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Students, Faculty and Staff Gather in Support of Trayvon Martin

April 05, 2012

More than 40 law school students, faculty and staff gathered in front of the school to show their support for the family of Trayvon Martin today by posing in hooded sweatshirts.

Martin, 17, was shot to death by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman in Sanford, Fla. on Feb. 26. Martin was unarmed and wearing a hooded sweatshirt. Since the incident much of the public’s focus has been on Florida’s 2005 “Stand Your Ground” law which has precluded Zimmerman’s arrest in the face of his self-defense claim. Others throughout the country have gathered to mourn for Martin and his family.

1L Hillaria Goodgame, who planned the gathering, said, as a law student, she felt compelled to do something. Goodgame commented that when “things reached a tipping point,” she set out on Facebook to organize the gathering, setting up an event page and sending messages to her peers.

Goodgame was gratified by the response. 

Although the event aimed only to show support for Martin’s family, the impact on the student body was palpable with many students remaining in the building lobby after the gathering to further discuss the incident.

"As soon-to-be lawyers, it is our job to advocate on behalf of justice, and justice must function in the same way for everyone, regardless of race," 1L Cortez Patton said.