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Zimmerman Update Exclusive — Mid-Day 7 — Serino more ambivalent, Osterman supports self-defense

Zimmerman Update Exclusive — Mid-Day 7 — Serino more ambivalent, Osterman supports self-defense

Motion to Strike Key Serino Testimony Most Damaging to State

The Court opened today with a request from Prosecutor Bernie de la Rionda, before the jury was present, to ask Judge Nelson to strike perhaps the most telling blow from yesterday’s testimony from former Investigator Chris Serino. You can see our analysis of that testimony from yesterday here:

Zimmerman Trial Day 6 – Analysis & Video – State’s witness Chris Serino seriously undermines charge

I say “former Investigator” because it turns out that although Chris Serino remains with the Sanford Police Department he was demoted from Investigatory to Partrolman a few months after the shooting for the apparent reason that he was willing to support a charge of manslaughter but not second degree murder: see here for details:

Zimmerman Update — Investigator Chris Serino Demoted to Patrolman by Superiors

BDLR argued that when O’Mara asked Serino if he believed Zimmerman to be telling the truth, Serino responded that he did, that such a testament of a law enforcement officer of a defendant was inappropriate and must be struck. He “ambushed” the defense with a detailed motion the State’s office had presumably spent much of the night preparing, and Judge Nelson required the defense to evaluate and respond to the motion while standing in court. O’Mara did the best he could under the circumstances, but Nelson elected to side with the State. When the jury was brought into the courtroom she played the audio of that part of O’Mara’s cross, and instructed the jury that the evidence was struck and not to be considered by them.

Frankly, it seems to this observer is that all that was accomplished by this maneuver is that after hearing the statement as the last thing before being sequestered for the night and having a chance to sleep on it, the jury heard it again first thing in the morning to set the tone for the day ahead. It struck me as an odd maneuver, and odd timing of the maneuver, by the State (but then so much of the State’s case has).

Former Investigator (now Patrolman) Chris Serino, Sanford Police Department

On the stand today Serino seemed notably more ambivalent in his testimony in the sense that he appeared to be making an effort to provide both the State and the defense with information useful to them in answering their questions. He was agreeable with BDLR’s suggestions that the use of phrases like “[email protected] punks” and “those @ssholes” suggested ill-will, hatred, spite, the conditions for a “depraved mind.” On the other hand, when questioned by O’Mara he was asked if Zimmerman had barked out the words as BDLR had done on direct, and Serino replied he had not. When asked his perception of when he heard Zimmerman speak the words Serino replied they seemed to convey a sense of frustration.

Former Investigator Chris Serino, Sanford Police Department, Part 2

Former Investigator Chris Serino, Sanford Police Department, Part 3

Former Investigator Chris Serino, Sanford Police Department, Part 4

Former Investigator Chris Serino, Sanford Police Department, Part 5

In the end, Serino’s testimony today was ambivalent between the State and defense, as opposed to strongly in favor of the defense yesterday. Nevertheless, ambivalent testimony from a State witness is a clear win for the defense, given the State’s need to meet its burden of persuasion beyond a reasonable doubt.

Mark Osterman, Federal Air Marshall, State Witness & Zimmerman “Best-Friend”

After Serino the next State witness was Mark Osterman, a Federal Air Marshall, and self-described best friend of George Zimmerman. Osterman had written a book recounting his knowledge of the events, much of it based on his personal conversations with George in the days immediately following the shooting.

Hearing Osterman testify was extremely surreal. It was almost like having Zimmerman himself on the stand, except without the opportunity for the State to cross-examine the actual defendant. Osterman’s testimony was 100% consistent with Zimmerman’s own recounting.

Mark Osterman, Federal Air Marshall, Part 2

Mark Osterman, Federal Air Marshall, Part 3

The only portion that might arguably have favored the State’s position is that Osterman recounted in his book that Zimmerman had told him he had moved Martin’s “hands” away from his body. Martin’s hands were photographed under his body in photos taken on the scene, and BDLR may feel he’s (finally) identified an inconsistency in Zimmerman’s recounting. In fact, it is my recollection that Zimmerman’s statement was that he moved Martin’s “arms” away from his body. He could well have put his hands on Martin’s elbows and pushed them away from Martin’s body, thus moving his “arms” away but not his hands.

If that WAS BLDR’s goal, he spent a great deal of time getting there, all the while replaying Zimmerman’s narrative of self-defense. It simply didn’t strike me as any way for the State to advance substantive closer to their goal of proof of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

OK, court is back in session. More to follow in the end-of-day wrap-up.


Andrew F. Branca is an MA lawyer and author of the seminal book “The Law of Self Defense,” now available in its just released 2nd Edition, which shows you how to successfully fight the 20-to-life legal battle everyone faces after defending themselves. UPDATE: July 5, 2013 is the LAST DAY to take advantage of the 30% pre-order discount, only $35, plus free shipping. To do so simply visit the Law of Self Defense blog.

BREAKING: “The Law of Self Defense, 2nd Edition” is now also being carried by, at list price but with a commitment for 2-day delivery.  A Kindle version to come within a week or so (I hope).

Many thanks to Professor Jacobson for the invitation to guest-blog on the Zimmerman trial here on Legal Insurrection!

You can follow Andrew on Twitter on @LawSelfDefense (or @LawSelfDefense2 if I’m in Twitmo, follow both!)on Facebook, and at his blog, The Law of Self Defense.


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I read some months ago the George Zimmerman was given a lie detector test by the police, and that he passed.

1. Do we know if that is true?

2. If it is, could this be brought in as evidence for the defense, or are polygraphs always excluded from trials, even when they benefit the defendant?

    myiq2xu in reply to fogflyer. | July 2, 2013 at 3:26 pm

    Any sociopath or hardened criminal can pass a lie detector test. They aren’t scientific. The police use them as a screening/interrogation tool because if the subject believes that the polygraph really works the cops can use that belief to elicit a confession.

    One trick to beat a polygraph is to put a tack in your shoe under your toe. Press down on it during the questions and focus on the pain. That keeps your involuntary nervous system from reacting to the questions. Keeping your butt cheeks clenched also works.

    Don’t ask me how I know this.

      Ragspierre in reply to myiq2xu. | July 3, 2013 at 6:39 am

      For extra confidence, you have tacks between your butt-cheeks.

