SANFORD, Fla., May 17 (UPI) -- Prosecutors in Sanford, Fla., Thursday released police reports and other documents and evidence in the killing of Trayvon Martin.
Two police reports written Feb. 26, the night George Zimmerman shot Martin, indicated the neighborhood watch volunteer's face and nose were bloody after the shooting, and two witnesses gave accounts of the shooting that seemed to support Zimmerman's contention he shot the unarmed Martin in self defense, ABC News reported.
However, a report by an investigation officer released Thursday is critical of Zimmerman's decision to follow Martin, who Zimmerman had described as suspicious during a telephone call with an emergency dispatcher. The dispatcher had advised Zimmerman not to pursue Martin.
"The encounter between George Zimmerman and Trayvon Martin was ultimately avoidable by Zimmerman, if Zimmerman had remained in his vehicle and awaited the arrival of law enforcement," the investigator wrote.
Zimmerman has asserted he got out of his vehicle to locate a house number he could give to police, and that Martin punched him in the face and knocked him to the ground before he could get back in his vehicle.
Zimmerman has pleaded not guilty of second-degree murder in the case.
An autopsy report indicated Martin was shot from a distance of 1 to 18 inches and that there was an abrasion on a finger of his left hand, suggesting a struggle. The autopsy also found there was THC -- the active ingredient of marijuana -- in Martin's system.
The Miami Herald reported Martin had been suspended from school not long before the shooting for possession of an empty plastic bag that contained marijuana residue and possession of a marijuana pipe.
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