The Norman Transcript

Opinion

July 31, 2013

It’s time to give ground

(Continued)

NORMAN —

“I was the juror that was gonna give them a hung jury,” she said. “I fought to the end.”

I wish she had held out, but I can’t blame her for following the letter of the law, and not quite grasping how much power she really possessed.

She said the reaction to the verdict in the days following the trial overwhelmed her.

“I literally fell on my knees and I broke down, my husband was holding me, and I was screaming and crying, and I kept saying to myself, I feel like I killed him.” She said she has had trouble sleeping and eating. “I feel that I was forcibly included in Trayvon Martin’s death,” she told ABC.

On Friday at a conference of the National Urban League in Philadelphia, Martin’s mother, Sabryna Fulton, urged the audience to work against “stand your ground” legislation, describing it as “a law that has prevented the person who shot and killed my son to be held accountable, and to pay for this awful crime.”

It’s worth remembering that if Zimmerman had shot Martin before Florida passed its “stand your ground” law in 2005, the jury would have been instructed that the shooter “cannot justify his use of force likely to cause death or great bodily harm if by retreating he could have avoided the need to use that force.”

That might have given Maddy all the moral ammunition she needed.

Robin Abcarian is a columnist for the Los Angeles Times.

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