SWFL Reacts to Zimmerman verdict
Photo: Video by fox4now.com
CREATED Jul. 14, 2013
FORT MYERS, Fla. - Just hours south of the Sanford, FL courthouse where jurors found George Zimmerman not guilty of second-degree murder charges, the verdict is impacting Southwest Florida.
"It's a sad day for African Americans across this country," said James Muwakkil, President of the Lee County NAACP, "we don't like the jury's decision but we are law abiding citizens and we will respect it."
Many feared of violent protest in Lee County, but the local NAACP President says the community is reflecting, not acting out.
"There's nobody in Lee County acting that strongly," said Muwakkil, "especially in the African American community. It's ridiculous to even think so."
Fox 4 in Your Corner's Julian Glover spoke with attorney and former prosecutor Cedric Hall to breakdown the bombshell verdict.
"It's not a ruling, it's the will of the people," said Hall, "the six people on the jury did not say he was innocent, they just said that he was not guilty beyond a reasonable doubt."
As the community begins to dissect the jury's decision and live with the outcome, Hall says there's a pivotal issue in the case that cannot be denied.
"Don't be fooled by people telling you that race is not an issue, it's always an issue in a case," said Hall.
In the coming days and months, Hall believes peaceful talks, not protests, will be the outcome.
"I see a lot of dialogue, and that's a good thing," said Hall.