Charlestonians weigh in on Zimmerman verdict

By Ava

CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) A Florida jury found George Zimmerman not guilty of second-degree murder on Saturday in the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.

In downtown Charleston, the verdict caught some people off guard.

"It's still a surprise that he got off," said Malik Moore. {}

"I was very upset, very upset. I just didn't agree with the verdict and how it came out," said Delores Phelps. {}

Some people following the trial felt the whole situation could have been avoided.

"They asked (Zimmerman) if he was still following (Martin) and he said, 'Yes.' And they said, 'No, no we don't need you to do that.' He kept doing it -- that helped contribute to the end result, so," said Kerry Cromer.

The Florida jury found Zimmerman not guilty on all charges even manslaughter, a lesser charge.

"He should have gone away. No matter if the little kid was a white kid or a black kid, he's still a kid. He shouldn't have died," Moore said. {}

People in downtown Charleston didn't forget Martin's parents when voicing their opinions.

"I feel for his mother and father, but you know, I accept our justice system for what it is and for what a great country we have," said Richard Robinson. {}

The returned verdict is still such a touchy subject many people opted not to comment at all.

Pastor Thomas Dixon with The Coalition: People United to Take Back Our Community said people who are upset with the returned verdict do have a voice.

"Comments and tweets - it's not the same as people saying, 'Okay, there is a march or a rally going on, let me go out and peacefully join and demonstrate my civil unrest,'" said Dixon.