The emotionally and racially charged drama of the entire Martin / Zimmerman nightmare ended poorly indeed. I am part of the outraged crowd that could not believe the verdict.
I haven’t read the official court transcript but believe it was proven evidence that Zimmerman was told (by the police?) to back off and NOT follow Martin. His decision to disobey this command led to the confrontation and created the scenario where the violence could take place.
Therefore, as the initiator of the violence by not doing what he was told, he is accountable and should have been found guilty of a crime severe enough to receive a jail term. While just how long that sentence should be is another issue whose outcome will never be agreed upon by all stakeholders, it would have to be years. In my opinion, double digits.
I’m sure this point was made by uncountable others more knowledgeable and closer to the story than me. I just had to say it out loud for myself.