(NEWS ONE)- Medical examiners found evidence of marijuana in Trayvon Martin‘s system after he was fatally shot by a neighborhood watch volunteer, according to an autopsy released Thursday in a massive package of evidence.
Also included in the release was an investigator’s recommendation to prosecutors that suspect George Zimmerman be arrested on manslaughter charges. The investigator, who was on the scene after the shooting, wrote on March 13 that the confrontation should have been avoided. That report came nearly a month before Zimmerman was arrested.
The documents, photos and video were turned over by prosecutors to defense attorneys earlier this week before they were released to the media. Among the many witness interviews were accounts by an acquaintance of Zimmerman’s who said he’s racist and a co-worker who said Zimmerman bullied him and mocked him with an exaggerated Middle Eastern accent.
The autopsy says medical examiners found THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, when they tested Martin’s blood and urine. A police report shows Martin had been shot once in the chest and had been pronounced dead at the scene.
Also in the package is a photo showing Zimmerman with a bloody nose on the night of the fight. A paramedic report says Zimmerman had a 1-inch laceration on his head and forehead abrasion.
“Bleeding tenderness to his nose, and a small laceration to the back of his head. All injuries have minor bleeding,” paramedic Michael Brandy wrote about Zimmerman’s injuries in the report.
Whether Zimmerman was injured in the Feb. 26 altercation with Martin has been a key question. Zimmerman has claimed self-defense and said he only fired because the unarmed teenager attacked him.
Zimmerman was not arrested for weeks because he invoked Florida’s “stand-your-ground” law, which does not require a person to retreat in the face of a serious threat. He was released on bail and is in hiding while he awaits trial on a second-degree murder charge. He has pleaded not guilty.
The investigator who called for Zimmerman’s arrest, Christopher Serino, told prosecutors in March that the fight could have been avoided if Zimmerman had remained in his vehicle and awaited the arrival of law enforcement. He said Zimmerman, after leaving his vehicle, could have identified himself to Martin as a concerned citizen and talked to him instead of confronting him.
He said there is no evidence Martin was involved in any criminal activity.
The lawyer for Martin’s parents seized on the investigator’s recommendation.
“The police concluded that none of this would have happened if George Zimmerman hadn’t gotten out of his car,” said attorney Ben Crump. “If George Zimmerman hadn’t gotten out of his car, they say it was completely avoidable. That is the headline.”
A separate report written by Serino at the crime scene says Martin had $40.15, Skittles candy, a red lighter, headphones and a photo pin in his pocket. A single 9mm shell casing was found near Martin’s body.