      But that is CIA level stuff…

    GumBoocho in reply to fogflyer. | July 2, 2013 at 9:36 pm

    I don’t understand the relevancy of moving the hands away from the body and the hands later under the body. I can’t see any motive for Zim making up a story about moving TM’s hands. The mystery as to how TM’s hands got under his body is a mystery, but irrelevant. The main explanation I can think of is that TM moved his hands after Zim moved them. I can also understand that Zim may be confused at this point. But so what?

    GumBoocho in reply to fogflyer. | July 2, 2013 at 9:50 pm

    If I were on the jury, & the judge came out with this ruling so long after, I would thumb my mental nose at the judge. But IMHO, this trial is a circus in which witnesses do not keep to what they saw & heard. Witnesses should not be giving opinions, speculating, telling how they feel about this & that. But the lawyers are asking for this stuff with little objection, & the judge is allowing it. To me all this garbage would be grounds for mistrial if Zim is convicted

Ain’t that Judge cute? Don’t worry sweetie when you take off your bra at night, all that loose skin and those wrinkles will come out, just fine. Your floor may take a beating though..

Will BDLR be calling George’s mother to testify as a character witness next?

    obamabinlyin in reply to myiq2xu. | July 2, 2013 at 6:08 pm

    With the way the prosecution has handled the case so far it would almost follow Zimmerman’s Mother would be on the witness list!

    JoAnne in reply to gwest. | July 2, 2013 at 2:19 pm

    Is that a real grand jury indictment? I’m confused by the website of the Citizen’s Grand Jury. (Pardon my ignorance in advance)!

      gwest in reply to JoAnne. | July 2, 2013 at 2:28 pm

      JoAnne, I’m confused by it too – I’m hoping one of the legally-literate here can tell us if it means anything or not…

    Ragspierre in reply to gwest. | July 2, 2013 at 2:38 pm

    Yeah, no. That is nutter stuff.

    MegK in reply to gwest. | July 2, 2013 at 3:12 pm

    Sounds like just a random group of people who got together and decided to call themselves a “citizens grand jury”.

    stevewhitemd in reply to gwest. | July 2, 2013 at 3:14 pm

    No, it’s not real, it’s just another website.

    With loud music.

    And a point of view that they’re entitled to have, but is a little .. extreme.

    They are NOT a recognized, state-constituted grand jury. They’re something else.

    Milhouse in reply to gwest. | July 2, 2013 at 3:53 pm

    There is no such thing as a “citizens’ grand jury”. Klayman is a nut.

The state isn’t trying to prove guilt, they are only providing any weak-kneed jurors the ammunition to scuttle an obvious acquittal. That’s the purpose of striking Serino’s comment. I can just hear the jurors already…”but we can’t use that”.

It’s Rules for Radical Lawyers. If the law, facts, and common sense don’t work for you, make sure that you feed jurors the justifications they can regurgitate to ignore them.

    serfer1962 in reply to donmc. | July 2, 2013 at 5:31 pm

    A conviction requires all the jurors to agree to the conviction.
    If at least one descents then is it
    Hung jury?

Humphreys Executor | July 2, 2013 at 2:21 pm

By graciously putting all of GZ’s various statements and accounts of that night into evidence, is it possible the State is going to argue that GZ’s accounts are too consistent, that his story is too rehearsed and memorized to be believable? Just spit-balling here.

The Judge doesn’t seem very bright. Am I wrong?

    Ragspierre in reply to raven. | July 2, 2013 at 2:37 pm

    Yeah. What are you basing that on?

      myiq2xu in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2013 at 3:10 pm

      What do you call a lawyer that graduated at the bottom of their law school class?

      “Your Honor”

        cazinger in reply to myiq2xu. | July 2, 2013 at 5:10 pm

        The dean at my old school used to say that he would:

        Call the “A” students “Professor”,

        Call the “B” students “Your Honor”, and

        Call the “C” students for donations to the school, because these were the students that wound up making the $$$.

      Goetz von Berlichingen in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2013 at 3:47 pm

      Well, for one thing: her hairstyle.

Judge Nelson will be played by Gerard Depardieu in the movie verson of events.

As far as Martin’s arms being under his body, it is very possible that Martin moved them there himself before he died. He thought Martin was still alive because he had been talking. Martin could have moved his arms instinctively to where the pain was while Zimmerman and Manalo were talking. Someone commented during this trial (a witness I thought) that it was possible for the body to move up to 90 seconds after the heart stops.

    healthguyfsu in reply to gasper. | July 2, 2013 at 3:10 pm

    That’s a fallacy…it is possible for the muscle and heart to beat up to 90 seconds after death due to randomized calcium fluxes.

    Also, the body does not move in a directed fashion during these spasmodic fluxes.

    However, the fact that Martin was still alive after being on the ground for a few minutes is a more plausible explanation and certainly corroborated by the CPR attempts and apparent shock of Zimmerman that his assailant was dead when informed by police.

    MegK in reply to gasper. | July 2, 2013 at 3:17 pm

    I am sure there is probably a scientist who could testify to this, but from what I understand you don’t die instantaneously from having your heart stop. After all, your brain and nerve impulses are still working and that’s what moves your extremities.

      healthguyfsu in reply to MegK. | July 2, 2013 at 3:40 pm

      I am a neuroscientist who specializes in CNS control of cardiovascular function…it can work either way.

      When both are intact, I’d say the brain tends to stop much faster than the heart. Both are pretty quick but the brain fatigues very quickly and the heart can keep beating due to random calcium flux and stored glycogen and oxygen in the muscle itself. Further, just because the brain is still firing doesn’t mean it can move muscles that are out of oxygen and ATP.

      In Trayvon’s case, my understanding is that the lung went first but that the heart was compromised by the bullet’s landing. Understand though that I am a research physiologist and not a trauma specialist. The loss of oxygen would lead to decline of both the heart and brain but both can work briefly in the absence of oxygen. The heart can still beat when it has a hole but it will lose blood into the surrounding pericardial sac, eventually filling up and reducing contraction. Further, the bleed will reduce the amount of blood returning to the heart with each subsequent cycle.

