Elaine McClain and her husband, David McClain, of Sanford, Florida, were not expecting a journalist to drop by looking for George Zimmerman, the man who says he fatally shot an unarmed teenager in self-defense.
The death of Trayvon Martin has sparked strong reactions across the country, and those sentiments made their way to the unassuming McClains.
The next day, a letter arrived with this phrase written on the envelope in felt-tip pen: "Taste the rainbow."
That is the slogan for Skittles candy. When he was shot, Martin was carrying Skittles candy and a can of iced tea he had purchased from a nearby convenience store.
The letter was followed by a parade of reporters arriving at the McClains' home. Only then, Elaine McClain said, did she and her husband learn that director Spike Lee had retweeted a message to his 250,000 followers with the couple's address, identifying it as George Zimmerman's home.
The McClains have a son whose middle name is George and whose last name is Zimmerman, but he has no connection with the controversy.
Lee apologized on Twitter to the couple and asked people to leave them in peace, but the McClains want a more personal apology and a retraction.
"We would like him to apologize directly to us," David McClain told CNN.
Despite the initial apology, with hate mail arriving and strangers with microphones knocking on the door, the damage was done, the family said.
"As soon as we heard (about Lee's retweet), we knew we'd be in jeopardy and we had to go," Elaine McClain said.
They left their house for a hotel and have not been back for more than five minutes at a time since Tuesday.
"It's almost like we're the fugitives in this case, and we haven't done anything," Elaine McClain said.
The McClains have hired a lawyer to guide them but are not seeking financial gain from their troubles, David McClain said. He simply wants to get his life "back to a rational state," he said.
Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer who claims he killed in self-defense last month, lives more than 4 miles from the McClains. He is reported to be in hiding.
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