Dominion of New York

The 411

June 27, 2012

New Documents Reveal Why Police Doubted Zimmerman’s Story

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Written by: Kelly Virella

George Zimmerman


emember when we reported that a police investigator wanted to charge George Zimmerman with manslaughter the night he killed Trayvon Martin? Well at the time, we could only speculate about the motivations of that investigator, Christopher Serino. Yesterday, the speculation ended when at least some of Serino’s notes and reports were made public by the judge overseeing the case, Kenneth Lester. The ever industrious Trymaine Lee at Huffington Post Black Voices studied the notes and cited the parts that best explain Serino’s reasoning.

“His actions are inconsistent with those of a person who has stated he was in fear of another subject,” an investigator wrote in an early report on the Feb. 26 shooting. “Investigative findings show that George Michael Zimmerman had at least two opportunities to speak with Trayvon Benjamin Martin in order to defuse the circumstances,” and Zimmerman twice “failed to identify himself as a concerned resident or a neighborhood watch member.”

The report also said that Martin’s and Zimmerman’s respective physical dimensions did not place Zimmerman at a disadvantage worthy of lethal force.

“Investigative findings show the physical injuries displayed by [Zimmerman] are marginally consistent with a life-threatening violent episode described by him, during which neither a deadly weapon nor deadly force was deployed by Trayvon Martin,” the report said.

Also, the documents released yesterday reinforce the theory that Zimmerman thought he was some sort of cop. In a one hour video, he had the following  interaction with an officer. Notice how he tries to relate to her by asking if she’d ever been in his shoes.

“Have you ever had to shoot anybody?” he asked an officer who was assigned to watch him until Serino arrived.

“No,” she said.

“Good for you,” Zimmerman responded. “You’re probably stern enough for them to get the point,” he added, laughing. “You’ve got that authoritative commanding presence.”

My suggestion: if ever interrogated by police, don’t be chatty. It makes you look stupid.

About the Author

Kelly Virella
Kelly Virella lives in an East Harlem walk-up with her husband, her bicycle and her books. She's worked as a journalist for 11 years and started this website during the summer of 2011. She fell in love with New York City during her first visit here as a 16-year-old and finally made good on her promise to move here in April 2010.


Official portrait from his tenure as US Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.