        Irate Scientist in reply to healthguyfsu. | July 2, 2013 at 8:08 pm

        While it is certainly true that there comes a point when no motion is possible other than rigor mortis, I don’t see any particular reason to suppose that Martin had reached that point when Zimmerman moved his arms.

      gasper in reply to MegK. | July 2, 2013 at 3:41 pm

      One of the witnesses made a statement to that affect. And, as the previous commenter noted: most likely he was not dead. For the previous commenter: I did not say his heart was beating for 90 seconds after death, after all, it was, then it would not be “death” would it?

        healthguyfsu in reply to gasper. | July 2, 2013 at 3:56 pm

        Depends…how do you define death? No brain wave activity, no heart beat, not breathing, etc.

        Some combo of the above?

      Wolverine in reply to MegK. | July 2, 2013 at 3:41 pm

      As a general rule, yes, the various systems take time to die. This is in addition to generally taking a minute or two to bleed out from a puncture wound to the heart like Martin received.

      If, or more likely when, an expert is called to testify, they will likely say that “it depends” with no definitive way to tell if Martin could have retracted his hands to his chest 30 seconds after being shot.

    Bettijo in reply to gasper. | July 2, 2013 at 4:55 pm

    I had thought that too. It is a natural response to move your hands where the pain in

Now they have a medical examiner testifying that GZ wasn’t badly injured. But she never examined him, she’s going by photographs.


    Ragspierre in reply to myiq2xu. | July 2, 2013 at 2:41 pm

    She’s obviously a paid hack. The jury won’t invest much in anything she says.

    O’Mara is letting her run, which is a mistake. He should be objecting to her non-responsive answers. If for nothing else, to preserve the record.

      fogflyer in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2013 at 2:54 pm

      Yeah, a Corey appointee.
      I was kind of surprised when she said she really didn’t know much about physics. Wouldn’t that be kind of important in evaluating homicides? How injuries might have occurred? Am I watching too much CSI? (full disclosure- I have never watched CSI)

        healthguyfsu in reply to fogflyer. | July 2, 2013 at 3:13 pm

        Physics are a key part of physiology which any medical professional worth his or her salt would know about. If she doesn’t know much about physics, then she isn’t worth her salt and probably doesn’t realize how much physical laws and formulas play into living systems.

          kentuckyliz in reply to healthguyfsu. | July 2, 2013 at 4:37 pm

          Maybe that’s why she is a medical examiner…they don’t trust her around live people. Like that disaster idiot medical student on Scrubs.

      ThomasD in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2013 at 3:58 pm

      Tough call, if you go at her too hard you could give the jury the impression that the extent of GZ’s injuries really do matter.

      When common sense says they don’t.

      Why would Zimmerman, if his intent was to kill and being armed as he was, engage in a fistfight with TM, such that he sustained any injury?


      How did Zimmerman receive such injuries yet manage to strike Martin with one bullet, traveling in an upward and front to back trajectory through his chest, if not while flat on his back?

      Rather than arguing extent of injuries, perhaps it is best to simply highlight that the State acknowledges Martin did inflict multiple visible injuries upon Zimmerman.

      creeper in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2013 at 6:52 pm

      Rags, could MOM be letting her run because her testimony is so obviously contradicted by the photos? “This witness is so far off base I’m not even going to bother to object.” Maybe he figures this is one way to demonstrate how utterly without substance the prosecution’s case is.

      Don’t think I phrased this well but hope you understand what I’m driving at.

        Ragspierre in reply to creeper. | July 2, 2013 at 7:20 pm

        No, but there are lawyer who just don’t try to control witnesses.

        Experts or others who are experienced testifiers can be AWFUL. You can imagine how bad a COURT ORDERED EXPERT is.

        My thinking is that you have to keep them on the rails, whoever they are. So, you develop tricks. “I understand you didn’t want to answer that last question, so let me ask another on the same issue”, signals to the jury what is going on, and gets you back to the point.

          creeper in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2013 at 8:50 pm

          Thank you. This would seem to be one of the very few areas where O’Mara has missed the mark. Perhaps it’s just a minor one.

    Humphreys Executor in reply to myiq2xu. | July 2, 2013 at 2:48 pm

    What does a closed head injury look like from a photo of one’s face?

      CoastalZooKeeper in reply to Humphreys Executor. | July 2, 2013 at 3:24 pm

      It looks like nothing at all. Seen lots of CHIs where there are literally no outside signs of trauma, but there’s a bleed in the brain, or based on witnesses there was obviously a concussive event.

        Duke Powell in reply to CoastalZooKeeper. | July 2, 2013 at 4:21 pm

        Exactly correct. The question to the medical examiner should have been, “Can you say with 100% certainty that Zimmerman did not sustain a concussion?”

        She cannot truthfully say yes to that question.

        While it MAY be true that Zimmerman’s injuries were insignificant. At the time of the incident, they were POTENTIALLY significant.

        The hematomas on Zimmermans scalp could indicate a closed head trauma. He may have sustained a mild concussion from the beating and may explain his “strange” affect immediately following the incident.

        Testimony was heard that Zimmerman was seen at a local clinic. I’ll bet you he was given discharge instructions on the signs and symptoms of a concussion and what to do if they arose.

        As an aside. Im a paramedic with a whole lot of experience. I always thought the medics on the scene screwed up by not pressuring Zimmerman to consent to transport.

        I bet he and his lawyers wish now that he had gotten an Emergency Room evalution.

          This is an excellent response in my view.

          As one who has experienced concussion, and has experienced head injuries, had a child who had an injury on the back of his head (his fault, trust me), I have some experience in the matter.

          The descriptions that I have read about George after the event do in fact match with concussion. The fact that he was feeling dizzy alone is evidence that he suffered concussion.

          George had hematomas on the back of his head and he is lucky that they dissolved. He should have been sent for an x-ray of his head because there could have been some nasty stuff going on.

          When my son jumped backwards from his father’s shoulders and hit his head, we took him to the emergency department of the hospital. They did an x-ray and then they cut open the hematoma that had formed. Just saying, that is what I would have expected. It is a pity that George refused to get that kind of help.

        Granny55 in reply to CoastalZooKeeper. | July 2, 2013 at 6:09 pm

        My Aunt Joan hit her head on a corner beam walking up her basement steps. She walked around for 3 days, seemingly fine. Her neighbor found her unresponsive, laying on the kitchen floor. She had a blood clot that burst from taking that hit on the head. Luckily she survived – but just barely. So, yes, closed head injuries do not always present symptoms right away.

    rokiloki in reply to myiq2xu. | July 2, 2013 at 2:52 pm

    Still, the law of self defense doesn’t require one to experience the injury. They only have to have reason fear of being seriously injured or killed.

