The Latino man whose killing of unarmed, black teenager Trayvon Martin sparked national protests over race relations has taken to the Web to communicate with his sympathizers and raise funds for his defense.
“As a result of the incident and subsequent media coverage, I have been forced to leave my home, my school, my employer, my family and ultimately, my entire life,” George Zimmerman wrote in a three-paragraph message set against the backdrop of an American flag. “This website's sole purpose is to ensure my supporters they are receiving my full attention without any intermediaries.
The site, therealgeorgezimmerman.com, includes a PayPal link for supporters to send money to offset his living and legal expenses.
Though several websites have appeared claiming to collect money for Zimmerman’s defense, he says he has not received assistance from any of them. The site claims in bold letters “I am the real George Zimmerman.”
George Zimmerman's attorney, Hal Uhrig, confirmed to Fox News that the website, belongs to him.
The new site does not offer any information regarding the shooting. Zimmerman alludes to it only as a “life altering event.”
In a section titled “My Race,” Zimmerman includes only a quote attributed to Thomas Paine reading: "The world is my country, all mankind are my brethren, and to do good is my religion."
The subject of Zimmerman’s racial and ethnic status has confused observers and drawn attention from the national media, which struggled to accurately describe him.
Zimmerman’s mother is from Peru.
While volunteering as a neighborhood watchman in a gated community in the town of Sanford, Zimmerman shot and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin on Feb. 26. Zimmerman says Martin attacked him and that he shot in self defense.
The case has exposed racial tensions and brought scrutiny to Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law, which gives people expanded permission to use lethal force when they perceive a threat to their life.
Some 20 states have similar laws.