'Justice for Trayvon' rallies draw Arizona crowds - New York News

'Justice for Trayvon' rallies draw Arizona crowds

Updated:
PHOENIX -

"Justice for Trayvon" rallies drew thousands across the US, including a crowd outside the federal building in downtown Phoenix.

There were rallies in more than 100 cities nationwide to remember Trayvon Martin and to press for federal civil rights charges against the man who shot him.

In Phoenix, many were braving the hot temperatures to show support.

People could be seen holding signs that read "I am Trayvon" and "Our lives matter"; some had skittles in their pockets.

At least 100 people braved triple-digit temperatures Saturday afternoon to rally outside the federal courthouse in downtown Phoenix.

"What brings me is justice for all men and boys of color," said Vanessa Gamble.

"I wanted to make an appearance for Trayvon. He's unable to speak for himself. I also feel bad for his parents. I had to come out and do something," said Burt Lyde. "I have two sons and this could be one of my sons."

"Fighting for justice and peace and rights," said Marva Vinson.

People rallied in more than 100 cities around the country Saturday to push for federal civil rights charges against George Zimmerman.

Zimmerman was acquitted last week in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

"I was pretty upset when the verdict was read. It kind of renewed my feelings of a unspoken institutional racism in our system," said Diana Brown, a teacher.

Annette Shrager admitted to asking herself why she was going to the rally.

"It's not about the hoodie or the skittles or the physical appearance of Trayvon or Zimmerman, to me it was about someone on one day decided to solve a problem using a tool of violence and we need to establish in the environment it's not okay," said Shrager.

The crowd outside the Phoenix federal courthouse Saturday was diverse.

Black, white, young and old, civil rights activists and religious leaders: all standing in unity supporting a teen they never knew.

"We need to get off the couch and go state our feelings and that's why we're here," said Brown.

The Justice Department is reportedly investigating if Zimmerman violated Martin's civil rights when he shot the 17-year-old in February 2012.

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