    If someone was hitting my head against cement, I would fear serious injury or death. People have died from head trauma after being hit only once or twice.

Carol Herman | July 2, 2013 at 2:48 pm

Even if the judge strikes “Sgt. Friday’s” (DRAGNET performance as a witness) … the Judge IS NOT ALLOWED into the jury room. Once the case passes to the jurors they are allowed to proceed ANY. WHICH. WAY. THEY. LIKE.

The Jurors can also ask each other if they’re menopausal. And, if they are do they take horemones? And, they could declare “they don’t want a foreman who is on the rag.”

You will never know! Jury deliberations are private. And, while notes go out to the judge. Those notes are read in OPEN court. And, Both sets of attorneys are present.

What can the jurors do? I have no idea! And, as it is in the future, nobody knows. However, if I could give O’Mara penalty strokes, I would. He consumes the clock like nobody’s business! To make one or two points. Without so much “make believe,” and “in another universe.”

These jurors are sequestered. They’ll form their own opinionS of the judge. Let alone the books that can be written, ahead.

The prosecutors have a list of 200 witnesses! We can still be watching this trial come Christmas. With the only blessing being that judges don’t want cases to drag beyond Christmas!

Now, of the six. And, 4 alternates. We know one alternate fell out. Depending on the length of this trial, how many others can find reasons to quit? If your hemorrhoids act up, would that count?

(I remember Gerry Spence. I remember how it was easy to focus on him while he was in the courtroom. And, how his approach was so soft. “Why, heck, I’m just a country lawyah.”

    myiq2xu in reply to Carol Herman. | July 2, 2013 at 3:16 pm

    More than a few Ivy League lawyers found out the hard way that Spence was no dummy.

    I always figured that Ben Matlock was based on Spence.

    Carol, are you the Carol Herman from Althouse? The one who opined about “Rickey Branch”?

    gravytop in reply to Carol Herman. | July 2, 2013 at 6:10 pm

    That’s not quite right. Juror misconduct during deliberations is possible. Doing experiments, or outside research can reverse a verdict after the fact. If one of the jurors intimidates another one, and this comes out after deliberations, reversal of verdict is possible. Arguably, if one juror is loudly complaining that another juror is on the rag (or is the wrong race) this might rise to the level of intimidation. I certainly wouldn’t rule it out altogether.

I have no sympathy whatsoever for the State in this farce of a show trial. That having been said it is unclear if Serino was demoted for not going after Zimmerman hard enough. I was so troubled by that claim (a man’s career and livelihood suffered in the unholy quest to punish Zimmerman!?!) that I followed the links and they do not appear to support “for the apparent reason that he was willing to support a charge of manslaughter but not second degree murder”. In fact it seems Serino was one of the first who wanted to go after Zimmerman when the police chief(!) did not think there was enough evidence to charge him.

I also think Nelson’s rulings in this trial look pretty bad. “Please strike from the record what one of my witnesses said because it doesn’t help our case”. Ridiculing her appearance however is not a worthy criticism.

    rokiloki in reply to rick67. | July 2, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    I think seeing the prosecutor requesting testimony of his own witness being struck from the record would be more damaging to his case than just leaving it in the record.

    As a juror, I might accept the statement or not, depending on if I believed the witness. But a prosecutor discrediting his own witness would make me question his whole case.

      avwh in reply to rokiloki. | July 2, 2013 at 3:17 pm

      Exactly – it would HIGHLIGHT the testimony for me if I were a juror: “oh, the STATE witness said something that’s SO bad for their case, the next day, the prosecution wants it STRUCK from the record? Let me focus on that – must be damned important.”

      Estragon in reply to rokiloki. | July 2, 2013 at 3:22 pm

      Since the jury got to hear Zimmerman interviewed on tape themselves, redacting that single comment by Serino is unlikely to change their impression.

    snopercod in reply to rick67. | July 2, 2013 at 3:56 pm

    “Ridiculing her appearance however is not a worthy criticism.” So please, people, no comments about “when the fat lady sings”.

    JackRussellTerrierist in reply to rick67. | July 2, 2013 at 6:56 pm

    “Ridiculing her appearance however is not a worthy criticism.”

    …..especially when there is so much more and better material in her rulings to criticize her about!

Humphreys Executor | July 2, 2013 at 2:55 pm

LOL, I knew it, the State called a phrenology expert to analyze the bumps on GZ’s head! This is too much.

My God, this Medical Examiner is SO obnoxious!
I think she is pissing me off more than Dee Dee did!
Just answer the freakin’ question without trying to twist it your way! So biased! I am sure the jury will feel that way too.

    Bettijo in reply to fogflyer. | July 2, 2013 at 5:15 pm

    “JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Action News has uncovered some major allegations inside the Medical Examiners Office.

    They all center on Dr. Valerie Rao. She was appointed by the governor in 2011. But in a letter we obtained from the Mayor’s Office to the state Medical Examiners Commission, the city claims employees have seen Rao using the autopsy sink to wash her feet, use her bare hands to perform procedures, even demand unnecessary autopsies to raise the bottom line.

    The accusations don’t stop there.” WTEV

Hypothetical scenario–What if Trayvon Martin (TM) had killed George Zimmerman (GZ).Assuming all the other facts are the same–Would TM be justifying in claiming self defense stating that he was afraid of his life cause he saw that GZ had a pistol?

    Goetz von Berlichingen in reply to dawadu. | July 2, 2013 at 3:41 pm

    What do you mean, “saw the pistol”?
    It is established in FL state case law that “seeing” that some is in possession of a weapon is NOT grounds for self-defense.
    Brandishing and/or threatening with a weapon go beyond mere possession and would be grounds for such a claim.

    Bear in mind, IANAL. But I did re-read Andrew Branca last night.

    Hey Andrew, any states still allow BAR admittance to people who “read for the law”, like Lincoln did?
    I ask only rhetorically. If I can’t research that, I haven’t a chance!

    Immolate in reply to dawadu. | July 2, 2013 at 4:15 pm

    A car is a at least as deadly a weapon as a firearm. However, sitting in one is not a deadly threat.

    cazinger in reply to dawadu. | July 2, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    I don’t know if he would be “justified” in claiming self-defense, but as far as finding him guilty of manslaughter (I assume that he would not be charged with murder 2, as there seems to be a consensus that that was overcharging), I would assume the same rules would apply. If he were to claim that GZ started a physical altercation, and that in that altercation, he feared for his life, either because he saw GZ going for his weapon or otherwise, then it would be up to the prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that he didn’t act in self-defense. Frankly, given this scenario, I don’t think the state would win that case either.

