Trayvon Martin’s dad: ‘I’m still in disbelief’ over verdict

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Trayvon Martin’s parents, brother and their attorney joined The Today Show five days after the acquittal their son’s killer George Zimmerman.

Zimmerman was on trial for the second-degree murder of Trayvon Martin. He argued self-defense, and an all-female Florida jury acquitted him of all charges last Saturday night.

The trial and verdict have led to “an on-going protest in cities around the country and new debates about race and guns in this country,” NBC’s Matt Lauer said.

Trayvon Martin’s parents, Tracy Martin and Sabrina Fulton, his brother, Jahvaris Fulton, and their attorney Ben Crump joined Lauer earlier today to discuss the Zimmerman verdict, protests and where they are going from here.

“I’m still shocked,” Tracy Martin said about the Zimmerman verdict. “I’m still in disbelief. We felt in our hearts that we were going to get a conviction. We thought that the killer of our unarmed child was going to be convicted of the crime that he committed.”

“I don’t understand if they were looking at it from Trayvon’s point of view because he was a teenager,” Sabrina Fulton said about the jurors. “He was scared.”

In response to juror B-37 saying she did not feel race played a role in the trial, Trayvon’s father responded:

Obviously anytime you have a person who makes an assumption that a person is up to no good, there’s some type of profiling going on there. Was he racially profiled? I think that if Trayvon had been white this wouldn’t have never happened. So, obviously race is playing some type of role.

Witnesses during the trial testified that they heard George Zimmerman’s voice, and others said they believed it to be Trayvon’s voice calling for help on the much disputed 911 call from the night of Trayvon’s death.

“We know in our hearts that that was our child screaming for help,” Martin said.

In response to the nation-wide protests, some that have turned violent, Fulton told Today:

We have always maintained to do things decent and in order, and we think the protests should be peaceful protests. We’re not saying for them not to protest because they have a right to protest; they have a right to be heard. We just want to make sure that it is peaceful, that nobody gets hurt, that nobody gets arrested, that you don’t damage your own property.

“We would like for the federal government to look into it and weigh all of the options,” Martin said.  “As parents we just feel that there could’ve been something more done.”

One mission of the Trayvon Martin Foundation, co-founded by Martin and Fulton, is to “advocate for senseless violence,” Martin said.

“Trying to make sure that even though we can’t, nothing we can say or do to get Trayvon back, maybe we can help someone else not lose their child.”

Follow Carrie Healey on Twitter @CarrieHeals