Nick R. Martin

Nick Martin is an associate editor at TPM in New York City. He came to the site in 2011 as a reporter for TPMMuckraker. Previously, he worked in Arizona, first as a staff reporter for a local newspaper and later as a freelance journalist. He also ran the news blog Heat City. Contact him at nick@talkingpointsmemo.com

Articles by Nick

George Zimmerman began late Thursday to again ask his supporters to help pay for his defense in the killing of unarmed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin.

Zimmerman already raised more than $200,000 for his defense with a crudely built website and a PayPal account that he launched before being charged last month with second-degree murder in the killing, which has drawn international attention.

Zimmerman's attorney, Mark O'Mara, ordered him to shut down the website last week. However, after learning that their client had raised so much cash, the defense team launched their own site days later and vowed to begin taking donations again.

A posting on the site late Thursday said a new PayPal account had been established. The names of donors, it said, would be kept "strictly confidential."

Six anti-tank grenades designed to be fired from a launcher were discovered on Wednesday at the scene of a horrific Arizona mass murder-suicide, which authorities said was carried out by well known white supremacist JT Ready.

The discovery helped expand the probe of the killings to the federal level and has led investigators with the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to begin looking into how Ready was able to obtain the illegal explosives, according to ATF special agent Tom Mangan.

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As Russell Pearce's power in Arizona politics grew over the years, so too did questions about his past friendship with a man who went on to become the most vocal neo Nazi in the state.

So when that neo Nazi reportedly massacred four people in a suburban Phoenix home before turning the gun on himself on Wednesday, reporters naturally turned to the former state Senate president and primary sponsor of Arizona's tough immigration law to comment on the killings.

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Updated: May 2, 2012, 10:26 PM

Longtime white supremacist and border vigilante JT Ready saw himself as part of a war that few others would fight. He amassed weapons. He donned a uniform. He formed his own brigade of volunteers to walk alongside him as he hunted what he described as "narco terrorists" flowing across the Arizona-Mexico border.

On Wednesday, reports out of Arizona said Ready died, not at the hands of drug runners, but with his own gun during a mad rampage inside a suburban home just east of Phoenix. Along the way, the reports said, he took the lives of four other people, including a toddler.

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The man who killed four people and then himself inside a suburban Arizona house on Wednesday was border vigilante and longtime neo-Nazi JT Ready, according to multiple reports.

Citing anonymous sources, the Arizona Republic newspaper identified Ready as the man who walked into a house in Gilbert, Ariz., wearing body armor and killed four, including a toddler, before turning the gun on himself.

This is George Zimmerman's MySpace page. Years before he stood at the center of an international storm over the killing of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin, the Florida man used his page to complain about "mexicans" and celebrate a victory in a criminal case against him.

Today, it remains a small window into the life of a man who has gone into hiding while he awaits trial on a second-degree murder charge. Showing him with a history of relationships with people of multiple races, it also complicates the image critics have painted of him being a racist.

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The police chief of Oceanside, Calif., confirmed on Wednesday that former NFL star Junior Seau was found by his girlfriend with a gunshot wound to the chest in what appears to be a suicide.

Chief Frank McCoy said the girlfriend called police at 9:35 a.m. PT to report the death, according to UT San Diego.

Earlier, the North County Times and Los Angeles Times newspapers reported conflicting information about who found his body and where the gunshot wound was discovered. Both cited anonymous sources.

A chaplain for the San Diego Chargers confirmed the death of former NFL star Junior Seau on Wednesday, the UT San Diego reported.

The newspaper reported earlier that police had been called to the football great's house after getting a 911 call about a suicide.

From the UT:

Chargers chaplain Shawn Mitchell said he was notified of the death and is on his way to be with family members.

“Junior was an icon not only in San Diego but throughout the nation. Of course this will affect a lot of people, not in the least the children and kids who look up to him,” Mitchell said.

Ex-NFL star Junior Seau was found dead Wednesday morning after committing suicide with a gunshot wound to the chest at his California home just north of San Diego, according to a report from the North County Times.

The newspaper said he was found dead by his housekeeper. Police responded to the home a short time later.