    To me that has more to do with the burden of proof than anything else. In the conflict between TM and GZ, it might not be possible to identify either of them as the aggressor beyond a reasonable doubt. However change your scenario just a little bit, and say they both survive. Now they are suing each other in civil court, each claiming the other started the physical altercation and each suing for damages. At that point the burden of proof becomes “a preponderance of the evidence”.

Duke Powell | July 2, 2013 at 3:10 pm

By way of introduction, I am a paramedic at a busy urban Level One Trauma Center and have worked there for 33 years. I have seen more than my share of trauma – and people shot in the heart.

I have seen people shot in the heart die almost immediately and have seen people shot in the heart walk out of the hospital. The fact that Martin did not die immediately and was talking and moving about after being shot is not surprising.

The supposed inconsistency in that Zimmerman states he was holding Martin’s arms out and that post-mortem pictures shows Martins hands underneath him means nothing. He may have simply rolled over.

I am also watching the Miami medical examiner testimony. She is really a piece of work and a knowledgable medical expert could tear her testimony apart. Hell, I could.

I comment on it later on this site.

    Narniaman in reply to Duke Powell. | July 2, 2013 at 3:39 pm

    Commenting as a surgeon, I agree 100% with Duke Powell’s observations.

    I would also be very surprised if the paramedics, while attempting CPR, didn’t move his arms if for no other reason then to try to start an IV while someone else was pumping on his chest. I would think it would be very unusual for someone to have their hands underneath them after CPR without the hands being repositioned prior to the postmortem pictures.

      kentuckyliz in reply to Narniaman. | July 2, 2013 at 5:23 pm

      Some of the jurors are nurses–wondering if any had ER or ICU experience and might know this from their own professional experience.

      MegK in reply to Narniaman. | July 2, 2013 at 5:37 pm

      I believe the photo in question was taken by the neighbor Manalo before any paramedics arrived. The first police officer on the scene has already testified that he rolled Trayvon over and started performing CPR on him.

Everyone remotely connected with this prosecution – from Obama to Scott, Bondi, Corey, BDLR, and Nelson – should be exiled to Cuba.

iconotastic | July 2, 2013 at 3:36 pm

If Zimmerman is acquitted is he still liable to be sued by Martin’s parents for wrongful death? Or does Florida, like Washington state, prevent that in self-defense cases?

Anyone know Florida law on that topic? Martin’s parents have already weaseled money out of the HOA so I’ll bet they have their eye on any money Zimmerman might get from CNN,NCB, ABC, and the State of Florida.

    iconotastic in reply to iconotastic. | July 2, 2013 at 4:13 pm

    heh. Found this discussion of Florida self-defense law and protection from civil suit:

    And, as usual when reading about a topic that you haven’t much expertise in, I am now more confused than before.

    Easier to program in Java than in English, that is for certain.

      fogflyer in reply to iconotastic. | July 2, 2013 at 7:14 pm

      I don’t know what the law is, but I highly doubt he will be sued civilly.
      Zimmerman doesn’t have OJ money, so I doubt there will be any attorneys jumping to try that case.

    Uncle Samuel in reply to iconotastic. | July 2, 2013 at 5:19 pm

    The Martins better do like Brer Fox and lay low. They may be sued for participating in the Crump slander, libel, character assassination against Zimmerman and making the case a racial matter, inflaming prejudice and putting Zimmerman’s life in danger. Hope the $#%*&! New Black Panther Party and ‘Rev’ Sharpton and Obama get into some serious heat as well.

    This is America and we Americans and will not tolerate such CR*P from anyone of any color or race.

    It’s time for character and actions, not color to be our guide. No more affirmative action and no more excuses about behavior. Do the crime, do the time.

      This may be the civil rights trial of the century. But for the exact opposite reasons the family, lawyers, media, state, and reverends first thought! We can wish…

One, did he say the Stand Your Ground isn’t in the book but was “discussed” in class? Assuming GZ remembers everything that happened in class? And two, is there any doubt which way she’ll rule since she’s arguing the state’s case FOR the prosecution.

If GZ is convicted, I have no doubt any sensible Appeals Court will overturn it. Ms. Nelson needs to go back to civil cases from which she came (as is indeed headed back to).

Yep, just stated again, SYG is NOT in the book. Jeez, I have no faith in our justice system. Or at least Florida’s.

He can’t be sued if it’s self-defense. He’s considered “Immune” unless Ms. Nelson finds some way around it. Since she’ll be back to civil then, she’ll probably hear that one too, as she is the suit against NBC.

    Matt in FL in reply to LoriL. | July 2, 2013 at 3:44 pm

    She’s going to family court, not civil, if I remember correctly.

      JackRussellTerrierist in reply to Matt in FL. | July 2, 2013 at 7:02 pm

      Maybe the fact that she’s being shipped to Family Law court explains why she wouldn’t grant the defense’s motion for a continuance?

Carol Herman | July 2, 2013 at 3:42 pm

ELB @ 3:23 PM. I haven’t been to Althouse in years and years! I have no idea what a Ricky Branch even is.

I did, however, get a computer virus from h’ll from her site! And, when my computer was repaired I never, ever again, went back.

    Oh Carol Carol — You got a virus from Althouse how exactly? You must have clicked on one of those gross Pamela Anderson wannabe sites on the right. There were lots of ugly things going around a couple years back, but blaming it on a major google blog (not the ads) is a stretch.

    Back to watching law be practiced and mispracticed.

    There was a Carol Herman who commented at Althouse about two years ago who went off in detail about “Rickey Branch” (trying to refer to Branch Rickey of the Dodgers). It was unintentionally hilarious. I was wondering if you were her.

      Goetz von Berlichingen in reply to EBL. | July 2, 2013 at 5:31 pm

      It’s her.
      She also posted at the Don Surber site.
      Wish he’d return,

    Are you sure that you are not “that” Carol Herman who got her own personal instalanche?

    As for a virus directly from the Althouse site – it is not likely, else everyone in the world reading a blogspot blog at that moment would have been zapped as well.

