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Jury: George Zimmerman not guilty in death of Trayvon Martin

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In one of the most widely watched courtroom sagas of the last few years, George Zimmerman has been found not guilty in the second-degree murder of Trayvon Martin.

The Florida neighborhood watch volunteer was also acquitted of a lesser charge of manslaughter in the February 2012 shooting death of the unarmed teenager.

After three weeks of testimony, more than 50 witnesses and 16 hours of jury deliberating over two days, the all-female six-member jury notified the judge they had reached a verdict shortly before 10 p.m. ET Saturday, the Associated Press reported.

When the verdict was read, Zimmerman appeared to smile just slightly, and his wife, Shellie, was in tears, the New York Times reported.

Judge Debra Nelson told Zimmerman he was free to go.

Members of families on both sides of the case tweeted reactions, the AP reported.

CNN coverage of the ruling itself:

The case ignited a number of national debates, including about racial profiling and civil rights. The Washington Post notes that the case "whittled into the American vernacular, transforming “hoodie” sweatshirts into cultural markers and provoking a painful reexamination of race relations in this country."

The Miami Herald and Orlando Sentinel have live blogs featuring some of the reaction to the verdict.

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