SANFORD, Fla. - Minutes after George Zimmerman was found not guilty of second-degree murder in the death of Trayvon Martin, police surrounded the community where the unarmed teen was shot and killed.
WKMG-TV reports police surrounded the Retreat at Twin Lakes, a gated community in Sanford, as a precaution following the verdict, which was delivered late Saturday after the jury deliberated for nearly 15 hours.
Zimmerman, 29, blinked and barely smiled as the verdict was read. Zimmerman's wife, Shellie Zimmerman, had tears in her eyes after the six-member, all-woman jury delivered its verdict.
Tracy Martin, the father of Trayvon Martin, tweeted, "Thanks to everyone who are with us and who will be with us (so) we together can make sure that this doesn't happen again."
He later tweeted, "Even though I am broken hearted my faith is unshattered I WILL ALWAYS LOVE MY BABY TRAY."
Supporters of Martin's family who had gathered outside the courthouse yelled out, "No! No!"
Entertainer Steve Harvey tweeted, "A Child is Dead & The Man that Killed Him is Free & Again The Child is Black...My Country Tis of Thee?"
The jury had been given the chance to convict Zimmerman of manslaughter but did not do so, despite asking for a clarification of the charge earlier in the evening.
After hearing the verdict, Judge Debra Nelson told Zimmerman he was free to go.
Jurors heard two different portraits of Zimmerman and had to decide whether he was a wannabe cop who took the law into his own hands or a well-meaning neighborhood watch volunteer who shot the unarmed teenager in self-defense because he feared for his life.
The NAACP tweeted after the verdict, saying, "Zimmerman acquitted on all charges. We will update you as we work to pursue civil rights charges against Zimmerman through the DOJ."
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