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Trayvon Martin Case: Teen's Mother, Sybrina Fulton, Clarifies 'Accident' Remark On Nancy Grace

The Huffington Post  |  By Posted: 04/12/2012 6:35 pm Updated: 04/13/2012 6:14 pm

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Trayvon Martin's mother, Sybrina Fulton, caused a stir after she appeared on the "Today" show and said that she believed it was "an accident" that George Zimmerman shot and killed her son.

During an interview with HLN's Nancy Grace, Fulton clarified her comment, saying she was referring to the teen's encounter with Zimmerman and not the shooting itself.

"In no way, shape, form or fashion did I imply that this was an accident, that the shooting was an accident," she told Grace. "I don't believe that it was an accident. I believe he got out of his vehicle, he had an intent in his mind, and he carried out the intent, and that's why my son is no longer with us."

Fulton expounded on comments she'd made in an interview with the "Today" show's Ann Curry Thursday morning, comments she says were taken out of context.

"One of the things that I still believe is that a person should apologize when they are remorseful for what they've done," she told Curry. "I believe it was an accident. It just got out of control. He couldn't turn the clock back."

When asked about Fulton's comment in a press conference, Zimmerman's attorney Mark O'Mara said the defense wouldn't be going after Fulton for her comments, according to MSNBC.

"They went through a horrible tragedy…we’re not going to be talking about using words against the mother of a deceased child," he said.

Trayvon Martin, a 17-year-old from Miami Gardens, Fla., was visiting his father in Sanford, Fla., a suburb near Orlando. On Feb. 26. he was returning from a trip to a convenience store to the home of his father's girlfriend, when George Zimmerman, a resident of the gated community in which Martin's father lived, reported to a 911 dispatcher that the teenager looked suspicious. At some point during their encounter, Zimmerman shot and killed Martin, but said he did so in self-defense after the teenager attacked him. Martin was unarmed and carrying only $22, a bag of Skittles, an iced tea and his cellphone.

Police in Sanford initially declined to arrest of bring charges against Zimmerman. But after 44 days and intense international scrutiny around the incident, special prosecutor Angela Corey charged Zimmerman on Wednesday with second-degree murder. Zimmerman was expected to plead not guilty. He faces up to life in prison if convicted.

"Even if that means he may actually be found not guilty, we just want him to be held accountable for what he's done. And by him not being arrested, that would not have been done. So we are happy that he was arrested so that the can give his side of the story."

Ann Curry asked Tracy Martin, the slain teenager's father, what he would say to people who felt that Zimmerman's arrest had more to do with public pressure than with the legal merits of the case.

"First and foremost, I think had the Sanford Police Department done a thorough and impartial investigation from the beginning, George Zimmerman would have been locked up from day one, and there wouldn't have been such a huge public outcry for the arrest," Tracy Martin responded.

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Clarification: A previous version of this post stated that Zimmerman shot Martin "after an altercation." The nature and sequence of events leading up to the shooting are disputed, and this post has been edited to reflect this uncertainty.
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