Hmm, MOM says it’s not in the book. So who’s right?

Zimmerman’s school records are relevant? How so??

    myiq2xu in reply to avwh. | July 2, 2013 at 4:52 pm

    Maybe he got detention for stalking and shooting a black kid when he was in the 3rd grade.

    kentuckyliz in reply to avwh. | July 2, 2013 at 5:26 pm

    They are talking about his college classes in criminal justice, not K-12 records. They would need the textbook, syllabus, class notes, and attendance records. Hint: colleges don’t keep central attendance records. We focus on what you learn. If you are focused on seat time, you are focusing on the wrong end of the student.

Humphreys Executor | July 2, 2013 at 4:00 pm

This is ridiculous. How is what GZ said about the SYG law relevant when he hasn’t claimed it as a defense? Can the state introduce extraneous evidence to rebut an out-of-court statement that the State itself introduced? This is just too far afield, confusing to the jury, etc., etc.

    Humphreys Executor in reply to Humphreys Executor. | July 2, 2013 at 4:26 pm

    Just to clarify: The State wants to bring in a witness to impeach the defendant’s out-of-court statement (which the state introduced) about a collateral matter. Why does the judge need briefing and argument on that? Objection sustained.

    I wondered how when the State introduced the evidence it is able to introduce evidence to rebut its evidence.

      Wolverine in reply to raider3. | July 2, 2013 at 8:20 pm

      Well so far the State has been spending all of their time at redirect trying to impeach their own witnesses so I guess this makes sense too.

Mr. Branca, thanks for your detailed and insightful coverage of this trial.

I don’t mean to seem ungrateful, so please forgive me a nitpick. (I make my living writing technical and legal contract documents for architects and engineers, so I know that precision with the written word is important in law.)

The misuse of “marshall” drives me nuts.

“Marshall” is a proper name, as in General/SecState George, Professor Alfred, Justice Thurgood, game show host Gerry, etc.

“Marshal” is a title (or part of a title), as in Fire Marshal, Field Marshal, Air Marshal, Grand Marshal, etc.

Thanks again.

    Exiliado in reply to rocinante2. | July 2, 2013 at 4:45 pm

    That’s irrelevant to the discussion, sir.
    Especially because after searching for ‘marshal’ (lowercase) the only occurrence in the whole page is within your comment.

      Matt in FL in reply to Exiliado. | July 2, 2013 at 4:51 pm

      That’s because he was commenting on the misuse of marshall. As in, the text thrice refers to Mark Osterman as a Federal Air Marshall (not Marshal, as is correct).

        Exiliado in reply to Matt in FL. | July 2, 2013 at 5:03 pm

        Oh! Thank you.
        I get it know.

        Still think it’s irrelevant, though.

          kentuckyliz in reply to Exiliado. | July 2, 2013 at 5:28 pm

          Some people have spelling and grammar peeves. In fact, grammar is often misspelled grammer. I think it’s from overexposure to Frasier episodes.

          Ragspierre in reply to Exiliado. | July 2, 2013 at 5:51 pm

          That’s what my ol’ grammar always taught us, and us young’uns know’d to listen…


    Marshal in reply to rocinante2. | July 2, 2013 at 6:01 pm


    rocinante2 | July 2, 2013 at 4:36 pm

    Mr. Branca, thanks for your detailed and insightful coverage of this trial.

    I don’t mean to seem ungrateful, so please forgive me a nitpick. (I make my living writing technical and legal contract documents for architects and engineers, so I know that precision with the written word is important in law.)

    The misuse of “marshall” drives me nuts.

    “Marshall” is a proper name, as in General/SecState George, Professor Alfred, Justice Thurgood, game show host Gerry, etc.

    “Marshal” is a title (or part of a title), as in Fire Marshal, Field Marshal, Air Marshal, Grand Marshal, etc.

    Marshal is also a proper name. Have you never come across names with variant spellings?

I hope they’ll bring in GZ’s tests to see if he answered the SYG questions correctly! He’s such an evil genius! I bet he didn’t even want to study criminal justice – he’s been working on nothing but an alibi for years! Murder 1, no question.

    rokiloki in reply to Fabi. | July 2, 2013 at 6:52 pm

    Holy crap! I see it now! All those prior calls to the non-emergency number wasn’t to report suspicious activity, it was to time the response time! He used them to figure out exactly how long he would have after making the call to chase down TM, let him scream for several seconds, stage a fight, shoot TM, bang his own head up, and then pretend to be recovering just as the first witnesses came out of their homes. He is an evil genius!

Duke Powell | July 2, 2013 at 5:08 pm

I’ll be interested in Mr.Branca’s take on the significance of the ruling that the Community College Instructor can testify tomorrow concerning Zimmerman’s course work. The media is spinning this as an attempt by the State to show that Zimmerman was trained in how to react and what to say in these types of situations.

That may or may not be substantive. But what is important are the two things Zimmerman DID NOT do in the immediate aftermath of the shooting.

1. Say, “Lawyer. Lawyer. Lawyer.”
2. And, as I discussed in an earlier post today, go with the ambulance to the hospital.

An “A” student in criminal justice studies would have done this.

    Goetz von Berlichingen in reply to Duke Powell. | July 2, 2013 at 5:37 pm

    The reasoning is circular:
    We train people to do X in certain situations and then we use that training as evidence of a depraved mind?

    Why would anyone ever agree to be trained?

    MegK in reply to Duke Powell. | July 2, 2013 at 5:50 pm

    Seems like a huge waste of time to me…trying to prove he was knowledgeable enough to lie certainly doesn’t prove he did. It also doesn’t explain why this brilliant, educated, fantastic lie he supposedly made up is supported by physical evidence and witness testimony.

    BubbaLeroy in reply to Duke Powell. | July 2, 2013 at 5:58 pm

    Anyone who thinks the thing to do in Zimmerman’s position is to cooperate extensively with the police, including giving multiple interviews, all without consulting an attorney would earn an F in any criminal justice course.

      GumBoocho in reply to BubbaLeroy. | July 2, 2013 at 9:46 pm

      I would have agreed with you; shut up to the cops. But actually this has turned out well for Zim. It resulted in his story being presented in court without him being on the stand & being cross-examined! And positive comment from cops on Zim also has accompanied this. Is the prosecution mentally challenged? Or are they honest enough to want the truth first above getting a conviction?

