Gov. Rick Scott is asking Floridians to “allow our justice system” to work in a statement that appears to be urging calm in the wake of an anticipated announcement of charges in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.
Special prosecutor Angela Corey is expected to announce this evening she is filing charges against George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer who claimed he shot the unarmed 17-year-old on Feb. 26 in self defense.
More than an hour before Corey’s announcement, expected at 6 p.m., Scott’s office issued the following statement, attributed to the governor:
“We are fortunate in our state that most Floridians and local civic leaders are law-abiding, responsible citizens who all want justice to prevail. No matter what State Attorney Corey determines following her investigation of the Trayvon Martin tragedy, I trust in the goodness of all Florida citizens to allow our justice system to reach an appropriate conclusion in this case.”
Scott spokeswoman Amy Graham would not elaborate on the statement or why it was issued before Corey, appointed by Scott to investigate the high-profile case, made her announcement.
“The statement is self explanatory,” Graham said.
Civil rights activists from around the nation have held marches and rallies in Sanford and throughout the country in the aftermath of the Feb. 26 shooting in a gated community near Orlando.
The shooting has shined a spotlight “Stand Your Ground” laws like Florida’s – the country’s first – allowing individuals to use deadly force when they feel threatened. And it has rippled throughout the nation with civil rights leaders and others demanding a closer look at racial profiling and possible differences in how prosecutors and law enforcement officials pursue charges against whites and blacks.
Scott has announced he will create a task force to look into Florida’s 2005 “Stand Your Ground” law after Corey’s investigation is complete.