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Evidence in Trayvon Martin death released in case against George Zimmerman

1:07 PM, Jul 12, 2012   |    comments
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SANFORD, Florida (AP/WKMG) -- Prosecutors released more documents in the case of the neighborhood watch leader charged with fatally shooting Trayvon Martin.

The documents being released Thursday include reports from the FBI and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

The FBI is conducting a probe into whether there were civil rights violations in the handling of Martin's death investigation, and the FDLE assisted the criminal investigation.

Photo Gallery: Crime scene photos, released July 12 2012
READ: Documents released in George Zimmerman case, 7/12/12 (PDF)

In the newly-released documents, the lead Sanford police investigator said George Zimmerman profiled the unarmed teen because he was wearing a hooded sweatshirt, not because he was black.

In the documents, Sanford police Investigator Christopher Serino said he believes Zimmerman followed Martin because of the teen's attire, not his skin color. 

Serino told the FBI that gangs in Sanford, referred to in the community as "goons," typically dressed in black and wore hoodies.  Serino described Zimmerman as overzealous and having a "little hero complex," but not a racist.

Sanford police officers gave conflicting accounts about Zimmerman's injuries in the minutes after he fatally shot Martin, who was 17 years old.

Documents show that some officers thought Zimmerman's nose was broken, but others didn't. The officers agreed that Zimmerman, 28, had cuts on the back of his head.

The degree of Zimmerman's injuries could be important in his claim of self-defense. Zimmerman is charged with second-degree murder in the shooting.

The documents also provide an account of Martin's activities with his cousin the day before the shooting and show crime scene photos.

Zimmerman, the former neighborhood watch leader, is charged with second-degree murder in Martin's death. Zimmerman and Martin got into a fight last February in a gated community in Sanford, Florida, a suburb of Orlando.

The lack of an arrest for 44 days led to protests nationwide and the departure of Sanford's police chief.

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