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.

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

    Tracy Martin's first reaction to the taped voice was, "no, that's not my son." Today, or soon, we may hear one or both of Trayvon Martin's parents testify that the taped voice is indeed Trayvon's. How reliable is that testimony?

    July 5, 2013 at 8:10 am | Report abuse |
  2. Pete

    CNN ,your moderators stink and that's fact!!!Either quit deletting,blocking or get rid of these sites for blogging,can't have both in stopping our 1 st amendment rights!!

    July 5, 2013 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
  3. BOMBO

    And the prosecution rests. What a shambles that was. This thing should never have gone to trial. Most of the prosecution witnesses ended up helping the defense. The few that didn't just looked like idiots under cross. That includes the ME today, a supposed professional. My favourite exchange, after the ME said "I don't remember" about 50 times to questions about the autopsy he performed on Martin. Declared in resonse to one question "nobody knows as much about Trayvon's autopsy as me." to which defense lawyer West replied "really, you don't seem to remember anything about it."

    July 5, 2013 at 8:47 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Pete

    @flamespeak,a professor today said on the stand that Zimmerman was very well read in the SYG law and knew how to use this law to his benefit if needed getting an A in this peticular class..He explained as I've said to confront a person and upon starting a fight you find you're losing to a superior foe so thinking your life is endangered you take out a weapon in self defense and protect yourself by shooting the agressor and in killing him you kill any chance of any refuting of statements of yours made to cover yourself as Zimmerman has..This is in courts right now all over Florida and else where and this law first created by the NRA,ALEC and it should be repealed because in the wrong hands as Zimmermans he can use it to his advantage knowing it and legally walk away!!

    July 5, 2013 at 10:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • flamespeak

      Pete, The story presented by Zimmerman is clear cut self-defense. No avenue of escape, a physical attack with loss of life being a real possibility, attempts made to get help, and no other way out of the situation from Zimmerman's point of view. SYG laws have nothing to do with this scenario. You could argue about whether or not the laws should be on the book or not, but this isn't the case to argue about them with because SYG laws don't even come into play.

      July 6, 2013 at 1:49 am | Report abuse |
  5. BOMBO

    The judge has been doing her best to help the persecution. I hope she is removed from the bench.

    July 6, 2013 at 12:54 am | Report abuse |
  6. Tri Edge

    This whole trial is stupid and should not be on the news or least not be taking so much time.
    Email me about how the US needs to change.

    July 8, 2013 at 1:41 pm | Report abuse |
  7. phil warner

    Z is guilty. He takes a loaded pistol with no saftey to confront a 150 lb. kid. He follows for at app. 100 feet . He gets punched in the nose,wrestles a little bit and murders the kid. No guns for sissies and mommas boys. In my state we hgave a SYG law but no murder trials FLA is one big disaster full of right-wing white trash and jew-billies. I have been injured worse in fist fights in jr. high that Iwon.

    July 8, 2013 at 3:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • BOMBO

      Have fun at the riot Phil, along with the other closed minded dolts. But there is a trial going on that you might want to pay attention to.

      July 8, 2013 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
  8. BOMBO

    UPDATE The persecution rested last week. The defense basically already had it won based on reasonable doubt. So far this week, they are actually coming very close to PROVING INNOCENCE, which they don't need to do. Among today's developments, multiple witnesses swear GZ is screaming for help and one police officer says TM's father said it is NOT his son screaming. And when you think about it doesn't that make sense? Why would you be screaming for help if you are on top of the other guy, raining punches down. Of course it was GZ screaming.

    July 8, 2013 at 4:59 pm | Report abuse |
  9. BOMBO

    FURTHER UPDATE. The Judge has just reversed the pretrial ruling and is now allowing TM blood tox results. This is officially the most one sided criminal trial in history. How much worse can it get? The persecution should just drop charges now.

