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Florida man found guilty of attempting to murder George Zimmerman: report

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A Florida man was found guilty on Friday of attempted murder for shooting at George Zimmerman during a roadside confrontation with the ex-neighborhood watch captain widely known for killing unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin, local media reported.

Matthew Apperson, 37, who according to prosecutors has a history of mental illness, was convicted in a jury trial in the Orlando suburb of Sanford, Florida, according to accounts by the Orlando Sentinel newspaper and 24-hour Orlando television news channel News 13.

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A Sanford jury in 2013 acquitted Zimmerman, 32, of murder in the fatal 2012 shooting of 17-year-old Martin, a case that helped spark the Black Lives Matter movement and overshadowed both Apperson’s prosecution and his defense.

Police asserted in their arrest affidavit for Apperson that he seemed to have a fixation on Zimmerman, who claimed to have acted in self-defense when he shot Martin, a high school student walking through the community after stopping at a convenience store. Police initially declined to arrest Zimmerman, citing Florida’s so-called “Stand Your Ground” law.

Apperson’s lawyer in turn questioned Zimmerman on the witness stand, getting Zimmerman to acknowledge that he had sold the gun used to shoot Martin for $250,000 and considers Black Lives Matter activists to be “terrorists,” according to the Orlando Sentinel.

In addition to second-degree attempted murder, Apperson was convicted on charges of shooting into an occupied vehicle and aggravated assault with a firearm stemming from his altercation with Zimmerman in Lake Mary, Florida, according to the Sentinel.

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Apperson has been in custody since July 2015, when Seminole County Circuit Judge Debra Nelson revoked his bond following a complaint that he urinated on his neighbor’s porch.

In that incident, Apperson was found guilty of disorderly conduct at trial in October 2015, and sentenced to 60 days in jail with credit for time served, according to court records.

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(Reporting by Barbara Liston in Orlando; Writing by Steve Gorman; Editing by Bernard Orr)

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… then let us make a small request. Like you, we here at Raw Story believe in the power of progressive journalism — and we’re investing in investigative reporting as other publications give it the ax. Raw Story readers power David Cay Johnston’s DCReport, which we've expanded to keep watch in Washington. We’ve exposed billionaire tax evasion and uncovered White House efforts to poison our water. We’ve revealed financial scams that prey on veterans, and efforts to harm workers exploited by abusive bosses. We’ve launched a weekly podcast, “We’ve Got Issues,” focused on issues, not tweets. Unlike other news sites, we’ve decided to make our original content free. But we need your support to do what we do.

Raw Story is independent. You won’t find mainstream media bias here. We’re not part of a conglomerate, or a project of venture capital bros. From unflinching coverage of racism, to revealing efforts to erode our rights, Raw Story will continue to expose hypocrisy and harm. Unhinged from corporate overlords, we fight to ensure no one is forgotten.

We need your support to keep producing quality journalism and deepen our investigative reporting. Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Invest with us in the future. Make a one-time contribution to Raw Story Investigates, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you.



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He ‘knows where lots of Trump bodies are buried’: Ex-Mueller associate says president’s latest dissension spells trouble

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President Donald Trump has reportedly fallen out with a decades-long friend, private equity real estate investor Tom Barrack, who is currently the focus of a federal investigation into how the money from Trump's inaugural fund was raised and spent.

On Monday, former federal prosecutor Glenn Kirschner laid out a key reason why Trump may want to distance himself from Barrack at this point:

Televised hearings are in our future (can’t come soon enough). Tom Barrack knows where lots of Trump’s bodies are buried (figuratively speaking), inaugural committee bodies and others. Let’s hope Barrack is already quietly assisting prosecutors. https://t.co/BlgsiaX0YP

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Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro takes on Norway for whaling, but bungles it

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Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro on Monday responded to Norway's decision to halt its forest protection subsidies, taking to Twitter to criticise the Scandinavian country for its whaling practice and post spectacular -- albeit misleading -- images.

"Look at the killing of whales sponsored by Norway," Bolsonaro wrote on Twitter.

The post includes a video and photographs of a spectacular whale hunt, where mammals in the shallow waters of a bay are slaughtered by people wading on shore, armed with hooked knives. The whales' blood turns the waters red.

However, the images, reportedly taken on May 29 in Norway, illustrate a "grind", a type of pilot whale hunt practised exclusively in the Faroe Islands -- a Danish territory in the North Atlantic.

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Orange County teens busted for singing obscure Nazi song while giving Hitler salutes

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Nearly a dozen high school students from Southern California delivered Nazi salutes and sang a Nazi marching song in a video posted on social media.

The video was uploaded to Instagram by one member of the boys’ water polo team at Pacifica High School in Garden Grove, California, along with lyrics to the song played for German troops during World War II, reported The Daily Beast.

A spokesperson for the Garden Grove Unified School District told the website administrators learned of the incident in March, four months after the video was posted, but declined to say whether any of the students were disciplined.

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