Skip to comments.Trayvon Martin shooting: George Zimmermanís fate now in juryís hands
Posted on 07/12/2013 12:42:37 PM PDT by Red Steel
The all-female jury will have to rely on the often-conflicting testimony from the 58 witnesses put on the stand during the two-week trial.
George Zimmerman's fate is in the hands of an all-female jury Friday after his defense team and prosecutors got their last licks in the racially charged case.
While only one of the jurors is a minority, five of them are moms.
Several of them looked uneasy when a photograph of slain 17-year-old Trayvon Martin flashed on a screen in the Florida courtroom.
There were no eyewitnesses to the struggle on Feb. 26, 2012 in an Orlando-area town house complex that ended with Martin dead from a bullet in his chest.
o the panel, which got its final instructions from Judge Debra Nelson, will have to rely on the often-conflicting testimony from the 58 witnesses prosecutors and defense attorneys put on the stand during the two-week trial.
Zimmerman is charged with second-degree murder and could get life in prison if he is convicted.
But Nelson, over the loud objections of Team Zimmerman, has also given the jury the option of convicting the 29-year-old neighborhood watchman of manslaughter.
A conviction on that charge could send Zimmerman to prison for up to 30 years.
Before the jury got the case, lawyers from both sides took them through the evidence again.
Zimmermans lead defense attorney, Mark OMara, went first. He said Zimmerman is not guilty of anything but protecting his own life.
Martin, he said, sowed the seeds of his own destruction.
We know he had the opportunity to go home, and he didn't do that, OMara said. The person who decided to make the night violent was the guy who didn't go home when he had the chance.
There were four minutes from the moment Zimmerman reported to a police dispatcher that Martin was running to the moment when a resident called 911 to report a fight in progress, OMara said.
To demonstrate that, OMara then said nothing for four minutes as Zimmerman nervously mopped his brow.
Four minutes, OMara told the jury. That felt like a long time. Four minutes to what? To walk home? To run home?
But Martin didnt do that, the lawyer said, adding that he circled back and attacked Zimmerman.
Prosecutors have not produced a shred of evidence in this bizarro case to show that Zimmerman had any other option but to shoot the teenager, OMara said.
OMara did not mention that Martin was black or that Zimmerman was part Hispanic.
Instead, OMara said there was no malice in Zimmermans voice when he first reported to a 911 dispatcher that a suspicious teenager was wandering through the development.
But OMara, in his argument, scrubbed the foul language Zimmerman used in the call when he told the dispatcher, F---ing punks ... These a--holes, they always get away."
Despite testimony from Zimmermans two criminal justice professors and a police officer from the Virginia department that turned down his employment application, OMara said he was not frustrated or a wannabe cop.
Zimmerman, he said, was an involved citizen.
OMara also deftly reminded the jury how the prosecutions star witness, 19-year-old Rachel Jeantel, undermined herself with embarrassing admissions about her lack of education on the stand. He said Jeantel never wanted to be involved in the case.
But OMara left out that Jeantel never wavered in her insistence that she was on the phone with Martin just before the shooting and said the doomed teenagers last words were, "Get off! Get off!"
Wrapping up his three-hour-plus spiel, OMara reminded the jury that its not illegal to follow a person.
OMara preceded prosecutor John Guy, who argued that Zimmerman lied over and over and over again about what happened.
If Zimmerman had listened when a police dispatcher told him it wasnt necessary to keep tailing Martin, none of us would be here, Guy said.
That child had every right to be afraid of a strange man following him, Guy said. And did that child not have the right to defend himself from that strange man?
Guy also waded into territory OMara avoided, stating flatly that this case is not about race; this is about right and wrong.
Then Guy left the jury something to think about: What if it was Trayvon Martin who shot and killed George Zimmerman? What would your verdict be?
Thats how you know its not about race.
On Thursday, prosecutor Bernie de la Rionda told the jury that the only thing Martin was guilty of was buying Skittles at a 7-Eleven.
The refusal by Sanford police and prosecutors to charge Zimmerman with a crime is the chief reason that the fatal shooting exploded into a national story.
African-Americans were especially outraged, citing this as a glaring example of unequal justice. President Obama weighed in saying, "If I had a son, he'd look like Trayvon."
Barraged with criticism, Florida Gov. Rick Scott, a Republican, appointed State Attorney Angela Corey to revisit the case and she decided there was evidence to charge Zimmerman.
In an interview after the shooting with Fox News Sean Hannity, Zimmerman explained what happened by saying, "I feel like it was all God's plan." He then apologized to Martin's parents and said he was not racist.
Trayvons angry dad, Tracy Martin, rejected Zimmerman's words.
There is no way that my God wanted George Zimmerman to murder my teenage son, he said.
What would be great is if they came back.. like right now.. and said Not guilty all the way down the line. Just a huge F U to the judge and everyone involved in this sham...but I doubt that will happen.
Zim should be not guilty, but I’m cynical.
A deal was struck.
He’ll be convicted of manslaughter and get a light sentence in a “country club” prison. In exchange he’ll get a taxpayer funded stipend in the 7 figures. Plus he gets book rights and protection when released.
Within 2 years he’ll be off the radar. Two years of his life for a couple of million tax free and guaranteed income and protection after release.
