"Trayvon Martin Had Drugs in System, Autopsy Found," ABC News tweeted yesterday afternoon. This was not, strictly speaking, true — Martin had a single drug in his system — and even then it's a bit misleading: the "drug" in question is the chemical THC, the active ingredient in marijuana.
Admittedly, "Trayvon Martin Smoked Pot Sometime in the Weeks Before He Was Killed" is not quite as compelling a headline. But it matters, as National Review's Andy McCarthy proves when he cites the ABC article in connection with George Zimmerman's claim, to the 911 dispatcher the night he killed Martin, that the teenager "was on drugs or something." "[T]he prosecutor's affidavit," McCarthy whines, "does not mention that Zimmerman's suspicion about Martin was confirmed by the autopsy."
This is, at least in part, because it wasn't. Time magazine's Maia Szalavitz writes that the levels of THC in Martin's blood "are so low as to almost certainly not be connected to recent intoxication." In fact, the autopsy would seem to definitively disprove Zimmerman's suspicion.
The autopsy isn't the only new bit of evidence and information to come out this week: there's an interview with a former coworker who says Zimmerman was a racist bully ("he was fired for calling HR hotline so many times…he would complain about each and every manager and employee"); there's the video you see above, of Martin buying Skittles and iced tea at the local 7-11 minutes before his dead; there's a document in which the lead police investigator recommends charging Zimmerman with manslaughter.
And there's Zimmerman's medical report. According to another ABC story from earlier this week, Zimmerman suffered two black eyes, a fractured nose, two lacerations on his head, and a minor back injury the night he killed Martin. (McCarthy, in his post, complains that the injuries also get no mention in in the prosecutor's affidavit.) "Zimmerman's medical records," someone wrote me in a message yesterday, "seem to bolster his claim of self-defense."
Sure. But let's at least be honest: the claim that you were defending yourself against the unarmed teenager whom you were stalking is an odd one, at best. And the charge that Martin started a fight with the strange man following him in his father's fiancée's neighborhood, like the charge that he "had drugs in his system," isn't about determining Zimmerman's innocence but about determining Martin's guilt.