Police Chief in Trayvon Martin Case Resigns

Monday, 23 Apr 2012 02:28 PM

 

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The Sanford police chief criticized for his department's handling of the Trayvon Martin shooting case will resign permanently today, the city announced today.

The resignation will part of a separation agreement with Chief Billy Lee Jr. that commissioners will be asked to approved later today.

"Under the separation agreement, Chief Lee would resign from his post, effective at midnight tonight," the city said in a statement. "The chief's resignation comes a month after he was allowed to temporarily step down from his position as police chief in an effort to aid in restoring calm to the City in the wake of protests surrounding the Trayvon Martin investigation."

Police did not initially charge 28-year-old George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer who claimed he shot the 17-year-old Martin in self-defense.

Florida law gives people broad leeway to use lethal force if they believe their lives are in grave danger. The Feb. 26 shooting sparked protests nationwide, as well as debates about the laws and race. Martin was black; Zimmerman is the son of a white father and Hispanic mother.

Lee had temporarily stepped down as police chief on March 22, saying he wanted to let tensions cool.

© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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