ALBANY, N.Y. – Local groups have joined together to help young people express their feelings about the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the fatal shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.
On Tuesday the Center for Law and Justice, the African American Cultural Center of the Capital Region, and Urban Arts Experience held a special program on the downtown campus of the University at Albany.
In anticipation of the Zimmerman decision, the groups made plans several weeks in advance of the six-woman jury's decision to acquit Zimmerman. The group was initially split with half voting to acquit, two for manslaughter and one for second-degree murder, according to the first juror to speak publicly.
The youth program examined situations like the one Trayvon Martin was involved in prior to his death, as well as others youth may encounter with law enforcement officers and other persons in authoritative positions.
Students discussed how to overcome stereotypes in their community and learned about their rights. A lawyer, criminal justice expert, former prisoner and educator on-hand helped students understand the case.
The not guilty verdict in the murder case against George Zimmerman has some teens here in Albany that attended the seminar upset at American culture.
"A man can go to jail for killing dogs, but I can just follow a man around and kill him and say ‘it's self-defense,'" said 17-year-old Sincere Dupree. "It's not fair."
Dupree attended a seminar at the University at Albany on Tuesday. He thinks the outcome wasn't fair because he believes Trayvon Martin was profiled, like he is.
"I think I'm targeted because I'm black," said Dupree. "Because there's so many stereotypes out there."
He says similar deadly outcomes are common on his block.
"It happens everyday," said Dupree, but he added that he wants to see change and would like to see the stereotypes to go away. That's why his message to other teens is clear.
"You can do more than just sell drugs and be a thug," said Dupree.
At the seminar teens watched skits to help them learn how to act appropriately. Jessica Gorman, a practicing attorney, spoke to teens at the seminar about their rights. She said regardless of the situation, safety should always be the focus.
"We want to keep things from escalating, we want everybody to go home alive and in one piece at the end of the day," said Gorman.
Anyone interested in learning more and would like to join the discussion about what people believe has changed since the George Zimmerman verdict, can do so this Thursday at the Albany African American Cultural Center located at 135 South Pearl Street in Albany. The meeting will begin at 1 p.m.
Local News <a href="http://www.wten.com/category/173731/-local-news">More>></a>Local NewsMore>>
SCHENECTADY, N.Y. – A fire broke out at St. Anthony's Church Friday evening. The call for the fire at 331 Seward Place came in around 6:30 p.m. The fire started in the basement and spread upward causingMore >>
A fire broke out at St. Anthony's Church Friday evening.More >>
TROY, N.Y. – A local church is giving a gun away in a raffle, and a politician has received threats for participating in the event. Grace Baptist Church in Troy will be giving a gun away in a raffle onMore >>
A local church is giving a gun away in a raffle, and a politician has received threats for participating in the event.More >>
SOUTH GLENS FALLS N.Y. – The 37TH Annual South High Marathon Dance kicks off tonight at 7 p.m. in the South Glens Falls High School gym. The Marathon Dance has been around for decades, starting with onlyMore >>
The 37th annual South High Marathon Dance kicked-off Friday. More >>
TROY, N.Y. – A fire broke out at the Red Front restaurant in Troy Friday evening. The call for the fire came in just after 6 p.m. The fire started in the attic of the Division Street eatery. The restaurantMore >>
A fire broke out at the Red Front restaurant in Troy Friday evening.More >>
ALBANY, N.Y. – The University at Albany Police Department is warning the school community about an e-mail scheme circulating various campuses around the country. The e-mail scheme contains threateningMore >>
The University at Albany Police Department is warning the school community about an e-mail scheme circulating various campuses around the country.More >>
EAST GREENBUSH, N.Y. – A 19-year-old was arrested and charged Friday for having sexual relations with a minor. An investigation by the East Greenbush Police Department determined Jared Watts had sexualMore >>
A 19-year-old was arrested and charged Friday for having sexual relations with a minor.More >>
JOHNSTOWN, N.Y. – Police arrested a Johnstown man for an August 2013 assault. Ricky Mitchell was arrested and charged with one count of Assault in the Second Degree and one count of Endangering the WelfareMore >>
Police arrested a Johnstown man for an August 2013 assault.More >>
GLOVERSVILLE, N.Y. – Police made an arrest for multiple drug charges in Fulton County. Freddie Barksdale was arrested for one count of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Third DegreeMore >>
Police made an arrest for multiple drug charges in Fulton County.More >>
CAROGA, N.Y. – Police made an arrest for burglary in Fulton County. Cori Ostrander was arrested and charged with one count of Burglary for entering the attached garage of the Outlet Restaurant with theMore >>
Police made an arrest for burglary in Fulton County.More >>
JOHNSTOWN, N.Y. – Police arrested and charged a Johnstown man for Grand Larceny. James Anderson was charged with one count of Grand Larceny for allegedly stealing a credit or debit card from a pocketbookMore >>
Police arrested and charged a Johnstown man for Grand Larceny.More >>