situation yo-self. Don’t wait on courts in Florida. Casey Anthony got off too.

  • Shaniquia Utley

    It is clearly ashame that the police department has been forced due to media outlash to do something about this child being murdered. It seems to me that Zimmerman has been harrassing this neighborhood for months, Anyone who thinks that this man should not ne arrested and charge with murder. I heard the police say they were considering manslauighter. This was clearly premeditated. When he got out his car with a gun he had already decided he was going to kill this young man.

    • Russ Campbell

      Well said

  • Bill W

    Well it appears you folks have already convicted this fellow, all that’s left is to get a rope and find a tree.

  • Russ Campbell

    The writer of this story needs to learn to proofread his ‘work’ or have another proofread, is it Samford or Sanford? I know that the the name of Sanford Florida did not change while this story was being written, very unprofessional writing

  • Hilda Johannes

    If this man’s actions are right, then I would be right shooting him down, I feel threatened with people like him walking around. What is the Sanford police going do to me.

  • Disgusted with the "race card"

    It’s a shame when many comments pull out the race card…Point is, I don’t care what race or ethnic group you are from, the “gated community” means your tresspassing in a space that isn’t yours!!! Mr. Zimmerman, come protect my neighborhood! After thoroughly reading the reports, it is apparent rough reading It is a tragedy that this young man wasn’t taught the simple rules of respect for someone else’s space, unless his intentions truly were not on the up and up.

  • Disgusted with the "race card"

    Ok, so I should have done editing! Ignore, “After thoroughly reading the reports, it is apparent rough reading”. (busy family!)

  • Hilda Johannes

    This is not a race issue. This is a right or wrong issue. This man’s rights for killing a child was not right. I don’t care who’s space it is. Not even a dog has the right to be killed.

  • Annie

    Mr. Zimmerman, just remember, what goes around, comes back around.All you ignorant people who agrees with him, put yourself, in Trayvon’s and his family’s position. What if it was your child, surely you wouldn’t feel the same way. If you are a human being, you know this is incorrect. Walking in a neighborhood coming from a store, with skittles, and iced tea, warrants to be gunned down, just because you don’t know why he’s in your gated community. I’m just going to be frank, most caucasion people would have someone arrested, for harming their dog and or cat, not to mention their child. Remember, let’s continue to pray for the enemy

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