I’m not interested in playing detective and constructing a detailed picture of what really happened a month ago when George Zimmerman confronted and killed Trayvon Martin. There’s no way to know for sure, so I won’t bother.
But given the nation’s interest in the event, the accounts of friends, family and eyewitnesses play key roles in the perception of the tragedy. And after seeing the interview Zimmerman’s father Robert did with Orlando’s Fox 35, I can say this: this guy is full of it. I don’t believe a word he says.
The falsehoods started long before yesterday. In his letter to the Sanford community, Robert Zimmemran stated “At no time did George follow or confront Mr. Martin . .” But the released police tapes directly contradicted the assertion.
“Are you following him?” the dispatcher asked.
[George] Zimmerman replied: “Yep.”
“Okay, we don’t need you to do that,” the dispatcher warned.
In the interview, Robert offered a more detailed and ludicrous account of the tragedy.
[1:50] “He lost sight of the individual, he continued to walk down the same sidewalk to the next street, so he could get an address for the police. He went to the next street, realized where he was and was walking back to his vehicle. It’s my understanding, at that point, Trayvon Martin walked up to him, asked him, ‘Do you have a fucking problem?’ George said, ‘No, I don’t have a problem,’ and started to reach for his cell phone.”
So this is Robert’s account: George lost sight of the kid, decided to merely get a street address, did so, and then turned to leave. It was then that Trayvon emerged from the shadows to confront George. This re-tells Robert’s earlier assertion, that George never pursued Trayvon.
It’s a lie. On the police tapes, you hear George’s exasperation at maybe losing sight of Trayvon:
After discussing his location with the dispatcher, Zimmerman exclaimed, “Shit, he’s running,” and the following sounds suggest he left his vehicle to run after Martin.
“Are you following him?” the dispatcher asked. Zimmerman replied: “Yep.”
It makes you think the father isn’t even interested in the truth. It sounds as if Robert hasn’t heard the 911 tapes and doesn’t care. If so, that’s absurd — no one is going to buy his account over what they can hear for themselves. Now, the confrontation:
“At that point, he was punched in the nose, his nose was broken and he was knocked to the concrete. Trayvon Martin got on top of him and just started beating him. In the face. In his nose, hitting his head on the concrete.”
This would be a violent, unprovoked attack. And a broken nose is a nasty, painful, often bloody injury. But here George is in the police station, just an hour or so later:
Where’s the blood? Where are the telltale signs of a broken nose, the black eyes? Where are the bruises and scrapes to the back of George’s head? They aren’t there. The video completely contradicts Robert’s version of the confrontation.
Last, and this is the worst:
“After nearly a minute of being beaten, George was trying to get his head off the concrete, trying to move with Trayvon on him, in the grass. In doing so, his firearm was shown. Trayvon Martin said something to the effect of, ‘You’re going to die now,’ or ‘You’re going to die tonight’ or something to that effect . .”
That is pathetic. No young man in a blind violent rage sees a gun on the guy he’s furiously beating and does nothing about it. Except in Robert’s B-movie world. There, the teen is inspired by seeing George’s 9mm to say ‘You’re going to die now.’ Followed, we assume, by ‘Wait, are you pulling your gun out?’ And ‘Holy smokes, you’re shooting me to death.’ Only a fool would buy this crap.
Shockingly, Robert’s professional background is in the law. Of all things, he’s a judge. He’s apparently hoping he can foist preposterous hearsay upon us and save his boy. If so, he must have been a real sucker behind the bench. Robert is by far the least credible person who’s offered an account of that terrible night.