Charlotte Golar Richie to hold youth forum to discuss verdict in Trayvon Martin slaying case

Boston mayoral candidate Charlotte Golar Richie said Monday she will organize a youth forum later this month to discuss the verdict in the George Zimmerman case and other issues important to young people.

Golar Richie attended a rally Sunday in Dudley Square at which hundreds protested the not-guilty verdict in the shooting of Trayvon Martin, an unarmed African-American teenager killed by a neighborhood watch volunteer in Florida. The protest in Dudley Square was dominated by young people, Golar Richie said, some of whom have been unfairly profiled or ostracized like Martin.

“I have heard from them the anguish and the terrible disappointment around the verdict,” Golar Richie said. “But I also think that out of this, there is an opportunity to really tackle this issue of violence, engage youth as partners, and improving our community.”

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Golar Richie’s campaign is organizing the forum at 4:30 p.m. July 27 at a location yet to be determined. As part of her campaign, Golar Richie said she wants to bring attention to urban violence and other issues that affect youths.

“I want to be a mayor that presides over an administration that is going to engage young people in a very different way than we’ve maybe seen in the past,” Golar Richie said. “I think I have a strong idea about what young people need. Obviously, all the candidates are going to agree on education, they are going to agree on jobs. But I think I’m going to be able to bring to this issue and to the job as mayor an increased intensity around this issue and sense of urgency.”

Golar Richie said she has spoken with clergy, law enforcement, and others about the Martin case. The Department of Justice said Sunday it would review the case, which could prompt criminal civil rights charges.

Golar Richie said the United States is fortunate to have a criminal justice system that can be discussed, debated, and improved.

“But I also know sometimes we don’t get it right,” Golar Richie said when asked about the verdict in Zimmerman’s case. “I do support the idea of the Department of Justice taking a look at this, and let’s see what they have to say.”