Family attorney: Trayvon Martin's parents pleased with reforms in 'Stand Your Ground' legislation

Compromise reached in Tallahassee seen as positive first step

Syrbrina Fulton and Tracy Martin / Headline SurferHeadline Surfer photo / Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin are shown in this screeenshort from an exclusive video interview in Miami weeks after their 17-year-old son, Trayvon Martin, was shot to death in a Sanford neighborhood by George Zimmerman.

SANFORD --  Nearly three months after George Zimmerman walked out of the Seminole County Criminal Justice Center courtroom acquitted of second-degree murder in the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, the slain teen's parents may finally be realizing a dream for change.

That change is in the legislation being discussed in Tallahassee modifying the so-called "Stand Your Ground" defense that Zimmerman used as a defense in firing a fatal shot through the heart of the unarmed teen the night of Feb. 26, 2012.

Today in Tallahassee the democratic process won out and a first compromise was reached,” said attorney Benjamin Crump who represents Trayvon Martin's family.   

The Senate Judiciary Committee voted 7-2 to forward a bill that made some important changes to Florida's Stand Your Ground law.  This will ensure proper investigations are conducted even when Stand Your Ground is claimed, involve Police and Sheriff's Departments in training Neighborhood Watch Programs and most importantly tighten the use of the law when aggressors claim it.  

"I see this as an important first step in making sure that Florida's Stand Your Ground Law properly protects victims and applaud the committee for taking this first step" Crump told Headline Surfer.  "In light of current events in Washington D.C., It is refreshing to see legislators compromising and working together so that Florida's citizens are protected."

Benjamin Crump attorney for Trayvon Martin's family / Headline Surfer"I see this as an important first step in making sure that Florida's Stand Your Ground Law properly protects victims and applaud the committee for taking this first step" Crump told Headline Surfer.  "In light of current events in Washington D.C., It is refreshing to see legislators compromising and working together so that Florida's citizens are protected."  

Sybrina Fulton, mother of the slain teen, said she and his father, are pleased as well.

"Tracy and I have said from the beginning that our hope is that the tragedy of Trayvon's death can be turned into real change so that other parents don't have to experience the grief we have endured" Fulton said in a statement released through Crump.

"The work here is not done and we fear an uphill battle going forward to achieve real change in our son's name. We encourage everyone to visit changefortrayvon.com and help us ensure that real change for Trayvon occurs in Florida and other states across the country."

Editor's Note: Henry Frederick has been involved in the reporting of the Trayvon Martin slaying almost from the onset, including getting one of the first on-camera video interviews with his parents, covering subsequent marches in Central Florida and the trial for George Zimmerman, ultimately acquitted of 2nd-degree murder in the unarmed teen's death. Frederick is writing a book, "Creepy Ass Cracker" which should hit bookstores by the end of the year. Frederick also won an award for the second year in a row from the Florida Press Club for coverage of the case, this time for a legal explainer on speedy trial provisions related to Zimmerman's pre-trial bail hearing. Frederick won an award in 2012 for his exclusive video interview with Trayvon's parents in Miami. In the past two years Frederick has won seven Florida Press Club awards overall for journalism stories as publisher of Headline Surfer.

 

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Short Bio

Henry Frederick is publisher of Headline Surfer®, the award-winning 24/7 internet news outlet covering the Daytona Beach-Sanford-Orlando metro area via HeadlineSurfer.com since 2008. A longtime cops & courts reporter focused on breaking news & investigative reporting, Frederick is among the Sunshine State's most prolific daily news reporters, having amassed close to a hundred award-winning byline stories nearly evenly split in print and digital platforms. Frederick earned his Master of Arts in New Media Journalism with academic honors from Full Sail University in Winter Park in February 2019. He was a metro reporter with the Daytona Beach News-Journal for nearly a decade and then served as a city editor for the Taunton Daily Gazette in Taunton, Mass, while maintaining a residence in Central Florida. Prior to moving to Florida, Frederick was a metro reporter for the Rockland Journal-News in West Nyack, NY, for seven years. Headline Surfer was named the Sunshine State's top internet news site by the Florida Press Club in 2018.