Photo caption: Photos By NAOMI ISHISAKA Left: Johnny Mao, a member of the No New Jim Crow Coalition, mobilizes a captive crowd. Right: Jackie Bannister joins the protest.
On the evening of Saturday, July 13, the controversial six-woman jury in Sanford, Florida found George Zimmerman — accused of murdering 17-year-old Trayvon Martin — “not guilty” of second-degree murder and manslaughter.
The jury believed that Zimmerman justifiably used deadly force in self-defense, which was Zimmeran’s claim, and that he did not “intentionally commit an act or acts that caused death” or demonstrate a “depraved mind without regard for human life,” which are Florida’s definitions of manslaughter and second-degree murder, respectively.
Protests erupted immediately around the country after the final verdict, including in Seattle, New York and Oakland, Calif., where massive riots, vandalism and violence ensued.
In Seattle, organizers began protesting at Westlake Center downtown that evening, and the following evening, an emergency “Hoodies Up for Trayvon” rally gathered hundreds to protest the justice denied.
“It was moving and heartening to see so many people mobilized to take a stand against injustice,” said protester Naomi Ishisaka. “The diversity of the crowd spoke to the kind of solidarity I hope we see more of in the future. From the mood of the crowd, I think this can be a catalyzing moment for change.”