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Judge dismisses lawsuit filed by George Zimmerman against family of Trayvon Martin

George Zimmerman Trayvon Martin
Posted at 8:59 AM, Feb 15, 2022

A Florida judge has dismissed a defamation and conspiracy lawsuit filed by George Zimmerman against the parents of Trayvon Martin — the teenager he fatally shot in 2012.

Axios and The Associated Press report that Tallahassee judge John Cooper dismissed the lawsuit Monday, saying that Zimmerman had failed to show "any fraudulent representation" in his suit.

"There can be no claim for conspiracy to defraud if there is no adequately stated claim for fraud," the order read, according to the AP.

Zimmerman fatally shot Trayvon Martin in February 2012 in Sanford, Florida, a suburb of Orlando. Zimmerman was patrolling his housing development as part of a neighborhood watch program when he spotted Martin, who was walking home in a hooded sweatshirt after buying snacks at a local convenience store.

Zimmerman was acquitted of charges connected to the fatal shooting in 2013. He said he shot Martin in self-defense under Florida's "Stand Your Ground" law. Prosecutors claimed Zimmerman racially profiled Martin and noted that he had continued to pursue the boy against the advice of an emergency dispatcher.

Zimmerman's lawsuit had claimed that a key witness in his 2013 trial, Rachel Jeantel, falsified her claims so she could testify instead of her half-sister, Brittany Diamond Eugene.

Zimmerman also claimed a book written by Martin's parents, Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, falsely painted him as a racist. Martin was Black, Zimmerman has both white and Hispanic heritage.

Cooper's ruling noted that Zimmerman's lawsuit did not provide enough proof of his claims to move forward.

The lawsuit also named Jeantel, Eugene, publisher HarperCollins and family attorney Ben Crump as defendants.