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George Zimmerman 'to be charged' over Trayvon Martin death

Text by News Wires

Latest update : 2012-04-12

Neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman, who shot and killed unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin in Florida, is to be charged Wednesday over the 17-year-old's death, a source close to state prosecutors said.

AFP - The neighborhood watch volunteer who shot dead an unarmed US black teen in Florida in February will be charged on Wednesday, a source close to state prosecutors said.

George Zimmerman "will be charged this afternoon" over the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, the source said, confirming earlier media reports.

The special prosecutor in the case, Angela Corey, was to hold a press conference at 6:00 pm (2200 GMT), her office said. It was not immediately clear what charges would be filed.

The Martin case has sparked a national uproar about race relations and the right to self-defense in the United States.

A controversial Florida law allows the use of deadly force when a person senses a reasonable fear that he is in danger of being killed or of serious injury.

Zimmerman -- who has not been seen in public since the shooting -- is Hispanic. On Tuesday, his attorneys withdrew from the case, saying they had lost contact with him.

Martin's family and supporters say the teen may have been the victim of racial profiling, and killed in cold blood.

Zimmerman's supporters have countered that Martin attacked first, breaking Zimmerman's nose before knocking him to the ground and repeatedly slamming his head against the sidewalk. They insist Zimmerman fired in self-defense.

Date created : 2012-04-11

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