“Law and Order: Special Victims Unit,” part of a franchise long famous for its stories “ripped straight from the headlines” will air an episode in its upcoming season based on the Trayvon Martin case.
According to The New York Daily News”, actress Cybill Shepherd, of “Moonlighting” and “Taxi Driver” fame was recently in front a New York courthouse filming an episode for “SVU” in which she plays a vigilante-type character loosely based on George Zimmerman, the Florida neighborhood watchman who shot and killed an unarmed Black teenager Martin.
The incident and Zimmerman’s subsequent acquittal sparked public outrage and protests around the country.
In the “Law and Order” episode, art imitates life as Shepherd’s character apparently kills a Black teen named Mehcad. In the scene observed by the Daily News: “As Shepherd and her legal team try to leave the court, they’re swarmed by a gaggle of reporters and confronted with angry people waving signs similar to the ones seen at dozens of rallies held in honor of Martin over the last year.”
Additional details will probably remain sketchy until the episode airs in October.
Last month, Zimmerman was acquitted of second-degree murder for the 2012 slaying of the 17-year-old teen, igniting nationwide protests and ongoing efforts to change both Florida’s controversial “Stand Your Ground” law and the culture of the nation’s criminal justice system.