SCLC Calls for Peace Ahead of Zimmerman Verdict

The Southern Christian Leadership Conference will rally today outside of the Seminole County courtroom. 

Posted: 07/11/2013 10:03 AM EDT

The Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Florida is calling for peace regardless of the verdict reached in George Zimmerman's second-degree murder trial. 

As jurors begin hearing closing statements Thursday, the civil rights group will rally outside of the Seminole County courtroom to "encourage everyone before the outcome of this verdict to trust the process, trust God, and regardless of the outcome, be peaceful and prayerful," according to a SCLC statement.

The jury is expected to begin deliberating on a verdict as early as Friday afternoon. Zimmerman faces charges of second-degree murder and now manslaughter in the killing of Trayvon Martin on Feb. 26, 2012. Judge Debra Nelson added the charge of manslaughter as an option for the jury Thursday. 

"We would like to say, no matter what the outcome of this trial may be, we have two families that have suffered and will continue to suffer the remainder of their lives," the organization said in a statement.

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 (Photo: Joe Burbank/Orlando Sentinel/POOL)

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