    July 8, 2013 at 5:18 pm | Report abuse |
  10. MMM in VA

    Finally, I am happy to hear more about T. Martin's drug use..hopefully this will lead to who he really was. Some of us are actually watching the minute by minute progress of the trial so it becomes quite annoying when I hear gorilla style tactics were used in asking questions of the father.who said it was not his son's voice.(.he changed up on that) SHE will get her name (sandy?) has lost all credibility as far as I am concerned. We heard today Zimmerman was pretty much a very weak man but was working on improving his body and life style but no match for an surprise assault this was confirmed by the gym owner. I think both defense and prosecution attorneys are doing a good job but the reporting by some leaves a lot to be desired. Slanting what is said to make it fit what you want the outcome to be is unacceptable especially by a news reporter. You need to digest all that is being said and decide then. So many have already decided who is or is not guilty a very sad human thing that I hope I or any one I am close to has to go through.

    July 8, 2013 at 5:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • phil warner

      Testimony from gym boy is not believable. How could you go to a gym for 20 months ,lose 60 to 80 lbs.and not be able to provide a defense against a 150 lb. boy?. How could georgie girl get to his gun if the boy was " straddling" him? The boys leg would be on top of the gun.

      July 9, 2013 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • Pete

      @Phil,yah lifting free weights,training for over 20 months in a gym and you can't bridge and push off a kid 150 lbs ,boy a lotta money wasted I think ...More on Zimmerman the liar than meets the eye too I think as well!!Just a wanne be cop at Trayvons expense aka Charlie Bronson,know him!!

      July 10, 2013 at 8:37 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©™

    How things change! Shortly after the shooting, there were reports that Trayvon Martin's father said, "that's not my son." Now we hear that he said then that he didn't know, but now it was his son's voice.
    Activists could have achieved much more by advertising real hate crimes that were actually motivated by racism, such as the outrageous murder of an African-American at Jackson, Mississippi, by white youths from Brandon.

    July 8, 2013 at 5:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • BOMBO

      With you on that JIF. There are plenty of cases we could focus on that show a racial bias in the system – but THIS is not one of them.

      July 9, 2013 at 12:47 am | Report abuse |
  12. MMM in VA

    I have heard so much ATTITUDE during the witness review don't need to read it here! If you have so many facts why don't you provide the neighborhood watch guidelines Mr. Zimmerman was working from. Also provide the documents that provide the information as to how the neighborhood watch program works in conjunction with having a permit to carry a gun. The next step is to decide how you would react if you were assaulted and being beaten... and what you would endure before you pulled the trigger. We have jurors who are judging ...do we need to?

    July 8, 2013 at 5:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • phil warner

      Hello, Do you know if there is any other neighborhood watch people? Ithink georgie girl is a one man show. Iremember him saying one of his neighbors didn`t lock his doors. He doesn`t seem to share Zfears.

      July 10, 2013 at 10:53 am | Report abuse |
  13. BOMBO

    Also on the subject of Martin's potential use of recreational pharmaceuticals, look up "purple drank." Might explain about the skittles and soda.

    July 9, 2013 at 12:45 am | Report abuse |
  14. Joey Isotta-Fraschini ©™

    Why didn't Dr. Rao, the medical examiner, establish for the prosecution that Mr. Zimmerman was on top of Mr. Martin during the scuffle? Did Special Prosecutor Angela Corey forget to tell Dr. Rao to state that?

    July 9, 2013 at 2:00 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Pete

    Mark O Mara, Zimmermans attorney says that Zimmerman no matter what will always look over his shoulder,boy is that a stupid statement or what..Zimmerman should've thought of that when dispatchers told him to stay put in his car and not track Trayvon down while being armed with a loaded gun and people out there don't say its nothing to do with that SYG law when its associated with selfdefense it most certainly does..The only difference the other victim,a minor that could of disputed Zimmermans lies is dead and Zimmerman made sure of it so his made up selfdefense story couldn't be as I said before repudiated...Wake up people Zimmermans guilty and if had stayed put as asked,not been armed with a loaded gun and had properly identified himself in confronting Trayvon none of this would of never happened but again isn't this about a guy in Zimmerman who was a failure in past attempts to be a police officer in Virginia and his way of not only getting recognision but get a job of his dreams as a police officer was at Trayvons expense .And believe me its been well orchastrated as well hasn't it if you add up the facts!!!

    July 10, 2013 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11