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Jul 9, 2013 No Comments ›› Chuck Biscuits

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Black roots: This photo shown on CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight is said to show George Zimmerman’s great-grandfather. Above is Zimmerman’s grandmother, and his mother is in the man’s arms

Excerpted from The Daily Mail, May 11, 2012: A photograph of a well-dressed black man holding a baby is reportedly of George Zimmerman’s great-grandfather – and could become a crucial piece of evidence in his murder trial.

CNN aired the picture last night and if its authenticity can be verified then it supports what the accused murderer’s family have been saying since the shooting took place – that Zimmerman is from a mixed-race family and did not kill Trayvon Martin because he was black.

The 28-year-old’s family and legal team have repeatedly asserted that he killed the unarmed 17-year-old on February 26 out of self defense rather than because of his race.

Zimmerman’s family members have insisted for months that he is no racist.

Last month, an investigation by Reuters portrayed George Zimmerman as a trusted aid to most of his black neighbors in the gated community of Sanford, Florida that was plagued by a string of burglaries in the weeks leading up to the shooting of Trayvon Martin.

The 28-year-old insurance-fraud investigator comes from a deeply Catholic background and was raised in a racially integrated household.

Zimmerman’s family members have insisted for months that he is no racist.

Orlando attorney Mark NeJame appeared on CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight on Thursday with the photo and said it originated from someone in the family.

It shows a middle-aged black man in a shirt and tie with a baby on his lap and young woman standing behind him.

The baby is thought to be Zimmerman’s mother, and the young woman his grandmother

The man is Zimmerman’s great-grandfather, NeJame told the network, the baby is Zimmerman’s mother and the young woman is his grandmother. Keep reading

Excerpted from The Orlando Sentinel, May 11, 2012 : A photo aired by CNN shows a black-skinned man that Orlando attorney Mark NeJame says was George Zimmerman’s great-grandfather.

It appears to support what Zimmerman’s family has been saying for months: that Zimmerman has black-skinned relatives and was raised in a mixed race family.

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His views on race are important because Zimmerman, 28, of Sanford, is awaiting trial in Sanford on a second-degree murder charge. He shot and killed Trayvon Martin, an unarmed black 17-year-old, Feb. 26 as the teen walked through a gated community.

Trayvon’s father, family lawyers and critics say Zimmerman is guilty of racial profiling and murder.

But Zimmerman told police he acted in self-defense, pulling the trigger of his 9mm handgun only after Trayvon confronted him, knocked him to the ground and began hammering his head onto a sidewalk.

National civil rights leaders traveled to Sanford in March, demanding Zimmerman’s arrest. They included Al Sharpton, the Rev. Jesse Jackson and the national president of the NAACP.

Zimmerman’s family members, though, have insisted for months that he is no racist.

NeJame appeared on CNN Thursday with an old photo. He told the 24-hour news channel that the photo originated from a member of Zimmerman’s family and was provided him by a friend.

The Orlando Sentinel could not independently verify its authenticity.

It shows a middle-aged black man in a shirt and tie with a baby on his lap and young woman standing behind him.

The man is Zimmerman’s great-grandfather, NeJame told the network; the baby is Zimmerman’s mother; and the young woman is his grandmother.

Excerpted from National Review Online, April 25, 2012: A Reuters investigation has plenty of interesting details about Zimmerman and the events leading up to the shooting:

The 28-year-old insurance-fraud investigator comes from a deeply Catholic background and was taught in his early years to do right by those less fortunate. He was raised in a racially integrated household and himself has black roots through an Afro-Peruvian great-grandfather — the father of the maternal grandmother who helped raise him.

(Reuters) - A pit bull named Big Boi began menacing George and Shellie Zimmerman in the fall of 2009.

The first time the dog ran free and cornered Shellie in their gated community in Sanford, Florida, George called the owner to complain. The second time, Big Boi frightened his mother-in-law’s dog. Zimmerman called Seminole County Animal Services and bought pepper spray. The third time he saw the dog on the loose, he called again. An officer came to the house, county records show.

“Don’t use pepper spray,” he told the Zimmermans, according to a friend. “It’ll take two or three seconds to take effect, but a quarter second for the dog to jump you,” he said.

“Get a gun.”

That November, the Zimmermans completed firearms training at a local lodge and received concealed-weapons gun permits. In early December, another source close to them told Reuters, the couple bought a pair of guns. George picked a Kel-Tec PF-9 9mm handgun, a popular, lightweight weapon.

By June 2011, Zimmerman’s attention had shifted from a loose pit bull to a wave of robberies that rattled the community, called the Retreat at Twin Lakes. The homeowners association asked him to launch a neighborhood watch, and Zimmerman would begin to carry the Kel-Tec on his regular, dog-walking patrol – a violation of neighborhood watch guidelines but not a crime.

Few of his closest neighbors knew he carried a gun – until two months ago.

On February 26, George Zimmerman shot and killed unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin in what Zimmerman says was self-defense. The furor that ensued has consumed the country and prompted a re-examination of guns, race and self-defense laws enacted in nearly half the United States.

During the time Zimmerman was in hiding, his detractors defined him as a vigilante who had decided Martin was suspicious merely because he was black. After Zimmerman was finally arrested on a charge of second-degree murder more than six weeks after the shooting, prosecutors portrayed him as a violent and angry man who disregarded authority by pursuing the 17-year-old.

But a more nuanced portrait of Zimmerman has emerged from a Reuters investigation into Zimmerman’s past and a series of incidents in the community in the months preceding the Martin shooting.