FBI: Zimmerman no racist
Thu, July 12, 2012 - 12:45 PM
(CNN) -- George Zimmerman, charged with second-degree murder in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, had a "little hero complex" but was not a racist, a Sanford, Florida, homicide investigator told federal agents, according to reports released today.
In an interview with FBI agents in March, investigator Chris Serino told authorities he "believed that Zimmerman's actions were not based on Martin's skin colour, rather based on his attire, the total circumstances of the encounter and the previous burglary suspects in the community," according to an FBI report.
The reports and other information in the second-degree murder case against Zimmerman were released today by Special Prosecutor Angela Corey to Zimmerman's attorney.
The U.S. Department of Justice took up a civil rights investigation following allegations that race played a part in the killing of Martin, 17, in February in a gated community in Sanford, Florida. The reports released Thursday do not draw conclusions in that investigation.
Martin's family and supporters say Zimmerman racially profiled the teen, describing him as "suspicious" during a 911 call and ignoring a police dispatcher's request that he not follow him.
The 28-year-old neighbourhood watch volunteer has said he killed Martin in self-defense, saying the teen punched him and slammed his head into a sidewalk before the shooting, according to family members and police.
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