Zimmerman acquittal: Cries for justice continue

Supporters of Treyvon Martin and George Zimmerman demonstrate in front of the Seminole County Criminal Justice Center as they wait for the verdict to be announced, July 13, 2013 in Sanford, Florida. The jury found Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer, not guilty in the February 2012 shooting death of 17-year-old Treyvon Martin.
Scott Olson/Getty Images

(CBS News) Jurors reached this moment after 16 hours of deliberations. They found George Zimmerman "not guilty."

Not guilty of murder, and not guilty of manslaughter. The jury of six women agreed prosecutors had not proved their case beyond a reasonable doubt.

Zimmerman shook hands with his lawyers. Behind them in the gallery, his wife Shelly wept.

Trayvon Martin's parents were not in the courtroom when the verdict was read.

Outside the courthouse, 100 demonstrators reacted bitterly, chanting "No justice! No justice!" Most of them wanted a murder conviction.

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People also protested the verdict as far away as San Francisco.

Hundreds of people marched down Mission Street in San Francisco in protest of the acquittal of George Zimmerman of all charges in the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin. KPIX

Since Zimmerman shot the unarmed teenager 17 months ago, this racially-charged case -- and his claim of self-defense -- have divided American public opinion.

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Mark O'Mara, one of Zimmerman's defense lawyers, said, "Obviously we are ecstatic with the result. George Zimmerman was never guilty of anything except protecting himself in self-defense. I'm glad the jury saw it that way."

Prosecutors looked ashen after the verdict was read.

Bernie De La Rionda led the state's case against Zimmerman.

"What it boils down to, you had a 17-year-old kid who was minding his own business, wearing a hoodie, and gets accosted, gets followed by an individual who wants to be a cop," he said. .

Tracy Martin, the teenager's father, tweeted his reaction: "Even though I am broken-hearted, my faith is unshattered. I will always love my baby Tray."

  • Mark Strassmann
    Mark Strassmann

    Mark Strassmann has been a CBS News correspondent since January 2001 and is based in the Atlanta bureau.