Local NAACP president: Federal inquiry is 'just thing to do' - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Local NAACP president: Federal inquiry is 'just thing to do'

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Local NAACP chapter President Dr. Michael Blackwell said Martin had a right to live.  "His civil rights were violated because he was walking to the store and going back home," Blackwell said. Local NAACP chapter President Dr. Michael Blackwell said Martin had a right to live. "His civil rights were violated because he was walking to the store and going back home," Blackwell said.
WATERLOO (KWWL) -

The NAACP has petitioned the Justice Department to file criminal charges against George Zimmerman, the Florida neighborhood watch leader who shot and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.

A jury found Zimmerman not guilty of second-degree murder and manslaughter on Saturday night.

Local NAACP chapter President Dr. Michael Blackwell said Martin had a right to live.

"His civil rights were violated because he was walking to the store and going back home," Blackwell said.

Blackwell said a federal inquiry is the "just thing to do."

The charges would fall under the 2009 Matthew Shephard and James Byrd Junior Hate Crimes Prevention Act.  Federal investigators would have to show that race was a factor in Zimmerman's decision-making.

"There seems to be plenty of evidence that suggests race may have been a factor,"  Blackwell said.

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