Trayvon Martin's parents: Neighborhood watch death not God's plan

MIRAMAR, Florida - The parents of the unarmed black U.S. teen who was shot and killed by a neighborhood watch volunteer rejected the shooter's claim that the death was a part of God's plan.

In an interview with Fox News televised Wednesday, George Zimmerman said he felt the course of the night 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was killed "was all God's plan."

"We must worship a different God," Martin's father, Tracy Martin, told The Associated Press. "There is no way that my God wanted George Zimmerman to murder my teenage son."

The shooting in February led to weeks of nationwide protests over race and self-defense laws as police didn't arrest Zimmerman for more than month. Zimmerman now faces a charge of second-degree murder. He claims Martin attacked him and has pleaded not guilty, claiming self-defense under Florida's "stand your ground" law.

The Fox News interview was Zimmerman's first lengthy television interview and was conducted at an undisclosed location in Florida, where he must remain under conditions of his release on $1 million bail.

Zimmerman said he'd like to talk with Martin's parents about what happened.

"Absolutely not," the teen's mother, Sybrina Fulton, said in response Thursday on NBC's "Today" show.

Zimmerman said he would like to tell Martin's parents he was sorry about the teen's death.

"I can't imagine what it must feel like. And I pray for them daily," he said.

When asked what he meant when he told a police dispatcher he was following Martin, Zimmerman said he was trying to keep an eye on Martin to tell police.

Whether Zimmerman was the aggressor plays a major role in his self-defense claim.

Zimmerman said he looked down to try to find his cellphone and when he looked up, Martin punched him and broke his nose. Then, he said, Martin straddled him and started slamming his head down.

"He started bashing my head into the concrete sidewalk. I was disoriented," Zimmerman said, adding that it was at that point he began to fear for his life -- another key element in his self-defense claim.

He said as the two were struggling, Martin said "you're going to die tonight." Zimmerman said he yelled out for help multiple times -- shouts captured on emergency calls by local residents.

Martin's parents have said they believe it was their son who was yelling for help.

Zimmerman also said racial profiling had nothing to do with the confrontation.

"I'm not a racist and I'm not a murderer," he said.

Print this article Back to Top

Comments

Related Stories

George Zimmerman will not face domestic violence charges, prosecutor says George Zimmerman will not face domestic violence charges, prosecutor says

Prosecutors say they will not file domestic violence charges against George Zimmerman after his girlfriend said in a sworn statement she did not want to pursue the case.

George Zimmerman released from jail after court hearing George Zimmerman released from jail after court hearing

George Zimmerman has been released from jail hours after his first court appearance on domestic violence-related charges.

George Zimmerman George Zimmerman's estranged wife Shellie won't press charges despite 911 call

The 911 call seemed frantic: George Zimmerman's sobbing estranged wife said he was threatening her and her father with a gun and she feared for her life. Please come.

George Zimmerman caught speeding again, given a $256 ticket George Zimmerman caught speeding again, given a $256 ticket

Former neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman apparently has a lead foot.

Florida Juror B29 to ABC News: George Zimmerman got away with murder in death of Trayvon Martin Florida Juror B29 to ABC News: George Zimmerman got away with murder in death of Trayvon Martin

Another juror comes out from the shadows in the aftermath of the George Zimmerman verdict, sitting down with ABC News' Robin Roberts.

Ohio gun group raises $12K for George Zimmerman Ohio gun group raises $12K for George Zimmerman

An Ohio firearms group has raised more than $12,000 to buy guns or a security system for George Zimmerman.

Officials: George Zimmerman helped 4 out of wrecked SUV Officials: George Zimmerman helped 4 out of wrecked SUV

Officials say George Zimmerman helped rescue four people from an overturned vehicle last week, just days after he was cleared of all charges in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

Four George Zimmerman jurors release statement about trial Four George Zimmerman jurors release statement about trial

Four of the jurors at the George Zimmerman trial distanced themselves late Tuesday from statements that another juror made in a televised interview.

George Zimmerman verdict protesters raid Los Angeles store, stop freeway George Zimmerman verdict protesters raid Los Angeles store, stop freeway

Protesters ran through Los Angeles streets Monday night, breaking windows, attacking people on sidewalks and at one point raiding a Wal-Mart store in  demonstrations over George Zimmerman's Florida acquittal in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

Juror: George Zimmerman had right to defend himself Juror: George Zimmerman had right to defend himself

A juror in the George Zimmerman trial said Monday that the actions of the neighborhood watch volunteer and Trayvon Martin both led to the teenager's fatal shooting last year, but that Zimmerman didn't actually break the law.