George Zimmerman's brother apologizes for offensive tweets

Thursday, March 28, 2013 - 9:00am

Robert Zimmerman Jr., the brother of the man who shot and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, apologized for his controversial and offensive tweets.

In one, Zimmerman juxtaposed a photograph of Martin with one of 17-year-old De'Marquise Elkins, one of two teenagers charged with killing a baby in Georgia.

Both Elkins and Martin appear to be flipping off the camera.

"A picture speaks a thousand words. Any questions?" the tweet reads.

In another tweet, Zimmerman writes: "Lib media shld ask if what these2 black teens did 2 a woman&baby is the reason ppl think blacks mightB risky."

Speaking on CNN's Piers Morgan Live on Wednesday night, he apologized for the messages, saying they weren't the "right thing to do."

"I realize those were controversial and offensive and I did publicly apologize for them," he said. "I'm a human being. I'm being upfront about what I did. I made a mistake ... Unfortunately (it) may not have helped George."

His brother, George Zimmerman, has been charged with second-degree murder. He says he shot Martin in self-defense after he saw the young man acting suspiciously in his neighborhood in Sanford, Florida.

His brother said he was trying to make a larger point in his tweets about the "media and their honesty in portraying the person who encountered my brother February 26 (2012).

"We've been led to believe that it's a junior-high-school-aged person because of the pictures," he said, referring to Martin.

"The analogy is these are two people who chose to represent themselves in this way. One was accused of killing a baby, and whatever's in his social media makes the rounds immediately ... However, the other person who almost killed my brother had he disarmed him -- my brother had every indication to believe he would have killed him -- his social media is off limits."

Zimmerman's tweets prompted a quick response from his brother's defense team.

"The Zimmerman case has started a conversation about race in America," attorney Mark O'Mara said in a statement.

"We must talk about race in a way that brings us together, not in a way that drives us apart. Robert Zimmerman Jr.'s recent comments about race only drive us apart. Robert does not speak for the defense and he does not speak for George."
 

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