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Teen’s death was murder, Rep. Frederica Wilson claims


This news story was published on April 3, 2012.
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By Michael Vasquez, McClatchy Newspapers –

MIAMI — Trayvon Martin’s death is “definitely” a case of murder, Miami Congresswoman Frederica Wilson told The Miami Herald during a sit-down video interview Tuesday.

Wilson appeared on an online video program hosted by Miami Herald World Editor John Yearwood. In her appearance, Wilson described racial profiling as a pervasive force in this country, and said she fears for the safety of her black son and three black grandsons.

Of the Martin case, Wilson said, “Oh, definitely Mr. Zimmerman murdered Trayvon Martin … you can tell from the 911 tapes, and from the girlfriend’s conversation. You can tell from Mr. Zimmerman’s past.”

“He murdered Trayvon,” Wilson repeated. “He hunted him down like you hunt a rabbit.”

Wilson credited Congress with helping to prod the U.S. Justice Department to get involved in the shooting case — a case that has prompted protests across the United States and beyond. Before her election to Congress, Wilson founded Miami’s 5000 Role Models of Excellence program, which for years has mentored at-risk minority boys.

Wilson said more programs like hers are needed across the country.

“So you can teach them how to react if they’re followed, if someone is threatening them, or especially how to deal with police,” Wilson said. “There’s a tension between black boys and the police. It’s not a perceived tension, it’s for real.”

“So many people fear black boys, and they despise them,” Wilson continued. “And they don’t know anything about them, but that’s just the way it is. So we have to give our boys tools on how to survive in this country.”

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