The city manager of Sanford, Florida, said moving a makeshift memorial to slain Miami teen Trayvon Martin was done at the request of residents near the townhomes where the shooting took place. “the citizens living in the area had become concerned that this incident was defining their neighborhood,” Norton Bonaparte said. The “incident” – the killing of Trayvon Martin on February 26th, led to weeks of protests, and ultimately to the prosecution of the man who shot Martin, and the firing of the city’s police chief.
The decision to move the memorial was accompanied by a brief statement emailed to the media Monday.
“In an effort to protect and preserve the remaining Trayvon Martin curbside memorial items, and after communicating with representatives of Trayvon Martin’s family,” the statement read, “Sanford City Manager, Norton Bonaparte announced that the curbside memorial site items placed outside the entrance of the Retreat at Twin Lakes Subdivision in Sanford have been taken to the Sanford Museum as of 2:30 pm today by city staff. All the items retrieved have been carefully handled and inventoried.”
However, representatives for Martin’s family, and leaders of Sanford’s African-American community, say key parts of that statement are not true.
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