George Zimmerman will not face federal criminal charges, the Justice Department announced Tuesday, saying there is “insufficient evidence” to charge him in the death of black teenager Trayvon Martin.
The fatal shooting in 2012 launched a national debate about Florida’s controversial “stand your ground” laws that allow an individual to use deadly force in a dangerous situation rather than trying to run away from the situation. Mr. Zimmerman said he acted in self-defense after he was attacked by the 17-year-old Martin.
“Though a comprehensive investigation found that the high standard for a federal hate crime prosecution cannot be met under the circumstances here, this young man’s premature death necessitates that we continue the dialogue and be unafraid of confronting the issues and tensions his passing brought to the surface,” said Attorney General Eric Holder. …
Although the Justice Department has not made any official statements, media reports have said the agency also is unlikely to pursue charges against [Ferguson, MO police officer Darren] Wilson.