In an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity on Wednesday, George Zimmerman said he was sorry for fatally shooting Florida teen Trayvon Martin.
“My wife and I don’t have any children,” he said. “I have nephews that I love more than life. I love them more than myself. And I know when they were born, it was a different unique bond and love that I have with them. And I love my children even though that they aren’t born yet. I am sorry that they buried their child. I can’t imagine what it must feel like. And I pray for them daily.”
Zimmerman has been charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of Martin, an unarmed African American teenager. He has pleaded not guilty to the charge, claiming he shot Martin in self defense, which is legally permitted in Florida under a controversial “Stand Your Ground” law that sanctions lethal force if a person claims they were in fear for their life.
Earlier this month, he was released from a Florida jail after posting a $1 million bond.
Zimmerman told police that he had followed Martin on foot, but eventually lost sight of him and turned around to walk back to his SUV. That is when, according to Zimmerman’s account, Martin approached him from behind and confronted him. .
“He asked me what my problem was,” Zimmerman said.
Zimmerman said that Martin punched him in the nose, knocking him down, and then began banging his head into the ground. That is when Zimmerman allegedly shot Martin.
Zimmerman was not arrested the night of the shooting, a fact that later sparked outrage and helped give the incident national attention. Many have speculated that Zimmerman was motivated to follow Martin because he was black.
“I am not a racist and I am not a murderer,” Zimmerman said.
Watch video, via Mediaite, below:
[Ed. note: Updated to include full interview]