At 17 yrs old, Trayvon Martin “Stood His Ground”.

Posted on March 20, 2012 by


Two Sanford citizens, Ilan & Amber, carefully raised this sign to assist in getting a close-up photo.

Sanford, hometown of two times Super Bowl Champion Reggie Branch is a small, quiet, romantic town about 15 miles from downtown Orlando, Florida. With  shopping centers lining its shaded boulevards and lovely Florida-style apartments and homes arranged in scenic view, it is a place with which one could easily fall in love. There is a sense that the residents here take pride in this community as they walk, ride bikes, and enjoy this beautiful, tranquil lifestyle. Until 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, one of its children, made the news.  How could a young boy lose his life to a brutal killer in a pristine neighborhood? The story circulating in news and social media was of an unarmed Black child walking toward his own residence from a convenience store with a bag of Skittles shot and killed by a self-appointed vigilante with a gun who stalked him for confrontation despite being told not to by police and then claimed his actions were in “self-defense”. I went to Sanford, Florida to get an answer.

This sign is on the entrance gate of Retreat at Twin Lake; is there a video recording of Trayvon Martin’s execution?

Upon arrival to Trayvon’s community, it seemed that one could  easily forget that crime even exists; it’s almost sleepy.  But the sight of the makeshift memorial  outside the main gate near the death site snatched my mind back to reality with a weighty blow.  A steady stream of pedestrian and motor traffic of people from all ethnicities and colors cruised by to take photos or simply stare. The faces seemed to wonder what I was wondering : Would this merciless murder propel their ostensibly harmonious city into the national spotlight in a very negative and revealing way?  After paying my respects at the memorial I decided to stand by entrance gate and ask residents for permission to enter. I wanted to avoid the appearance of

This is the 7/11 store where Trayvon made his last purchased; it's one mile from his meeting with murderer, George Zimmerman.

seeming suspicious, hopefully deflecting some of the racial stereotypes apparently prevalent here. The first driver was an African-American woman (she said she was from Memphis, TN) whom I naïvely approached eagerly. Dispensing with the warm greetings I have come to expect from fellow people of color, she bluntly told me without a trace of a smile that she couldn’t give to me authority to enter and that I should seek the right from the resident managers.  Lucky for me another resident, a personable Black gentleman, was entering shortly afterward. Not only did he agree to let me enter but this Brother escorted me to his home.  He was happy to share information and appeared to clearly comprehend the magnitude of what had happened in his community.  He shared some interesting facts with me. I learned that George Zimmerman had no permission from any residents to patrol the neighborhood, defiantly  armed himself against the wishes of the community and that he was acting as a volunteer, that is, without pay. My host stated that Zimmerman had in the past encouraged him and his wife to apply for gun permits. Zimmerman and his own wife both possessed legal gun permits, and were actively and avidly “sensitizing” the community for some time perpetuating stereotypes and fomenting fear about African-American young men saying that these boys were shiftless, troublemakers, and shouldn’t be allow in the community. On several occasions when this gentleman went to investigate a barking dog, he would unexpectedly see Zimmerman and his dog inexplicably standing in his drive-way. 

This makeshift memorial is evidence that Trayvon’s senseless killing has touched our hearts as we search for answers.

This is a gated community and all vehicles must enter by the main gate. But at the far end of community, at the access to Twin Trees Lane, there is no barrier to anyone just walking in. This is believed to be the entrance that Trayvon used that fateful night. My host stated that two shots were fired during this “incident” and that in his opinion the second shot was to “finish off” Trayvon as a potential witness to Zimmerman’s depravity. Zimmerman is known to be a savvy, well-connected middle class white man who is familiar with the legal processes with regards to guns and use of deadly force. In his “sensitizing” efforts, he used mail-outs urging “armed self-defense”.  

With minimal examination of the facts, it is obvious that Zimmerman’s self-defense argument is totally inapplicable to his position but definitely applicable to

This is the area where Zimmerman finally intercepted 17 yrs old Trayvon Martin and then, killed him in cold blood.

Trayvon Martin’s.  Florida’s “stand your ground” defense avers that any law-abiding citizen has a right to decline to retreat from and use any means necessary to deter harm intended toward himself or another person. Trayvon would have had the right to “stand his ground” as he was the pursued and Zimmerman the aggressor. Zimmerman, knowing the law as a gun owner, used this cowardly defense ploy as a tool to snuff out the life of an innocent child.  

It is now known that Trayvon’s friend was on phone talking to him as Zimmerman stalked and killed him.  In addition, the nation is coming together against the inanity of Zimmerman’s defense argument as evidence is mounting and pointing to a different story than the one told by (lone survivor) Zimmerman.   Florida has convened a grand jury seeking indictment on homicide charges and the U.S. Justice Department has launched its own investigation into probable civil rights violations.


Two Sanford citizens, Ilan & Amber, carefully raised this sign to assist in getting a close-up photo.



It's believed that Trayvon entered into his community through this open area located at complex's end on Twin Trees Lane.