Sgt. who had targets that resembled Trayvon Martin hopes to keep job



PORT CANAVERAL, Fla. - A former Port Canaveral police sergeant is expected to appeal his termination over claims he tried to use shooting targets that resembled Trayvon Martin.

The Port Canaveral police chief said he's firing Sgt. Ron King sparked after other officers reported King showed up to a training session at the Brevard Community College gun range carrying targets showing a hooded figure with a drink can and Skittles in his pocket.

The image has become a well-known symbol in the death of the 17-year-old Martin, who was shot and killed by George Zimmerman in Sanford last year. Investigators found Martin was carrying Skittles and iced tea when he died.

King was at the port headquarters Friday to meet with the chief behind closed doors. Channel 9's Jeff Deal was told King is appealing the termination and wants to keep his job.

But Port Canaveral interim CEO John Walsh said he has already put the termination into motion, citing two department violations.

"Whether his act was hatred or stupidity, none is tolerable," said Walsh.

Nearly two hours after King didn't show up to the hearing, the Port informed Channel 9 the hearing had been postponed.

For now, the Port Police Department has held off termination and is asking the Brevard County Sheriff's Office to conduct an internal investigation into the incident.

Internal investigation documents Channel 9 obtained from a witness claims "Sgt. King stated he bought 100 of these and offered me one."

"He had a target in the back of his car and offered it to two other officers with the port," said Walsh. "They rejected his offer and told him to put it back in the car."

Officials will not say if the targets were actually used by King.

King took to Youtube to fire back and defend himself earlier this week, claiming this is an attack by another sergeant.

"I would like to start my statement by first apologizing to the family of Trayvon Martin for being used as a pawn in somebody's political agenda," he said.

King admits he bought the targets but planned to use them as a no-shoot target.

King has been employed with the Port Canaveral Police Department since January 2011, officials said. Port officials told WFTV King purchased the targets on the Internet.