Now that he is acquitted, George Zimmerman can reclaim the gun he admits he used to shoot and kill Trayvon Martin last February. However, it is not yet clear if he will or not.
Shortly after Zimmerman was found not guilty, Judge Debra Nelson announced that the evidence from the trial would be released. That means that the 29-year-old former neighborhood watch captain, who legally owned the gun, can reclaim it.
The weapon was a key piece of evidence for both sides of the trial. Prosecutors argued that the location of Zimmerman’s gun was a key indicator of what happened. They also stated in closing arguments that Zimmerman’s description of where he kept it would have made it impossible for Martin to reach it.
Zimmerman claimed self defense for the shooting of Trayvon Martin, 17, in multiple interviews. The 29-year-old asserted that Martin reached for his gun and verbally threatened him. After weighing the evidence for 16 hours, a jury of six women sided with Zimmerman.
MSNBC reports that University of Florida Law Professor Darren Hutchinson explained, “Florida law prohibits persons convicted of felonies in a state court from possessing a handgun.” But George Zimmerman wasn’t convicted, and therefore is not a felon.
Hutchinson added that it is still possible for Zimmerman to lose his right to own a gun, if federal prosecutors charge him with a crime and win in court. But it isn’t clear if that will happen, as federal prosecutors have not charged Zimmerman with a crime.
While news that George Zimmerman’s gun could be returned, Special Prosecutor Angela Corey also noted after the acquittal that the case was “never been about the right to bear arms.” She added, “This case has never been about race, nor has it ever been about the right to bear arms, not in the sense of proving this as a criminal case.”
Do you think George Zimmerman’s gun should be returned to him, now that a court has found him not guilty?