June 24th, 2013
01:45 AM ET

The Zimmerman trial: What you need to know

Opening statements begin Monday in the trial of George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch captain accused of fatally shooting 17-year-old Trayvon Martin on February 26, 2012, in Sanford, Florida.

Zimmerman is charged with second-degree murder. He says he shot the unarmed teen in self-defense.

A jury of six women will decide Zimmerman's fate, which has already drawn some scrutiny from the public about whether he will get a fair trial.

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Filed under: Crime • Justice • U.S.
soundoff (260 Responses)
  1. Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©™

    Well, it's over and Special Prosecutor Angela Corey has done herself proud.

    July 13, 2013 at 10:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • BOMBO

      Congrats JIF. You win the July 2013 sarcasm award. (Unless you were serious.)

      July 14, 2013 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Scott Denny

    Robert Zimmerman Jr.should not be harassed by this Larry King replacement.Send this guy back to England.Robert your a class guy and a good guy.congradulations to your brother.

    July 13, 2013 at 11:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • BOMBO

      He did awesome! Piers was on his heels. RZ Jr in 2016!

      July 14, 2013 at 1:56 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Blahblahblah

    Riots? Really? I'm going to start a riot the next time a black person does something bad to a white person. I'm sure I won't have to wait too long. One less degenerate hoodlum in the world in my opinion. R.I.P. Trey!

    July 14, 2013 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
  4. Ria Smith

    Why dont you guys want start the healing process, you are fueling this problem. We live in the United States of America, you are letting a group override our court system. This is wrong. But I see now you the media care nothing about both sides of the story, and all you care about is the rating. Shame on CNN New.

    July 14, 2013 at 11:56 am | Report abuse |
  5. Bill Kephart

    Legal analysts for CNN did a great job except for Sonny Hostin continually spewing her bias and the fact she found Zimmerman guilty before the evidence was even presented. Sonny equating this verdict as right there with the O.J. verdict was just plain stupid.

    July 14, 2013 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • BOMBO

      For my part I can't believe how many otherwise intelligent black observers just can't see the reality objectively in this case. It tells you something about the human mind. No, not just blacks. I've seen white people blinded by emotion against logic plenty of times too.

      July 14, 2013 at 1:54 pm | Report abuse |
  6. BOMBO

    The jury made the right decision, but show of hands – who still thinks it`s OK to LEGALLY allow an untrained, unregulated civilian to carry a gun. Because, that is still the biggest issue in this case and it`s too bad so few people realize it.

    July 14, 2013 at 1:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sheila

      If that boy was any color. Zimmerman should get put in jail. Nobody has the right to kill someone for no reason. He put his self in that. Trayvon and God knows what happen. That wasn't a trial, I don't know what that was. It is sad how the law and the justice is. That need to change that sh** . If that was your son would you want that man to be free, for something he shouldn't have done.

      July 14, 2013 at 6:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Portland tony

      Right on BOMBO........I don't object to folks owning cars, if you cant drive it, park it. As long as they can drive it responsibly, drive it. Same with gun owners..any idiot can own one, but .if you want to to carry one, you damned well better well be licensed, sane, responsible and know the consequences of its use.

      July 16, 2013 at 4:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • cindyb62

      The verdict was the wrong one for Zimmerman in this case, and he is not telling the truth at all because he murdered the the kid with that truth. Zimmerman racially profiled this kid based on his anger that had nothing to do with Trayvon and after murdering him came the lies. He instantly came up with this elaborated lie or lies because no one actually saw what he did to a kid whom was fighting for his life, Zimmerman didn't have to scream, he has a gun! Common sense this was a grown man chasing a kid, a man this kid didn't know nor did he know anyone in that area. Zimmerman knew what he was doing, it was on purpose that he didn't ID himself, after hanging up from the 911, it's clear that he continued to follow Trayvon because he was going to tell a lie when the cops got there anyway. This was not Trayvon's fault, it was Zimmerman's mission.

