George Zimmerman just seems to have nine lives. Every few months he pops up in the news for some type of mess, but the charges end up dropped. Now, he has evaded federal charges from he Department of Justice for the slaying of teenager Trayvon Martin. The DOJ has decided to not move ahead with charges due to lack of evidence.
Attorney General Eric Holder says that the investigation of George Zimmerman did not yield enough evidence that met the “high standard for a federal hate crime prosecution.” However, Holder is hoping that the highly publicized case will make room for more discourse about racial tension in the justice system.
In a statement, Holder said, “This young man’s premature death necessitates that we continue the dialogue and be unafraid of confronting the issues and tensions his passing brought to the surface. We, as a nation, must take concrete steps to ensure that such incidents do not occur in the future.”
The feds started investigating Zimmerman shortly after the fatal shooting that killed Trayvon Martin in 2012. They postponed to allow the prosecution to proceed during the trial, but resumed the investigation in July of 2013, the same month Zimmerman beat the case.
Federal agents reviewed evidence presented during the trial. They also independently conducted 75 witness interviews as well as reviewing the interactions George Zimmerman had with law enforcement after the fact.
Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta of the Civil Rights Division of the DOJ echoed Holder, “Our decision not to pursue federal charges does not condone the shooting that resulted in the death of Trayvon Martin and is based solely on the high legal standard applicable to these cases.”