      But Zim gets punished no matter what. He spent a month in jail, wore an ankle device, had his money grabbed from him, has been under great stress for a long time. This is a big punishment for an innocent man.

    roppert in reply to Duke Powell. | July 2, 2013 at 6:47 pm

    Anyone who had watched an episode of “Law and Order” would have done that.

    rokiloki in reply to Duke Powell. | July 2, 2013 at 6:57 pm

    “1. Say ‘Lawyer. Lawyer. Lawyer.'”

    I thought that was the incantation to bring the dead back to life?

      iconotastic in reply to rokiloki. | July 2, 2013 at 8:14 pm

      “1. Say ‘Lawyer. Lawyer. Lawyer.’”

      Don’t you do that with a pentagram handy? I am told if they get out of the pentagram they can do tremendous damage.

I think this farce of a trial is sickening and outrageous.

The state is pressing charges without any evidence. As the trial progresses, it becomes more and more evident that they have nothing.

Wise up people!
If the state is allowed to do that, you can all kiss your freedom goodbye.

    txantimedia in reply to Exiliado. | July 2, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    Don’t be silly. Our freedoms were kissed bye bye a long time ago. Now we’re just trying to get them back – belatedly – and working with a huge mound of ignorant people – but hey, Americans have always been overly ambitious and too stubborn to know when they’ve been beaten.

Carol Herman | July 2, 2013 at 5:12 pm

We are composed of 50 State. And, if I wasn’t reading Meredith Whitney’s “Fate of the States,” where I’m learning states are competing with each other for business; I wouldn’t think Florida would go out of its way like this to show it isn’t worthy.

The housing bubble desimated Florida, where “sand states” took a hit. And, for instance, California isn’t having a good recovery due to the fact more people leave, here. Than can find jobs here. To move in.

Anyway, I do think (at least up to now), the Zimmerman’s trial coverage is on par with “big cases” we’ve seen televised before. Only the size of the jury, reduced to six, instead of 12, could be another item that catches people off-guard.

Blacks are only about 12% of our population. And, I’m not so sure Blacks get any advantages outside of government jobs. And, Dee-Dee’s face (as a possible employee) is absolutely terrifying. (I can’t even see Oprah wanting to interview her!) Sullen. Entitled. Quick to call any expectations from white people to be “retarded.”

And, even if only through word-of-mouth people went to You Tube to gloss through her testimony. Isn’t it possible she’s been seen by a billion folk? (Drudge headlined some of this stuff. And, Drudge maybe gets a billion people a day to run through his headlines?) I don’t know. But I am assuming it is a very large number.

So, to recap. I think Florida, as a State you’d consider moving to, hasn’t passed the smell test. And, falls to the bottom.

I also think by now anyone devoted to watching this trial must feel they’re caught in a traffic jam, and their seat doesn’t even go one block, after excruciating hours of testimony.

Too bad Zimmerman didn’t reach for Gerry Spence. (I Googled. Spence is making comments. Yeah. He’s an old man, now. And, I miss seeing him in his suede jacket with all that wonderful fringe.) Like I said, way back when I watched TV, I tuned in Larry King a lot! And, because I’ve just Googled … I got reminded of “TIMING.” Spence is a slow talker. He pauses just before he makes a point. And, he knows he has your heart in the palm of his hands.)

People should read’s version of today’s events using CNN expert. Unbelievably different take; they want so badly for Z to be found guilty. Read also the comments.

    txantimedia in reply to mbabbitt. | July 2, 2013 at 5:31 pm

    Since I don’t like being mentally abused, I avoid all sites like that. Y’all more dedicated types can do that if you want, but there’s only so many hours in the day, and I have none set aside for stupidity.

    Exiliado in reply to mbabbitt. | July 2, 2013 at 5:49 pm

    Never heard of them before, but they have a headline that reads:

    MSNBC Panel Concedes Prosecution’s Case Is Weak, ‘Little Hope’ Zimmerman Will Be Convicted

    And another one:

    As George Zimmerman Prosecution Implodes, A Media Invested In His Guilt Grows More Shrill

      Granny55 in reply to Exiliado. | July 2, 2013 at 6:24 pm

      But CNN is sticking by their GUILTY verdict! Every update they give is breathtaking for the State. It is so pitiful!

I was yelling at the TV today. Why didn’t the defense say “If you are looking straight up and your head is slammed onto concrete and then your head is turned so that you are looking in a slightly different direction and your head is slammed onto the concrete again, how many wound would that cause?” “And then if your head was turned in yet another direction next time, wouldn’t that cause yet another wound?”

    txantimedia in reply to darwin-t. | July 2, 2013 at 5:33 pm

    I don’t think the jurors needed the defense to point that out to them. Their own common sense can figure it out. Her testimony was stupid in the extreme and obviously tailored to fit the prosecution’s intention to prove that his injuries were not life threatening. They are clearly going to argue that a reasonable person would not be in fear for their life from a simple beating. If the jury buys that argument, I will be very surprised.

It seems to me that allowing the college professor to testify to GM’s record and his class in SYG and sefl defense law is a gift to the defense.
MOM: “So what sort of topics did you teach Mr Zimmerman?”
Prof: “Self defense law.”
MOM: “For example, did you teach him that you do not need to sustain a given amount of injury in order to use deadly force?”
Then it also seems that this opens the door for admission of TM’s record of fighting and aggression.

    BubbaLeroy in reply to divemedic. | July 2, 2013 at 6:04 pm

    Did you teach him that you have a right to remain silent and that if you have been taken into custody you should exercise that right until you talk to an attorney? Did you teach him that if you are guilty of a crime talking to the police can only hurt you? Would someone who has been taught these facts cooperate so freely with the police if he even thought he might be guilty of a crime?

      caambers in reply to BubbaLeroy. | July 2, 2013 at 7:15 pm

      It is weird and defies logic that someone could apparently pay enough attention to just one snippet of a curriculum to the point of being able to commit the crime he’s accused of yet miss that very basic bit of information with regards to what to do after you’ve done something that ‘may’ have you facing charges. The prosecution will claim he was asleep or skipped class that day to make that fit.

Nelson keeps looking more and more like a stooge for the state. Requiring an instant response from defense counsel for a brief the prosecution had all night to write seems terribly biased. It’s not clear the point was all that important, but is this kind of thing reversible error?