      July 16, 2013 at 5:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • nicole moreno

      What i dont entirelly understand is zimmermans self defense claim. His pictures show him with the bloody nose and the marks on the back of his head however no traces and as the dna specialist said in court NO TRACES of zimmermans blodd was found on tryvons sweater or beneath his fingernails that alone should have out ruled any self defense claim.

      July 16, 2013 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • BOMBO

      @nicole, wrong, DNA is unstable especially if evidence is not allowed to air dry. Any of Zimmerman's DNA would have degraded by the time testing was done, due to the fact that Martin's clothing was wet and sealed in plastic at the scene.

      July 17, 2013 at 12:36 am | Report abuse |
  7. dazzle ©

    A friend who was camping in Oakland last night reported helicopters and police all night long, the verdict this morning was rioting over this Florida verdict.

    July 14, 2013 at 2:14 pm | Report abuse |
  8. dave

    Why are the facts disregarded by naacp, media and supporters of Martin?
    Zimmerman clearly stated to police in initial call that he saw Martin "peering" into windows and an empty house while walking slowly in the rain!
    This is not racial profiling! Anyone in Zimmerman's position as neighborhood watch commander would have been remiss in their duty had they NOT followed up by calling authorities!

    July 14, 2013 at 2:31 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Sheila

    When was it okay for someone to follow you. If someone was following me, I would have defend myself just like Trayvon did. What give a person the right to follow you. I would have try to kick his butt. Zimmerman lied when he told his story. What he was saying don't even make sense. Why did he get out of the car after the police told him not to. When did a watchman get to have a gun. He was guilty as sin. Zimmerman should be sent to prison.

    July 14, 2013 at 5:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • flamespeak

      I can follow you right now, Shelia, and you are well within your rights to turn around and tell me stop or ask what I am doing. You are not within your rights to suddenly start hitting me and instead you have committed a crime. Following someone is not a crime.

      July 15, 2013 at 12:31 am | Report abuse |
    • John

      You're more than welcome to try.

      July 16, 2013 at 12:53 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Name*Cheryl

    Rachel told Mr morgan that she didnt know that Trayvon died until the next day.. Then look at her phone to see that she had been talking to him a minute before he died. But she told the court she heard Trayvon tell George to get off of him and the phone went dead. But didnt call the police..his parents????

    July 15, 2013 at 9:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Portland tony

      And I'm sure they( the police) would have responded. 911 doesn't prioritize calls from folks who's cells go dead without definitive information that there is an emergency! Besides she didn't know exactly what was going on anyway.

      July 16, 2013 at 3:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • BOMBO

      I can't wait for the civil case when she is proven to have lied on the stand. She said TM NEVER talked to her about fighting. But there are several text messages to her about fights TM had been in, from TM's phone. It wasn't admitted in the criminal trial because the judge was an idiot, but it will certainly be admitted in the civil case.

      July 17, 2013 at 12:40 am | Report abuse |
  11. BOMBO

    Also, Ben Kruidbos, the IT whistleblower who revealed the cell phone info that the persecution was hiding from Zimmerman's lawyers and was fired for it, is now suing the persecutors office. He'll get millions, especially considering they didn't keep the termination letter formal and private – they tried to destroy his reputation by inserting inflammatory language and releasing it to the press. It must be annoying to be a Florida taxpayer.

    July 17, 2013 at 12:45 am | Report abuse |
  12. Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©™

    Most Martin/Zimmerman discussion is irrational: facts are avoided. The trial and verdict were not based on a stand-your-ground law, but Stevie Wonder knows his audience and doesn't need to perform in Florida. I support stand-your-ground laws: my state (NY) should have one, but it probably never will.

    July 17, 2013 at 3:43 am | Report abuse |
  13. nicole

    Our government is only trying to to divide us as a nation if people don't realize this they will win.
    We need to stand united! Hold our ground and keep in mind the media lies about more then you could imagine and this could very well be a part of the presidents plans to declare Marshall law! Don't believe me look it up yourselfs.

    July 20, 2013 at 12:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • John

      I love you! Finally, someone else who realizes the true agenda.

      July 20, 2013 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
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