The mother of slain black teenager Trayvon Martin said Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law allowed her son’s killer George Zimmerman to go free.
“Wrap your mind around no prom for Trayvon,” Sybrina Fulton said in an emotional speech at the Pennsylvania Convention Center on Friday.
“No high school graduation for Trayvon, no college for Trayvon, no grandkids coming from Trayvon, all because of a law that has prevented the person who shot and killed my son to be held accountable, and to pay for this awful crime. Trayvon was my son, but he is also your son,” she said.
On July 13, a jury in Florida said that Zimmerman’s fatal shooting of Martin was justified, acquitting him of second-degree murder and manslaughter.
Zimmerman said the fatal shooting, which took place on February 26, 2012, in the small city of Sanford, was in self-defense.
Fulton also expressed hope that his son’s death make a change to “Stand Your Ground” law.
"At times I feel like I'm a broken vessel. At times I don't know if I'm going or coming. But I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God is using me and God is using my family to make a change, to make a difference," Trayvon’s mother said.
“My message to you is please use my story, please use my tragedy, please use my broken heart to say to yourself, `We cannot let this happen to anybody else’s child,’” she added.
According to the “Stand Your Ground” law, people in Florida and about 30 other US states fearing for their lives can use deadly force without having to retreat from a confrontation, even when it is possible.