ABC News: Friend on phone with Trayvon Martin recalls final moments before death



SEMINOLE COUNTY, Fla. - The outcry over the shooting death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin has now prompted a federal investigation, and ABC News talked exclusively to a 16-year-old girl who was on the phone with Martin in the moments before he was shot and killed.

She said Martin told her he saw someone watching him and tried to get away.

“He said this man was watching him… so he put his hoodie on. 'What are you following me for?' The man says 'what you doing around here'… then the man like, like pushed Trayvon cause his headset like fell," the girl told ABC News.

The girl said after that the phone went dead and when she called back, Trayvon never answered.

The girl's parents didn't want her identified and would only allow an attorney for Martin's family to ask questions.

Read more from ABC News here

Meanwhile, Sanford's mayor, Jeff Triplett and Congresswoman Corrine Brown are headed to Washington, DC Tuesday morning to meet with Attorney General Eric Holder about the case.

People have been showing up all across central Florida to protest the shooting in Sanford.  Now, their cries for justice seem to be picking up traction.

The U.S. Justice Department announced Monday night that it will review the investigation into the events that resulted in the teenager's death. The U.S. attorney's office and the FBI are also opening investigations into the killing.

It's been three weeks since Martin was shot and killed by George Zimmerman and the outrage across the country is still raw. 

Zimmerman told police he shot Martin in self-defense after calling 911 to report that the boy was acting suspiciously. Martin was walking home from a nearby store and only had a bag of Skittles and an iced tea.

On Monday night, Sanford police released six of the 46 calls Zimmerman routinely made to police during the months leading up to the night he shot and killed Martin.

Zimmerman placed approximately 10 percent of all the calls from his neighborhood to the Sanford Police last year.

Four of the six calls Zimmerman made to police start exactly the same way: He calls to report suspicious black men in his gated community.

Zimmerman told one of the emergency operators that his neighborhood had been "plagued" by a rash of break-ins.

In a call reporting the break-ins, Zimmerman told the operator he thought he'd found the suspects: "Two African American males."

In the calls, Zimmerman even reported things that are normal in neighborhoods, like an open garage door and kids playing in the street.

WFTV also found out the 28-year-old has a history of not just reporting people to the police, but also following them, like he did with Martin.

Eight years ago, Zimmerman followed some people who stole from a supermarket. Another time Zimmerman followed a driver who he accused of spitting on him from car to car after he had already reported the driver to the police.

Authorities said those are the only calls available because recordings are deleted after seven months.

On Monday, more than 75 students, mostly from Florida A&M University, rallied outside the Seminole County courthouse demanding that the state attorney's office file charges against Zimmerman.

"Why is Seminole County the only county in the U.S. where a pack of Skittles is equivalent to a 9-millimeter?" asked protester Jason Reed.

Students met with Pat Whitaker from the State's Attorney's office who told them they're considering manslaughter charges, but that it could take weeks before a decision is made.

The White House is also talking about the case. The president's press secretary was asked about the investigation during a press briefing on Monday.

"Our thoughts and prayers go out to Trayvon Martin's family. But obviously we're not going to wade into a local law enforcement matter," said Press Secretary Jay Carney.

He said the White House was aware of what happened, but would let local and national investigators handle the case.

WFTV’s legal analyst Bill Sheaffer said if Zimmerman is never charged criminally, he could be a target for a civil case.

Sheaffer said Martin's family could also go after the homeowner's association since Zimmerman claims he was acting as a neighborhood watchman.

But he believes that would be tough to win.

"Unless we learn that the HOA either sanctioned the carrying of the gun or had some other input that led to the shooting the likelihood of recovery I believe is remote,” said Sheaffer.

Sheaffer said it appears Zimmerman was acting on his own when he decided to follow Martin while he was armed.

The Justice Department released the following statement Monday night on the death of Trayvon Martin:

"The Justice Department's Civil Rights Division, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Middle District of Florida, and the FBI opened an investigation into the facts and circumstances of the shooting death of Trayvon Martin. The department will conduct a thorough and independent review of all of the evidence and take appropriate action at the conclusion of the investigation. The department also is providing assistance to and cooperating with the state officials in their investigation into the incident. With all federal civil rights crimes, the government must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a person acted intentionally and with the specific intent to do something which the law forbids – the highest level of intent in criminal law. Negligence, recklessness, mistakes and accidents are not prosecutable under the federal criminal civil rights laws.

The Community Relations Service will be in Sanford, Fla., this week to meet with civil rights leaders, community leaders, and local law enforcement to address tension in the community."