George Zimmerman Defense: Trayvon Martin Struck First, Tried to Grab Gun, Killer Claims

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George Zimmerman, the man who shot and killed Florida teen Trayvon Martin, claims the teen was the aggressor, laying him out with a single punch, smashing his head on the ground repeatedly and trying to grab his gun, he tells police.

The neighborhood watch captain has not spoken publicly, but Zimmerman’s version of the nationally controversial Trayvon Martin case leaked on Monday.

The Orlando Sentinel reports that George Zimmerman told police he lost 17-year-old Martin in the Sanford, Fla., neighborhood he regularly patrolled.

George Zimmerman Mug Shot
Trayvon Martin Photo

He was walking back to his vehicle, he says, when the youth approached him from behind. The two exchanged words briefly then, Zimmerman said.

It was at that point that he claims Martin then punched him, jumped on top of him and began banging Zimmerman's head on the sidewalk.

Zimmerman said he cried for help; Martin's family thinks it was their son who was crying out. Witness accounts differ and 911 tapes are not clear.

A statement from Sanford police, who have not charged Zimmerman, said the Sentinel story was "consistent" with evidence turned over to prosecutors.

Because Martin was black and Zimmerman has a white father and Hispanic mother, the case has become a racial flashpoint that has civil rights leaders and others leading a series of protests in Sanford and around the country.

To the dismay of millions, Geraldo Rivera claimed Martin made himself a target with his hoodie. President Obama even spoke out about the case.

Meanwhile, Martin's parents are blaming police for leaking information about their son being suspended from school for marijuana. Martin's mother, Sybrina Fulton, and family attorneys said it was part of an effort to demonize her son.

"They killed my son and now they're trying to kill his reputation," Fulton told reporters.

Martin was suspended by Miami-Dade County schools because traces of marijuana were found in a plastic baggie in his book bag, family spokesman Ryan Julison said. Martin was serving the suspension when he was killed.

Martin family attorney Benjamin Crump said the link between the youth and marijuana have no bearing on the probe into his shooting death. State and federal agencies are investigating, with a grand jury set to convene April 10.

Sanford Police insist there was no authorized release of the information but acknowledged there may have been a leak. The City Manager, Norton Bonaparte, Jr., said it would be investigated and the person responsible could be fired.

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Could everyone please cool it? This kid's parents are of course beside themselves with grief that their teenage son is now dead but they don't have all the information and they should be advised to keep it quiet until the investigation is over. The same thing happened here in Westchester County, NY with Danroy Henry being shot and killed by police and in the end Danroy was in the wrong. Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and the President of the United States also should shut it until the whole thing has been investigated. There are witnesses to this and nobody has heard from them. This is a tragic story but everyone is being led by the nose by the media crap out there. We are adults here and should be able to keep cooler heads.

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You all make me chuckle at your 1 sidedness. None of us were there, we have no idea what happened. All we have to go on is what the media has told us. Have any of you actually listened to the 911 tapes? my favorite part is when the 911 dispatcher (who is in no way a cop or officer of the law) says the Zimmerman doesnt need to follow Trayvon. what does Zimmerman say? "ok" and stops his "persuit" As he is walking back to his car, Trayvon comes at him.... trayvon initiated the attacks which makes him the aggressor. Zimmerman shot in self defense AFTER screaming for help from the eye witness who runs away. The same eye witness that ran away has corroborated Zimmerman's story. EMT showed up Zimmerman was bleeding from his face and the back of his head. Evidence seems to show he was attacked. but you guys are all correct, zimmerman chased down trayvon beat him up then shot him dead purely because he was black........ idiots

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First they need to put a picture up of how the boy looked at the time of the shooting, not when he was 12 or 13...big difference..if it was a gated community, what was the boy doing there??? I am not saying the man should have shot the boy, I don't know, I wasn't there and neither were any of you! I am just saying people need to look at both sides, the man has rights too. And why do people want to say everything is rasist?? Why does the man that shot the boy have a broken nose and other signs of being assulted??? Just stating we all need to stand back and look at the WHOLE picture, and start it off by changing the picture of Trayvon to a more recent picture.

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Skinny, it varies by state and I do not live in Florida. If that is their law, I can understand your point of view. It is our responsibility to remain unbiased and allow the wheels of justice to turn. If the media could just get the same message!

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I know Boe, it's not all put there yet. ....just responding to reports that drug/alcohol tests weren't done as per protocol, if something's a SOP you do it. We all say we hate armchair quarterbacking but truth is, it happens.

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LEO is law enforcement officer. @Skinny Minny I have been a police officer for over 20 years and I am shocked that another officer would second guess police work when they do not have all the facts. Most officers hate monday morning quarterbacks. All GOOD cops know to review the facts and evidence, not jump to conclusions.

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Hey 67/Leo/Neci- did you get Skinnys message?

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Hey Leo- did you get that? Huh?

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I still argue Zimmerman made the mistake by following the kid after dispatch advised him not to. This is why we have LEOs, the ones capable of handling the contact. We carry more than a gun and possess the training an experience to handle such situations. Zimmerman was not a cop! He should not have made the contact. That said I'm not pleased with how police have handled this as a LEO myself.

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I do agree...truth will come out alright. In the meantime, the public is being mercilessly subjected to the retro-60's-Civil Rights circus created by Obama, Sharpton, Jackson and the Black Panthers, the ghetto "boy scouts" of black rage revenge! Yes, this crowd is dedicated and focused on "starting fires" all over to stir up the media hype! And when whites have been brutally murdered by blacks unjustly? Where's Barack? Al? Jesse? And the Panther platoon? Ohhhhh...they can't be found--and they can't be bothered! Thus, their antics have zero to do with honestly attempting to obtain true racial equality in America. So don't be fooled by this display of hypocrisy!