Nightly News   |  July 16, 2013

Holder takes aim at Stand Your Ground laws

On Tuesday Attorney General Eric Holder took issue with the so-called ‘Stand Your Ground’-type of laws during a speech at the NAACP Annual Convention in Orlando. Meanwhile, demonstrations over the verdict in the George Zimmerman trial continued, with one protest in Los Angeles turning violent on Monday night. NBC’s Ron Mott reports.

Share This:

This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> three days after the verdict now. still a good deal of anger and protest and other reaction to george zimmerman 's acquittal in the killing of trayvon martin, for the first time, one of the jurors has spoken out about the case, while the u.s. attorney general is taking on the so-called stand your ground laws. on a rainy night outside court in sanford, florida, tonight. ron mott joins us once again with the latest. ron, good evening.

>> reporter: good evening, brian. folks outraged by this verdict, are starting to direct their frustration a bit, they're targeted lawmakers and self-defense laws known as stand your ground . for the third straight day more demonstrations, mostly mod necessity size. downtown houston , florida's capital, tallahassee.

>> we are here because trayvon cannot be.

>> reporter: governor rick scott 's office was overtaken in his absence. in los angeles yesterday, what started out calmly --

>> they're beating somebody up.

>> reporter: turned violent by night.

>> we deployed over 300 police officers , dozen arrests, multiple incidents of vandalism, several incidents of assault. this will not be allowed to continue.

>> reporter: with issues of race still firm and censored, calling george zimmerman 's acquittal -- the first juror spoke publicly on cnn.

>> i think if there was another person, spanish, white, asian, if they came in the same situation where trayvon was, i think george would have reacted the exact same way.

>> reporter: today, attorney general eric holder , under pressure from the justice department to bring charges against george zimmerman , took issue with the stand your ground law.

>> we must stand our ground to ensure our laws reduce violence and take a hard look at laws that contribute to more violence than they prevent.

>> the lesson we take from mr. martin is that we do not have the luxury to exist in life.

>> reporter: trayvon martin's death and the verdict were the focus of suggestions.

>> when the verdict happened, i wasn't surprised. but much like everybody else, i felt a feeling of despair, of anger. and having that feeling made me feel like there's so much more work that needs to be done.

>> reporter: in their first tv interview since the verdict, george zimmerman 's parents offered their apologies to trayvon martin's parents saying they are deeply sorry for this