Trayvon Martin’s girlfriend told ABC News late Monday night her final phone conversation with him before he was shot dead by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman.
The girl, whose parents requested not to make her name public, was questioned by the Martin family’s attorney Benjamin Crump and described that her boyfriend was cornered by Zimmerman.
“He said this man was watching him, so he put his hoodie on,” she said. “He said he lost the man. I asked Trayvon to run, and he said he was going to walk fast. I told him to run but he said he was not going to run.”
“Trayvon said, ‘What, are you following me for.’ And the man said, ‘What are you doing here.’ Next thing I hear is somebody pushing, and somebody pushed Trayvon because the head set just fell. I called him again and he didn’t answer the phone.”
The Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) announced Monday evening that it will investigate into the case as a possible hate crime.
The DOJ’s decision comes after growing requests to take up the case from Martin’s parents, Congressional Black Caucus, and overall national outrage.
“The (DOJ) will conduct a thorough and independent review of all of the evidence and take appropriate action at the conclusion of the investigation,” the agency said in a statement. “The department also is providing assistance to and cooperating with the state officials in their investigation into the incident.”
“With all federal civil rights crimes, the government must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a person acted intentionally and with the specific intent to do something which the law forbids — the highest level of intent in criminal law. Negligence, recklessness, mistakes and accidents are not prosecutable under the federal criminal civil rights laws. The Community Relations Service will be in Sanford, Fla., this week to meet with civil rights leaders, community leaders and local law enforcement to address tension in the community.”
Martin, 17, was shot and killed by 28-year-old Zimmerman last month while he walking from a store with a bag of Skitties and an iced tea. Zimmerman, who claimed he shot Martin in self-defense, has not been arrested or charged.
Martin’s parents have claimed in interviews that Zimmerman targeted their son because of his skin color. Their attorney, Ben Crump, feels that Zimmerman “has no legal recourse” in the case despite Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law providing cops legal cover for using deadly force without retreating.
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