“For far too long, we have kept silent about our plight at the hands of those who made assertions about our family members that were false,” he wrote. “Many assertions made about my brother have now proven to be false as well.”
The family believes they were skewered by the “national media machine” that did not uncover hard facts, but instead was manipulated into destroying the Zimmermans’ lives. He made a reference to what critics have dubbed the “scheme team:” attorneys Jackson and Benjamin Crump and Orlando publicist Ryan Julison.
Conservative critics accuse the three of orchestrating a false narrative about the case for their own profit, presumably a payout from the insurance policy of the homeowner’s association where Zimmerman lived.
In the past week, Robert Jr. appeared on Geraldo Rivera’s show, Univision’s Despierta America, and several radio and TV shows out of Los Angeles. His assignment: to read a condolence letter to Trayvon’s parents and paint his brother as a married, working, college student who was attacked by Trayvon and libeled in the press.
Robert Jr. denied a request by The Miami Herald for an interview.
On Monday, he appeared on Piers Morgan Tonight with his mother, her face obscured. Gladys Zimmerman froze at probing questions and offered condolences only after she was pressed by the show’s host.
Once the show was over, Robert Jr. reacted strongly to tweets referring to comments his mother made about a 2010 case of a homeless black man beaten by a Sanford cop’s son. Her son, Gladys Zimmerman said, was the only one who helped the man.
The homeless man was represented by Jackson, the Martin family lawyer, who grew up in Sanford and has a solid Twitter following that enjoys her sarcastic remarks about the case. On Monday, she alluded to him being a “murderer” and suggested that his brother’s CNN appearance was a fundraising drive.
That’s when Robert Jr. responded with a series of tweets threatening her license. She quipped back: “Please see my Rule #1: Never argue with a fool, onlookers may not be able to tell the difference — Mark Twain.”
In an email Tuesday, Robert Jr. stood by his twitter tirade.
“I don’t want her to be able to use her position as an attorney to assassinate anyone else’s character or to ever hurt anyone else’s family,” he said.
Jackson dismissed the spat, saying she could not be sure if the person who posted the threats was really Zimmerman’s brother.
“I don’t take stuff personally from family members,” Jackson said in an interview. “I do criminal defense work and I understand how families react. I don’t think people should attack them or threaten them in any way. It’s stressful when someone you love is possibly going to jail for life.”
Zimmerman, 29, is charged with second-degree murder for the Feb. 26 shooting of Trayvon, 17, who was spending the weekend at a Central Florida townhouse complex. Zimmerman called police when he thought the teen looked suspicious, and minutes later the two were tussling on the grass.
Zimmerman says he was forced to shoot Trayvon, who attacked him. Prosecutors say Zimmerman, a former neighborhood watch volunteer, profiled the teenager and has no claim to self defense.
Attorney Crump said he preferred not to comment on the tweet directed at him by Zimmerman’s brother.
“We are trying to stay focused on holding the killer responsible for the death of Trayvon. We’re trying to keep it there,” he said. “Name-calling doesn’t get us anywhere.”