George Zimmerman Trial: Photos of Trayvon Martin's body shown to jurors

1:23 PM, Jun 25, 2013   |    comments
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Photo Gallery: Trayvon Martin crime scene and George Zimmerman injury photos

Photo Gallery: Florida teen Trayvon Martin killed by neighborhood watch volunteer
George Zimmerman listens during jury selection in Seminole circuit court on the fourth day of his trial, in Sanford, Fla., Thursday, June 13, 2013. Zimmerman has been charged with second-degree murder for the 2012 shooting death of Trayvon Martin. (AP Photo/Orlando Sentinel, Jacob Langston/Pool)

 

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Graphic pictures of Trayvon Martin's body were shown to jurors on Tuesday in the second-degree murder trial for former neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman, who is charged with shooting and killing 17-year-old Martin.

Prosecutors showed pictures of Martin's body at the crime scene as Martin's father, Tracy, left the courtroom. Martin's mother, Sybrina Fulton, looked away as pictures were shown of Martin's body lying face up in the grass. The jury had no visible reaction.

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The state showed the pictures from the night of the Feb. 2012 shooting during questioning their fourth witness-- Sanford Police Sgt. Anthony Raimondo Jr.

Raimondo responded to the shooting scene and found Martin face down with his hands underneath his body. Raimando said he attempted CPR with safety mask due to the extraordinary circumstance and attempted to seal Martin's bullet wound with a plastic bag.

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In cross-examination, Zimmerman attorney and former Local 6 legal analyst Mark O'Mara showed the pictures again and asked how long Martin's body was exposed to the rain before it was covered up. Raimondo estimated about 15 minutes.

Following Raimando's testimony, the state called Sanford Police Department crime scene technician Diane Smith.

State attorney John Guy questioned Smith about the conditions of the crime scene and the types of photographs she took at the scene.

Smith got up from the witness stand and showed jurors on a large poster board where items were found at the crime scene with evidence markers. Pictures from the crime scene were shown correlating to the markers on the board.

For their first witness on Tuesday, the state recalled Ramona Rumph, the Seminole County Communication Deputy Director, to authenticate the non-emergency call Zimmerman made the night of the shooting. She was called on Monday afternoon to discuss the previously made 911 calls Zimmerman made before the defense objected to having the jury listen to them and court recessed for the day.

The state's second witness was Wendy Dorival, accreditation manager of Sanford Police Department and Neighborhood Watch coordinator. Dorival had previously met with Zimmerman and the homeowner's association president regarding setting up a Neighborhood Watch program at the Retreat at Twin Lakes neighborhood.

Dorival was questioned about the program by Guy, who asked what they tell program participants about following people.

"We say 'don't do that'" Dorival said, adding that she tells program participants that it's the "job of law enforcement."

Dorival said Zimmerman told her his HOA asked him to be the Neighborhood Watch program coordinator. She said she tells program participants they are the "eyes and ears" and an "extension of law enforcement." Dorival said she tells volunteers they are "not the vigilante police," but not that they cannot defend themselves if attacked or carry a gun.

Dorival was cross-examined by defense attorney Don West, who asked her about the program presentation. Dorival said in Zimmerman's neighborhood was dealing with a "several burglaries" and had a good turnout at the meeting. Residents were concerned about the perimeter of property and inadequate lighting on the property, according to Dorival.

Dorival said Zimmerman "seemed like he wanted to make changes to his community to make it better."

West then discussed the email exchange between Zimmerman and Sanford police about the program, to which the state objected, calling it hearsay. Nelson ruled against the defense to keep the email out of evidence.

The state's third witness on Tuesday was Donald O'Brian, the homeowners association president in Zimmerman's neighborhood.

"George went to the police, he got this whole thing started, it was his program," O'Brian said when questioned by state attorney Richard Mantei. O'Brian said no one else wanted to be Neighborhood Watch coordinator, just Zimmerman, who volunteered to enforce parking rules.

O'Brian said the Neighborhood Watch program is separate from the HOA. He said there was a burglary suspect arrested a couple of months before the shooting after workers called 911. O'Brian informed Zimmerman by text message. In cross-examination, the defense asked O'Brian what the suspect description was, to which he answered a 17-18-year-old man who the workers followed to the suspect's home before calling police.
During state redirect, O'Brian said the Neighborhood Watch rule is "don't get close to anybody, stay at a safe distance and call 911."

Earlier Tuesday, prosecutors tried to introduce recordings of previous non-emergency calls he made to law enforcement to prove the former neighborhood watch leader is guilty of murder in the shooting death of Martin.

Mantei tried to convince Judge Debra Nelson in a hearing that a series of calls Zimmerman made to authorities about suspicious people in his Sanford neighborhood in the months before the shooting indicate his state of mind that night.

Mantei started his argument with the relevance the calls serve, saying it proves element of crime--depraved mind. The state said prior calls help disprove self-defense, showing an ongoing build-up of frustration by Zimmerman.

The state said motive and state of mind are classic jury questions. Mantei said the police did question "suspicious" persons in two of Zimmerman's prior calls and searched the suspicious persons' names for warrants but found none, so they were let go.

Zimmerman's attorney, former Local 6 legal analyst Mark O'Mara, argued that the state is trying to bring in circumstantial evidence and that the state has little or no evidence to support second-degree murder. O'Mara said the state is trying to get prior calls in trial to show ill will, hatred.

 

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