For the second day in a row, South Florida high school students staged walkouts from class to protest the shooting death of Dr. Krop High student Trayvon Martin.
Angered by a lack of charges against the self-professed nightwatchman who shot Martin and the circumstances leading the man to determine the teen was "suspicious," students from at least 15 schools in the county left classes and hit the streets, according to CBS Miami.
Widely circulated arial photos showed students from Southridge High in Miami-Dade County forming the letters "T M" on the school's football field, while Gio Benitez captured the prevailing sentiment of fellow African-American high schoolers:
Martin, 17, was wearing a hoodie and talking on his cellphone to his girlfriend while walking home through his father's gated neighborhood in Sanford. 28-year-old George Zimmerman thought Martin looked “suspicious," calling 911 and ignoring a request from the dispatcher not approach the teen. A scuffle ensued, and Zimmer fatally shot Martin, who was reportedly carrying only Skittles and iced tea, in the chest.
Just north of Martin's mother's home in Miami Gardens, students from Blanche Ely High School in Broward County also walked out of school.
"For the most part they are being organized and are being supported by the school family as an outpouring show of support," Broward County Public Schools spokesman Nadine Drew told NBC Miami. "I think the reaction is similar to the national reaction. I don't think our students are any different than others."
Thursday saw an initial walkout at Carol City High, where Martin had gone to school for two years.
Though his mother Sabryna Fulton asked students not to do "this sort of thing" -- suggesting instead they sign petitions, Martin's peers at Edison High were even accompanied by the band on Friday, reports the Miami Herald:
At Edison High School, the school band marched alongside hundreds of students as they took laps and remained on campus.
Some wore hoodies, others wore the school’s red-and-black colors, in a show of unity as they marched in circles around the track carrying signs with Trayvon’s picture...The mantra: "No justice, no peace" could be heard for blocks.
Public outcry has grown louder in recent weeks over a lack of charges against Zimmerman, who claimed self defense in the shooting. Much-criticized Sanford Police Chief Bill Lee has temporarily resigned. Seminole County state attorney Norman R. Wolfinger, stepped down from the case Thursday night.
"We are tired of going to jail for nothing and others going home for something," the Rev. Al Sharpton said at a rally in Sanford on Thursday. "Zimmerman should have been arrested that night... you cannot defend yourself against a pack of Skittles and iced tea....Lock him up!"
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