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Civil rights charges unlikely in Trayvon Martin case

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department is not expected to bring civil rights charges against George Zimmerman in the 2012 shooting death of Trayvon Martin, according to three law enforcement officials, despite allegations that the killing was racially motivated.

The federal investigation of Zimmerman was opened two years ago by the department's civil rights division, but officials said there is insufficient evidence to bring federal charges. The investigation technically remains open, but it is all but certain the department will close it.

Investigators still want to "dot their i's and cross their t's," said one official, who like others spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to comment on the matter, the Washington Post reported.

Martin, a 17-year-old African-American, was unarmed when he was fatally shot by Zimmerman, a former volunteer neighborhood watchman who identifies himself as Hispanic. The killing sparked racial tension and protests across the country.

Zimmerman was acquitted of second-degree murder and manslaughter in a state trial in Sanford last year.

An attorney for Martin's family said his parents have not heard a final decision from U.S. officials.