Follow-Up of the Day: Zimmerman May Be Charged With Hate Crime

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Follow-Up of the Day: Zimmerman May Be Charged With Hate Crime
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George Zimmerman, currently facing second-degree murder charges in the February 26 shooting death of Trayvon Martin, also may be charged with a hate crime. According to Orlando ABC affiliate WFTV:

WFTV has learned charges against George Zimmerman could be getting more serious. State prosecutors said Zimmerman, a neighborhood watchman, profiled and stalked 17-year-old Trayvon Martin before killing him, so the FBI is now looking into charging him with a hate crime. Zimmerman admitted to killing Martin in February during a confrontation. However, he claims the shooting was in self-defense. He's facing a second-degree murder charge, which carries a maximum possible sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole. But if Zimmerman is charged and found guilty of a federal hate crime involving murder, he could face the death penalty. FBI investigators are actively questioning witnesses in the retreat at the Twin Lakes neighborhood, seeking evidence for a possible federal hate crime charge.

[globalgrind]

Hate Crime Stand of the Day

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Hate Crime Stand of the Day
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The United Nations has called for passage of an anti-discrimination law after Daniel Zamudio, a gay man who was brutally attacked March 3 in Chile, died from his injuries last week. Zamudio was apparently targeted for his sexual orientation. His four attackers, who have been charged with aggravated murder, beat him for an hour, burned him with cigarettes, and carved Nazi swastikas on his body.

"The case should be seen in the wider context of hate-motivated violence against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender persons around the world," said Rupert Colville, a spokesman for the U.N. high commissioner for human rights.

[cnn]

Hate Crime Investigation of the Day

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Hate Crime Investigation of the Day
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Shaima Alawadi, a 32-year-old mother of five who emigrated from Iraq with her husband 17 years ago, was found severely beaten inside her El Cajon, California home next to a note that allegedly read "go back to your own country. You're a terrorist."

Alawadi was rushed to the hospital, but passed away a short while later.

One of her three daughters, Fatima Al Himidi, told KUSI she found Alawadi unconscious in the dining room. The attacker had apparently broken in through the sliding glass door and assaulted Alawadi repeatedly with a tire iron. Al Himidi said the attacker was gone by the time she came downstairs.

According to Lt. Mark Coit of the El Cajon police, the family had received a note similar to the one left near Alawadi earlier this month, but thought it was a prank, so did not bother reporting it to authorities.

"Given the fact of these notes left, we’re obviously concerned about the possibility of a hate crime," said the executive director of CAIR's San Diego branch, Hanif Mohebi. "I don’t think anyone would disagree this is a coldblooded murder."

Investigators say they believe this was "an isolated incident," and a hate crime is just "one of the possibilities" they are exploring.

[utsandiego / cnn.]

Fast Food Fracas of the Day

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Fast Food Fracas of the Day: A video uploaded to the Internet last week by 22-year-old McDonald's employee Vernon Hackett appears to show 22-year-old Chrissy Lee Polis being assaulted by two other patrons at a Rosedale (Maryland) location, while