Thursday, April 5, 2012

Zimmerman/Martin Part 4 - Another First!

OK, this is absolutely a first. Part 4 of an ongoing story. It seems another media outlet has admitted they were giving out fals… uh – wrong information concerning the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin case. That’s three networks in the last few days that have said they were reporting information that was not true.

Earlier this week, NBC announced that the 911 audio tape they had been playing, which seemed to indicate George Zimmerman profiling Trayvon Martin as black while Zimmerman was watching and following him through his (Zimmerman’s) neighborhood, had been edited to make it sound different than the original tape. On the original tape Zimmerman mentioned nothing of Martin’s color until he was asked specifically by the 911 operator and Zimmerman’s response was “I think he’s black.”

ABC put out a copy of a police video showing George Zimmerman being escorted, in handcuffs, into the Sanford police department for questioning. (This in itself was interesting since the early reports simply said Zimmerman told police he shot in self defense and was he was released – sounding like he was never really questioned about the incident.) ABC said the tape clearly showed Zimmerman had no injuries or blood on him and the he was obviously lying about Martin hitting him and banging his head on the ground. A couple of days later ABC enhanced the video tape and it clearly does show injuries to the back of Zimmerman’s head. It was also learned that the police had taken Zimmerman for medical treatment before taking him to the police

Last week CNN reported that George Zimmerman had made the statement “f**king coons” to the 911 operator during the telephone call. They used that to determine the motive for Zimmerman shooting Martin was obviously racial. Today, CNN says they have enhanced the audio tape and while they can’t be positive, it sounds very much like Zimmerman actually said “f**king cold” rather than making a racial slur.

I find myself close to retracting my original opinion on this entire case based on the false information we were all given by the media over the last couple of weeks. What I know to be true right now is that George Zimmerman was patrolling the neighborhood armed with a gun, which was not, in itself, illegal since he was licensed to carry concealed. He saw Martin and called 911 reporting a “suspicious guy” walking through the neighborhood. He apparently did not make any racial slurs but he did get out of his vehicle and follow Martin against the advice of the 911 operator. (Again, I don’t think this is illegal in any way. It might not be smart but that’s not a crime.)

Somehow the two met face to face and an altercation ensued. Zimmerman says he was in fear of his life and shot Martin in self defense. While I’m not sure about the self defense part I do believe Zimmerman probably was in fear for his life since witnesses say Martin was on top of Zimmerman and beating him about the head.

I have said all along that the key to this entire case is that initial contact between Zimmerman and Martin and what happened at that moment. Zimmerman says he turned back and Martin then followed him and attacked him. Others think (but there are apparently no witnesses) that Zimmerman accosted Martin and Martin simply go the best of this situation. Hopefully the ongoing investigation will reveal the whole truth, without media distortion, of what really happened. Until then I hope people can remain calm and open minded about the truth of the case and back off of convicting anyone of anything until ALL the facts are known.

Either way you look at it – George Zimmerman’s life, as he knew it, is over. If he’s tried and convicted he’ll suffer the consequences of his actions. If the investigation exonerates him of any crime those who believe him guilty will never allow him to have a normal life (and I believe his life will be in danger if that happens.)

Trayvon Martin’s death was a tragedy. Anytime a 17 year old kid dies it's a tragedy. I would be willing to bet that George Zimmerman would take it all back in a minute if he could. Of course, that’s just my opinion – I could be wrong. (With apologies to Dennis Miller.)

I thought I had this ready to publish then something else occurred to me. What will happen if the FBI and the independent investigators decide George Zimmerman was attacked by Trayvon Martin, as Zimmerman said, and Zimmerman was justified in shooting him in self defense? Are those who have already convicted him going to discount the new investigation(s) in favor of their own conclusions based on what they believe is the truth? How many people will decide the new investigators obviously have no credibility either because George Zimmerman is guilty of something??!!!! There is a very scary situation going on here that could get even worse before it gets better. I would ask each and every one of you who has already convicted Zimmerman to wait for the complete truth. As my good friend (who is a police officer and former homicide detective) has said more than once: “You weren’t there. You don’t know what really happened.” Let’s please all leave it to the professional law enforcement officials to determine the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

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