A grown man is trying to auction off a gun he used to kill a teenage boy as a piece of history.
George Zimmerman, who shot and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Florida in 2012 and was subsequently acquitted of murder, is trying to make a profit off his weapon. The auction listing for the gun, on the website United Gun Group Auction currently says the asking price is more than $65 million.
Many of the 1,019 bids come from insincere sources; names like “Racist McShootFace,” “Donald Trump,” and “Tamir Rice,” a 12-year-old boy who was shot and killed by Cleveland police who mistook his toy gun for the real thing in 2014.
But toward the bottom of the listing, away from the troll-y names and snarky remarks, is a sincere plea from a man named Jeff Posey.
“I would like to make a legitimate offer on this gun,” the comment reads. “Please contact me Mr. Zimmerman. Thank you.”
Posey left his email in the space below more than a dozen other comments, but he doesn’t want the gun for himself—he wants it so it cannot cause any more harm.
“Nothing would be more tragic or insulting to the Martin family than allowing some adolescent redneck to buy this gun and spend the next 30 years waving it around on YouTube,” Posey told The Daily Beast via email. “If putting $5K in Zimmerman’s pocket today is how we prevent that, then it’s worth it.”
Posey, a mechanic in Summerville, Georgia, and a self-described “life long gun collector,” is willing to pay the starting price for the gun—$5,000—not the ludicrous figure bid up by trolls.
“If I had $10,000 to offer, I gladly would,” Posey explained. “Unfortunately, the reality of my savings account is slightly less than half that.”
Posey said Zimmerman hasn’t reached out to him yet about his offer.
In his posting, the killer of Martin flaunts the gun as a valuable item tied to history.
“The firearm is fully functional as the attempts by the Department of Justice on behalf of B. Hussein Obama to render the firearm inoperable were thwarted by my phenomenal Defense Attorney,” Zimmerman writes in his post advertising the weapon for sale.
“I recognize the purchaser’s ownership and right to do with the firearm as they wish. The purchaser is guaranteed validity and authenticity of the firearm,” Zimmerman went on, adding that he will give a “portion of the proceeds” to fight Black Lives Matter “violence against Law Enforcement officers,” and fight the state’s attorney who prosecuted him, as well as Hillary Clinton.
“Now is your opportunity to own a piece of American History. Good Luck.”
The gun was originally listed on GunBroker.com, which eventually took it down after saying it wanted “no part in the listing on our website or in any of the publicity it is receiving.”
Posey doesn’t view this as an opportunistic chance to hold on to history, as Zimmerman would garishly like to present it. It’s about making sure that the gun can’t be used as a source of racial intimidation or harm.
“Luckily most violent racists don’t have two dollars to rub together,” Posey said. “Typically they’re losers in every aspect of life, not just socially. So there isn’t much threat of them being able to buy it for that, I believe. But I’m sure that there are many non-violent racists who would love to use this gun for propaganda, and who do have the money to buy it. And that's the real threat that we have to prevent.”