Philadelphia Reacts To Zimmerman Ruling - FOX 35 News Orlando

Philadelphia Reacts To Zimmerman Ruling

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PHILADELPHIA -

The fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin sparked nationwide protests.

One of the most memorable, the "Million Hoodie March" last year where people took to the streets all over the country, including here in Philadelphia. Protesters wore hooded sweatshirts just like the one Trayvon Martin had on the night he was shot.

And tonight, more protesters coming together, upset over the "not guilty" verdict.

FOX 29'S Omari Fleming is with them tonight as the George Zimmerman verdict sparks rallies and online radio outrage.

Radio host Jason Moody organized Philadelphia's hoodie march last year after Zimmerman said he shot and killed Trayvon Martin in self-defense

Moody questions the not guilty verdict reached under Florida's stand-your-ground law.

"If stand your ground is you take a gun and kill someone, is you not fighting back stand your ground?" questions Moody.

From the moments after the verdict last night throughout today, rallies claiming injustice have been held at Philadelphia's municipal building and Love Park.

"There was no justice at all," says one protestor.

One woman wonders how the 17-year old teen could get a fair trial with six female jurors, only one a minority.

"Where was the jury of his peers? Why didn't they balance it so the ideology could be challenged by a different perspective?" says Mee Lin Youk.

"In our legal system, if you don't prove beyond a reasonable doubt that he's guilty, the jury has to acquit and I think that's what happened," reflects Vignesh Krishnan, a student.

While the Florida jury made its decision, deliberations on the Zimmerman verdict continue in the court of public opinion.

"We thought there was not enough evidence to prove him guilty. And you're innocent until proven guilty, not other way around," says Kevin Marfiak, who's happy with the verdict.

"He followed that little boy who had no weapons on him, just some tea and skittles," says Arnetta Eleby, who's upset with the verdict.

Philadelphia mayor, Michael Nutter, who last year called Martin's death an assassination, released a strong statement about the verdict, saying:

"We are a country governed by the rule of law, and while I respect the criminal justice system... I am deeply saddened by and strongly disagree with the verdict of "not guilty" in this case. A young black man is dead without a real explanation. George Zimmerman took an innocent life."

Nutter concludes, "The question now for all Americans is what are we to do in the wake of this tragic loss of life? I believe everyone should be calm and reflective. Every day in America, African American males die on our streets in outrageously alarming numbers. Whether they die at the hands of a vigilante or another African American male, we must all commit ourselves to eliminating the conditions in our community that cause too many people to see young African American males as ‘threats' instead of seeing the promise within each child."

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