George Zimmerman has been charged with second degree murder in the shooting death of unarmed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, says prosecutor Angela Corey.
Zimmerman has surrendered to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, his new lawyer, Mark O'Mara, told CNN legal analyst Mark NeJame.
Martin, 17, was killed February 26 as he returned to his father's fiancee's house in Sanford, Florida, after picking up candy and an iced tea at a nearby convenience store.
Zimmerman, a 28-year-old neighborhood watch volunteer, says he shot Martin in self-defense.
The case has drawn comments from President Obama and the United Nations, led to protest marches in cities and campuses around the country, and sparked a nationwide debate about race in America and Florida's "stand your ground" law, which allows the use of deadly force by anyone who feels a reasonable threat of death or serious injury. Readings of the law are crucial to a prosecution, Conway said.
The six weeks between Martins death and the announcement that Zimmerman would face charges led critics to list Martin along civil rights martyrs slain in the pursuit of racial justice.
Zimmermans supporters have sought, in turn, to portray him as a symbol of an essential American character, the community protector who risks his own safety to help his neighbors.
The news that Zimmerman would be charged came shortly after the Rev. Al Sharpton and the Martin family attorney called for the public to remain peaceful whatever the decision of the special prosecutor.
Follow coverage on CNN.com, CNN TV and CNN's mobile apps.Watch live coverage now on http://CNN.com/Live
A bad Credit Score is 598 or below.
Click here to get your 2012 score instantly for $0!
You have opted-in to receive this e-mail from CNN.com. To unsubscribe from Breaking News e-mail alerts, go to: http://cgi.cnn.com/m/clik?l=textbreakingnews
One CNN Center Atlanta, GA 30303
(c) & (r) 2012 Cable News Network