George Zimmerman filed a lawsuit against NBC on Thursday, claiming defamation of character when the network edited and aired his 911 call after the shooting of Trayvon Martin to make him sound racist.
George Zimmerman, who was a neighborhood watch volunteer in his Florida neighborhood, filed the suit in Seminole County, Florida, outside of Orlando, for an undisclosed amount of money.
Also named in the complaint were three reporters covering the story for NBC or an NBC-owned television station.
NBC aired an edited version of the 911 call George Zimmerman made last February after he shot and killed Trayvon Martin during a dispute and struggle.
“NBC saw the death of Trayvon Martin not as a tragedy but as an opportunity to increase ratings, and so set about to create a myth that George Zimmerman was a racist and predatory villain,” the lawsuit claims.
NBC spokeswoman Kathy Kelly-Brown said the network strongly disagreed with the accusations made in the complaint.
“There was no intent to portray Mr. Zimmerman unfairly,” she said. “We intend to vigorously defend our position in court.”
Three employees of the network or its Miami affiliate lost their jobs because of the edited version of the call.
Zimmerman was charged with second-degree murder but has pleaded not guilty, claiming self-defense under Florida’s “stand your ground law.”
George Zimmerman became public enemy number one after the Trayvon Martin case spread throughout the media earlier this year.
James Gilbert | Elite.