After more than a year, a jury has issued its verdict on the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin at the hands of George Zimmerman. After more than 16 hours of deliberation, the jury found Zimmerman not guilty.
As the jury found him not guilty of second-degree murder of killing the Miami Gardens teen, Zimmerman blinked and barely smiled.
After hearing the verdict, Judge Debra Nelson told Zimmerman he was free to go.
The verdict was the culmination of a case that started on February 26, 2012. It was on that night Trayvon Martin was walking back from a convenience store through a neighborhood. Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer, saw Martin and began to follow him.
What happened next is only known by Zimmerman and the late Martin. Neighbors heard the scuffle and dialed 911 and then a shot rang out. When authorities arrived, Zimmerman was still on the scene and Martin lay on the ground dead from a gunshot wound.
CBS4’s Jim DeFede spoke with University of Miami law school professor Donald Jones and Miami-Dade Community Relations Board member Dr. Larry Capp about the role that race played in the trial.
Click on the image below to watch the discussion.