Trayvon's Mom: 'I Never Do Anything on the 26th'

Teen's death is remembered 10 years later
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 27, 2022 5:53 AM CST
10 Years Later, Trayvon's Mom Remembers Her Son
Sybrina Fulton, the mother of Trayvon Martin, attends the commemoration of the 10th anniversary of his death at National Action Network's rally in Harlem Saturday.   (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

The mother of Trayvon Martin used the 10th anniversary of her son's death Saturday to urge those who sought justice for her family to continue to fight, per the AP. “I never do anything on the 26th, I never even plan anything on the 26th of February,” Sybrina Fulton said at the weekly meeting of the National Action Network, the civil rights organization founded by the Rev. Al Sharpton in Harlem. She told an audience that included Sharpton and Mayor Eric Adams that she wanted to be there to support her supporters. Adams, a New York state senator at the time, was among several Black lawmakers who wore hooded sweatshirts to a 2012 legislative session to call attention to the 17-year-old's death in Sanford, Florida.

Trayvon Martin had been wearing a similar sweatshirt when he was fatally shot on his way back from a store while visiting his father in a gated community in the Orlando suburb. George Zimmerman, a member of the community’s neighborhood watch, confronted the teenager and shot him after reporting him to authorities as a suspicious person. Zimmerman, who told authorities that Martin had attacked him, was acquitted of second-degree murder in 2013. The shooting refocused attention on race and justice in the United States. Another consequence: "Stand your ground" laws have since proliferated around the nation, as the AP explains in a separate story.

When the 17-year-old was fatally shot, Florida was still one of the few states with the law that removes the duty to retreat before using deadly force in the face of danger. Now, upward of 30 states have some form of the law and recent research indicates they are associated with more deaths—as many as 700 additional firearm killings each year, according to a study published this week in the journal JAMA Network Open. The study found that stand your ground laws in those states could be associated with a national increase of up to 11% in homicide rates per month between 1999 and 2017. The largest increases, between 16% and 33%, were in Southern states including Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Louisiana, the study found.

(Read more Trayvon Martin stories.)

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