Either that or a hung jury and the circus continues before ending as I predict.
He should never have been charged but the masses must be distracted and amused.
If political prosecution had a father, it would look like Obama.
Plus he gets to sue CNN for a few million for posting his SS#.
I’m sure all the prospective looters have flat-screen TV’s in every room and vehicle...but, the problem is...most of them aren’t the new 3D TV’s!!!
I shudder to think what will happen to the Zimster if sent to a Florida prison. It’ll be a death sentence; he’ll have to seek out the protection of the Ayran Brotherhood.
Just wondering.....if a woman was on trial for murder and the jury consisted of 6 men, you can bet there would be a hue and outcry from the media saying she wasn’t being tried by a jury of her peers.
Unfortunately that is not the case. Manslaughter of a minor by using a firearm is 30 years in Florida. Chances are no one on the jury is aware of this.
Self defense rules out manslaughter, though.
Doesn’t mean we won’t get some convoluted wacky verdict...
and the animals are gathering outside the court house
I did not know that...is the 30 years mandatory? Could he be released early?
Twitter world is really heating up with the riot talk. When the not guilty verdict comes in stay out the Mall.
I think there will be an acquittal. How could anyone say the state has proven not self defense beyond a reasonable doubt? That chart says it all.
No wonder CNN ratings are up
There are a number of older people in this complex, and some know every car that belongs in here and we don't have any teenagers in here. One time, one young man tried to climb over our 8 ft, brick walls dividing our gardens in the back and an elderly woman saw him trying to climb a wall so she called the cops, then called the elderly woman next door to tell her the guy was climbing into her garden. This elderly woman went into her garden, grabbed the guy, marched him through her house through the front door and by that time, other elderly people had gathered outside to hold the person until the police got there which was just a short time. Our older men are likely all ex-military and they booted out two young men who tried to come in after Ike when our gate was open.
Zombies should stay away from older people, especially in Texas and when they are together in a number. They aren't going to put up with anyone disturbing their peace. “We don't want no zombies in here.” This just isn't a good place to try a heist. Better to go where a car can stop outside and the house is a separate house.
BTW, I don't know why Zimmerman's defenders don't start accusing Martin's sympathizers of racism against hispanics. The race card can be played both ways here.
No, the state couldn't touch him again. The family could sue him and perhaps Holder would try to get him but I read somewhere that Holder/Justice Dept. wouldn't.
I'd like to say that the Constitution protects GZ if he's acquitted. Unfortunately, we no longer follow the supreme law of the land. He will face federal charges, civil lawsuits, or both from now until the day he moves to a non-diverse area (northern Idaho?) or is murdered by someone who looks like Obama's son.
That poor man’s gut must be tied up in 100 knots.
Wasn’t it a Florida jury that acquitted Casey Anthony of murdering her daughter to go club hoping?
I don’t know the range of the sentencing guidelines, but given this judge’s conduct, rulings and attitude, I think she would gladly give the maximum.
How many hands did this Martin kid have???
He has one hand (at least) holding the can of Arizona Iced Tea he is slamming GZ with & he is punching GZ also presumably with the other hand. The attack mode of a punch down which the black punk community seems to think is very successful & fun.
WHAT HAND is holding the phone & using it to talk to the totally uneducated 17 (then) year old female who hates white people in all categories?
She made it perfectly clear that she had the instincts of a Mau Mau tribesperson in ANY dealings with whites.
I am bothered by the fact that ONLY 6 persons are being used in a case where the penalty could literally be life in prison.
Why NOT 12 persons?
I sat on an Assault & Battery case years ago in the jury, and we had 12 persons for that crime. We also convicted him.
I’m heading to the rap forums to incite a riot.
Floirida state law allows only six jurors in non-capital crimes.
This ordeal reminds me of an incident I experienced just before the 2012 elections. I was in my car going around to the homes of voters I had targeted as strong Republicans with get-out-the-vote literature. While I was trying to set my GPS navigator to a house I was having trouble finding, a car moved up behind me and stopped. I got out and the driver, a female, got out of her car. She asked me, “What are you doing in her neighborhood?” I told her that I was working for the Republican Party putting literature at doors in the neighborhood. I told her I was lost and needed to find a particular house. She told me about the large amound of break-ins and said that she did not trust people doing what I was doing. She moved on and, since it was getting late, I went home.
Did I walk over and say, “Hey ho, why are you bothering me?” And punch her in the nose?
No, and when I got home, I received a ringing of my door bell. It was the county sheriff and he wanted to follow up on a complaint about me acting in a suspicious manner in a neighborhood.
The people in the media are very smart. Within minutes of a story breaking, they know how to frame it so it fits in one of their agendas. They may be completely off track, but it doesn’t matter. Once one media outlet starts the ball rolling, the others pick it up, and before long the low-information a$$hole believes the story.
Whites didn’t riot when an obviously guilty double-murderer named OJ Simpson was acquitted. But then they were not looking for an excuse to steal and kill.
And there's the problem.
And despite getting off to a bad start with the knock-knock joke, I think Mara did a great job with respect to the forces that are arrayed against Zimmerman, especially the looney Rat judge.