The Miami Herald reports: Despite public claims that there wasn’t enough probable cause to make a criminal case in the Trayvon Martin killing, early in the investigation the Sanford Police Department requested an arrest warrant from the Seminole County State Attorney’s office, the special prosecutor in the case said.
A Sanford Police incident report shows the case was categorized as “homicide/negligent manslaughter.” The state attorney’s office held off pending further review.
Asked to confirm that the police recommended a manslaughter charge, special prosecutor Angela Corey said: “I don’t know about that, but as far as the process I can tell you that the police went to the state attorney with a capias request, meaning: ‘We’re through with our investigation and here it is for you.’ The state attorney impaneled a grand jury, but before anything else could be done, the governor stepped in and asked us to pick it up in mid-stream.”
A capias is a request for charges to be filed.
The Seminole County State Attorney’s Office declined to comment on whether its prosecutors ever recommended against filing charges.
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As to what it is about, consider a passage in Michelle Alexander’s book, The New Jim Crow, in which she argues that “what it means to be a criminal in our collective consciousness has become conflated with what it means to be black, so the term white criminal is confounding, while the term black criminal is nearly redundant.”Mr. Pitts' gripping article can be read in its entirety here.
This, then, is what killed Trayvon Martin, the fact that we are so stubbornly convinced of that redundancy that a boy walking home carrying nothing more threatening than Skittles and iced tea can become a source of terror sufficient for a George Zimmerman to stalk him and to kill him.
It doesn’t matter if he wore a hoodie. It doesn’t matter if he punched Zimmerman.
It doesn’t matter why he was suspended from school.
What matters is that he is unavailable for comment about those things, and always will be. What matters is that none of them changes the essential truth of what this is about.
Though innocent of any crime, Trayvon Martin was gunned down by George Zimmerman. He was sacrificed for all our fears.