Successful Legal Action Against Zimmerman Judged Unlikely After Acquittal


Successful legal action against George Zimmerman for shooting Trayvon Martin seems unlikely, the Wall Street Journal says. The U.S. Justice Department could file a civil rights charge, but it likely would have to show Zimmerman was motivated by racial hatred when he shot Martin, said Paul Callan, an attorney at Callan, Koster, Brady & Brennan LLP in New York. “I think you could make out the case that unconscious racism” was at work, said Kenneth Nunn of the Criminal Justice Center at the University of Florida’s Levin College of Law. “But there doesn’t seem to be enough there to justify a claim that racial animus was the predicate behind Trayvon Martin’s death.” Attorneys for Martin’s family are considering filing a civil lawsuit against Zimmerman. Such a case would face high hurdles. Zimmerman can seek immunity from civil lawsuits under Florida’s Stand Your Ground law–something his attorney said he planned to do. “In effect, there will be no civil suits,” said Tamara Lave, a University of Miami law professor. “If there is a civil suit filed, it will be dismissed, and future ones will be barred.”

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