Florida Gov. Rick Scott (R) said in the wake of the George Zimmerman verdict that the system worked as intended, and stressed that a bipartisan commission he promised to convene found that the Stand Your Ground law doesn’t need any extra work.
“This is a tragedy. As a parent and now grandparent, you just can’t imagine losing a child. And so I mourn with Trayvon Martin’s parents. I’ve met them. I introduced them to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and brought in a Special Prosecutor,” Scott told Bloomberg News today.
“So it’s a tragedy. I want to thank the six female jurors. Because it had to be a very emotional decision for them. And you know we have a jury system. And Trayvon Martin’s family said, their representative said they accepted the verdict.”
Speaking to those protesting the verdict, the governor said “I think every one of us feels the heartbreak of Trayvon Martin’s parents, to lose a 17-year-old son.”
“And we all wish we could bring him back…but we have a sacred system that works. …I think we all have to appreciate the six female jurors that put their lives on hold, listened to all the evidence, deliberated and they made a decision.”
On whether the Department of Justice decides it wants to pursue civil-rights charges against Zimmerman, Scott said “the federal government gets to make a decision whether they want to pursue something.”
“They’ll make that on their own. But look, we have a system in our country that works.”
Scott said the bipartisan task force he established after Martin’s death to review the state’s Stand Your Ground law “came back and said, we shouldn’t make any changes.”
Zimmerman did not request a Stand Your Ground hearing to claim self-defense under the law.
“Look this is a tragedy. We lost a, our state lost a 17-year-old. We wish it had not happened. So we’ve done the right things. We went back and looked at that law, but look, you can’t bring this, the young man back, and we all wish we could,” Scott said.