As Zimmerman and his supporters have remained relatively quiet, people have spoken out against the incident nationwide.
Students, UNC employees and local residents held signs while marching quietly from the post office to the Pit to protest the shooting and its aftermath, starting at around 11:30 a.m.
The participants wore hoodies and carried Skittles and tea because the unarmed Martin had been wearing and carrying those items when he was shot.
Freshman Brandon Napier, one of the participants, said he is disgusted by the situation.
“It’s heartbreaking to know he was killed for no reason,” he said. “My heart goes out to the family.”
Napier said it’s important for Chapel Hill to be involved because the case affects the country as a whole — not just Florida.
“I’m proud to be at a university that observes this,” he said. “People in Chapel Hill have a right to march.”
A few police officers were on hand for the march to the Pit, but Chapel Hill Police Department Patrol Captain Jeff Clark said the presence was to get the crowd across the street safely in the heavy midday traffic, not to monitor them.
Once the group arrived at the Pit, chants of “I am Trayvon Martin, we are Trayvon Martin” and “Justice for Trayvon Martin” rang out.
Several speakers, adults and students alike, entered into the middle of the crowd to speak.
Senior D.J. Rogers, another speaker at the rally, said he’s against Florida’s “stand your ground law” because it’s preventing justice for Martin.
“Unjust laws will topple you if you let them,” he said.
Resident Kim Daniels said she came to show her support because she hopes North Carolina will change its castle law — which states that deadly force can be used in defense of a person’s home, car or workplace — to ensure that something similar couldn’t happen here.
Many said the N.C. law is too similar to Florida’s “stand-your-ground” law.
“What happened in Florida could happen anywhere,” Daniels said.
Rev. Curtis Gatewood of the N.C. NAACP also spoke at the event.
He said people should not allow injustice to continue and need to move beyond hatred based on race.
“This must be a movement, not a moment,” he said.
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