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

An Arizona lawmaker accused of a string of violent and unethical behavior resigned from the state House on Wednesday before his fellow lawmakers could throw him out of office.

State Rep. Daniel Patterson of Tucson quit just hours after an ethics panel recommended he be removed from his seat and only a short time before the full House was scheduled to vote to do so.

Read More →

One of the key details to emerge in recent weeks in the killing of unarmed Florida teenager Trayvon Martin was whether his killer, George Zimmerman, used a racial slur before the confrontation.

On Thursday, however, a document filed by Angela Corey, the special prosecutor in the case, made it clear that she does not believe a slur was used, according to CNN.

On a 911 recording, Zimmerman, who is Hispanic, could be heard uttering something under his breath as he called police to report a "suspicious person" in his neighborhood. Martin was black. Many listeners have said they believe Zimmerman said "fucking coons," but the audio isn't clear enough to be definitive.

A CNN reporter who read a copy of the affidavit on air, however, said it made clear that the prosecutor believes Zimmerman used the term "punks" at at that moment.

Zimmerman was charged on Wednesday with second-degree murder in the killing of Martin. He has said the killing was an act of self defense.

George Zimmerman, the Florida man accused of killing unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin, made his first appearance Thursday afternoon in a Seminole County, Fla., courtroom.

Dressed in blue jail jumpsuit, Zimmerman acknowledged he had an attorney but said nothing else. The appearance came a day after he was charged with second-degree murder in the killing.

The judge set his arraignment for May 29. That's when he's expected to plead not guilty to the charge.

Watch Zimmerman's court appearance below:


The grieving mother of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin said on Thursday morning she thinks the killing of her son was an accident.

Appearing on NBC's Today Show the morning after a special prosecutor announced that her son's killer, George Zimmerman, would face a second-degree murder charge, Sabrina Fulton revealed her theory about what happened on Feb. 26 in Sanford, Fla.

"I believe it was an accident," Fulton said. “I believe that it just got out of control and he couldn’t turn the clock back. I would ask him, did he know that that was a minor, that that was a teenager, and that he did not have a weapon?"

The comments came after the prosecutor, Angela Corey, filed the toughest charge she could have without using a grand jury. The second-degree murder charge implies Corey believes the killing, while not premeditated, was no accident and that Zimmerman acted dangerously without regard to human life.

Zimmerman is scheduled to make his first court appearance at 1:30 p.m. ET today.


Updated: April 11, 2012, 10:17 PM

A special prosecutor in Florida on Wednesday charged George Zimmerman with second-degree murder for the killing of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin in a case that has stoked racial tensions and drawn calls for justice from seemingly every corner of the nation.

At a news conference in Florida, prosecutor Angela Corey said Zimmerman was in custody, though she declined to say where. She said the decisions to charge Zimmerman and which specific charge to bring were not easy.

"It is the search for justice for Trayvon that brought us here to this moment," Corey said. "I can tell you that we did not come to this decision lightly."

Read More →

Updated: April 11, 2012, 3:28 PM

George Zimmerman, the Florida man accused of killing unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin will face charges brought by a special prosecutor investigating the matter, according to multiple reports.

Citing unnamed sources, NBC News, the AP and the Washington Post have reported that Zimmerman will be charged. It's still unclear what those charges will be or when they will be announced by prosecutor Angela Corey.

Corey has scheduled to hold a news conference for 6 p.m., ET.

Read More →

Former Arizona prosecutor Andrew Thomas lashed out on Wednesday at the state for stripping him of license to practice law the day before, saying Arizona had become as corrupt as Mexico.

"Arizona, after what happened yesterday, has become Mexico," Thomas said at a news conference in Phoenix. "Powerful politicians twice indicted for corruption have gone free...Insiders who knew how the system works and how to work the system have had a field day."

First elected as the top Maricopa County prosecutor in 2004, Thomas was a longtime ally of Sheriff Joe Arpaio. He was disbarred for what ethics investigators described as a crusade to jail and embarrass the reputations of anyone that dared to oppose him or Arpaio.

Thomas said at the news conference that he plans to return to politics despite the disbarment. He said he planned to organize a measure to appear on the 2012 ballot that would address what he believes is continued widespread problems in Arizona.

"Unless we want Arizona to become as corrupt as Mexico, the people of Arizona must act," he said.

He also revealed that he plans to tell his story in a forthcoming book.

Conservative talk jock Sean Hannity confirmed Tuesday night on his Fox News show that he spoke recently by phone with George Zimmerman, the Florida man accused of killing unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin in an incident that set off a national firestorm.

Earlier in the day, two lawyers who had been representing Zimmerman said they lost contact with their client and heard rumors that he had been talking to the Fox host.

Hannity acknowledged he's been in contact with Zimmerman but agreed to not report on their conversation.

Watch the video: