INDIANAPOLIS - An Indianapolis minister says rallies triggered by George Zimmerman's acquittal in the shooting of Trayvon Martin are aimed at making life safer for young black men like the unarmed teen.
Pastor Jeffrey Johnson addressed a large crowd that gathered at the federal courthouse in downtown Indianapolis for at "Justice for Trayvon" rally Saturday. The rally was one of about 100 organized by the Rev. Al Sharpton's National Action Network one week after Zimmerman's acquittal.
Protestors demanded a change in the state's so-called Stand Your Ground law.
"I think when someone's the aggressor and goes after, especially a kid, and you take the stand your grand rule and self defense, I don't think that's right because he was the aggressor," said Rep. Robin Shackleford, D-Indianapolis.
The rallies were scheduled to press for civil rights charges against Zimmerman, but Johnson says that changed after Attorney General Eric Holder announced the government would investigate whether Zimmerman can be charged.
"We want the governor to commission a special committee to look at Indiana's Stand Your Ground law," said Stephen Clay with Indiana National Action Network.
Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois said he would conduct a hearing in the fall over the laws. He will hold the hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee panel on civil rights that he chairs.
Johnson said young black men still are endangered by racial profiling, and that needs to change.
Police estimated the crowd at the Indianapolis rally was about 200. The event was cut short by rain, but demonstrators made their voices heard
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