Locally folks are speaking out against the verdict in the George Zimmerman trial. People from around Georgia and Alabama came together in LaGrange to march for justice for Trayvon Martin.
Over 100 people turned out in LaGrange Square Tuesday evening. As they chanted for justice, they became part of a national movement to bring awareness to what they describe as society's shortfalls.
In less than 24 hours Cheston Carlisle and friends organized the mass rally. He says it shows that the outrage over Zimmerman's "not guilty" verdict is wide spread. "People feel like the trial didn't go fairly," he says, "and we felt like we wanted some type of outcome better than we got, and so we'll continue protesting until some justice be done."
Young people made up a majority of the attendees, wearing hoodies and carrying Skittles and iced tea to represent what Trayvon Martin was holding when he died.
Rally organizer Brendarious Henry says, "We don't really do nothing together, it's always violence, so I just wanted to do something positive and bring everybody together."
Rev. CJ Smith was in attendance and adds, "One of the things that's most important now is that we must come together to make the best of this bad situation."
Although people had different reasons to attend the rally, they all agree that the trial has been a reflection of today's society. "It's incidents like this that let us know that the criminal justice system, in some respects, still needs some modification," says Smith.
Carlisle remarks, "It's very sad that someone can take someone's life, it doesn't matter what race it is, and walk away scot-free."
After saying prayers for the Martin family, the group walked about a mile through downtown LaGrange. They say even if the rally doesn't make a splash nationwide, they hope it can have a local impact on the court system there.
Minister Brenda Anderson says, "We're here, not because of race or color, but for justice."
Attorney General Eric Holder is still considering federal civil rights charges against Zimmerman. During a speech at the NAACP convention in Orlando, the attorney general also criticized "stand your ground" laws, which allows the use of deadly force in self-defense.
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