    Uncle Samuel in reply to randian. | July 2, 2013 at 6:39 pm

    Maybe Angela Corey is sitting in the back of the courtroom shaking or nodding her head or giving hand signals, or the Judge is wearing a wire so that she can get her directions from her masters.

Of course how much a beating Zim took is completely irrelevant. A 1st year law student knows this. Sure, his nose was broken, he was knocked down, he was verbally threatened with death, his head was smashed into concrete. None of this is even necessary to justify self-defense. He is within his rights to draw and shoot BEFORE he is even scratched – IF he believes his life is in peril. Clearly, being attacked goes FAR beyond the needed level of justification.

The state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman provoked the attack to even have a chance of a M2 conviction. So far they are falling very short of this. Nothing they have said supports this assertion.

In fact, the girlfriend’s testimony about TM getting into ANOTHER fight underscored that TM was a strong young man ready, willing, and very able to go after Zim.

Thus far, the state’s witnesses seem like they could have been custom picked by the defense instead of the prosecution.

It’s the end of the first-quarter and the score is State: 0, Zim: 50.

    caambers in reply to Twanger. | July 2, 2013 at 7:18 pm

    You should read the text message and texts between Martin and his friends. Even they were trying to talk him out of fighting so much and apparently, in addition to being on his third suspension, the whole reason he was sent to Sanford to be with his dad is due to fighting.

Carol Herman | July 2, 2013 at 6:28 pm

Talking about the medical examiner Valerie Rao, it’s worth Googling to find out that she’s not only incompetent, there’s about ten years worth of complaints out there about her.

So, she’s the one who measures Trayvon’s dead body. And, she’s the one who sheers inches off his feet. He comes in at 5’11” ONLY BECAUSE the State wanted to make Zimmerman appear bigger!

Wow. There’s a photo of Trayvon taken at the 7-11. He’s BIGGER than the clerk behind the counter!

He also wanted to buy a cigar! The clerk wouldn’t sell it to him. So 3 friends of Trayvon come in (while Trayvon waits outside) … and “Curly” buys two cigars. And, then proffers money for a 3rd.

ALSO: Trayvon purchased Arizona Iced Tea in a flavor called WATERMELON.

There’s 40 minutes missing from the time line … where those cigars could have been sliced open. All the kids wanted to do was get high. The tobacco leaf is then folded around MARIJUANA. This “smoke” is called a “BLOUNT” And, Trayvon’s cell phone records shows he’s texted about this.

He’s also texted about PURPLE DRANK. (Which you make when you mix the WATERMELON Arizona Iced Tea with Robitussin Cough Syrup.) Did Trayvon’s dad’s girlfriend BRANDY GREEN, have any of this product in her house? Chad Joseph is her son. He’s waiting for Trayvon to come back. But doesn’t seem to understand why police cars would be parking right outside his bedroom window?)

There’s a whole slew of behaviors out there that belong “to da hood.” Which aren’t familiar to white folk.

    Ragspierre in reply to Carol Herman. | July 2, 2013 at 7:07 pm

    Carol, step back from the keyboard…

    First, Rao never examined EITHER Zimmerman or Martin. She did not perform the autopsy of Martin.

    Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar. It is not a Bill Clinton sex toy, or the foundation for a blunt. I have never abused a cigar in either fashion, btw.

    The whole “drank” deal is an internet myth. Not that it does not exist, or even that Martin may have bragged about it. There is NO evidence he ever actually used it.

    But he SURE was not intoxicated on anything that O’Mara could have found in a blood test…which is pretty much everything.

    And, trust me, there are “white folk” in the hip-hop culture, too.

      caambers in reply to Ragspierre. | July 2, 2013 at 7:54 pm

      There was measurable THC in his blood panels and from what I understand, the autopsy found liver damage consistent with drug abuse that wouldn’t have been expected in one so young. I don’t know if that information is admissible but one of the first things Zimmerman said in his description of Martin was that the individual appeared to be on something. I realize that Martin isn’t on trial BUT since much of this entire case is who started it and how it escalated. Being high causes some people to do things when high, be it alcohol or controlled substances, that they wouldn’t ordinarily do because of a hyper-inflated sense of their invincibility. I reckon that would be something for the closing and the defense to point out.

        Ragspierre in reply to caambers. | July 2, 2013 at 8:36 pm

        Do some more research, and don’t swallow BS at face value.

        Some of your sources are full of crap. There is no science behind the “liver damage” bullshit from the “treehouse”.

        Yeah, TRACE amounts of THC, but certainly no intoxication.


        Henry Hawkins in reply to caambers. | July 2, 2013 at 8:40 pm

        Liver damage would not be unusual in an amateur ‘fight club’ MMA wannabe, the damage coming from without the body via trauma. As for drugs, unless there is a shock level overdose, it generally takes a while for drug abuse, particularly alcohol abuse, to cause damage to the liver. Marijuana isn’t likely to do it, cocaine variants generally tend to damage the heart and/or brain first, while heroin is as slow as alcohol to cause its damages, typically many years of abuse.

        It’s not uncommon for a 17 yr old to have abused drugs badly enough to cause liver damage, but it isn’t common either. One ‘drug abuse’ way to get liver damage quickly is via ‘huffing’ of certain chemicals – enamel paint, lacquer thinner, etc. – but this too tends to damage the brain first and worst rather than the liver alone.

        If Martin has liver damage but no concurrent heart, brain, or lung damage consistent with drug abuse, then I’d suspect trauma from fighting or possibly some NSAID overdose, such as on aspirin. If his liver damage is from alcohol abuse, there ought to other signs, like busted capillaries and/or yellowed eyes and/or esophageal damage.

        Whether from alcohol and/or drug abuse, liver damage is usually a late-middle to late stage effect and rarely stands as the only effect noticeable in an autopsy.

[…] Zimmerman Update Exclusive — Mid-Day 7 — Serino more ambivalent, Osterman supports self-defense […]

You say, “More to follow in the end-of-day wrap-up.” Where? How do you find it?
I am struggling, poking around here & there to find your commentaries. Why make it so hard?

Carol Herman | July 2, 2013 at 9:43 pm

When cops came to the scene they called in the medics. And, there were attempts at CPR. Meaning Trayvon was on his back so CPR could be administered. Though no one “blue bagged” him.

Also, Zimmerman did NOT know Trayvon was dead. When a police officer (female) told him, he was shocked. I believe he said after he fired ONE SHOT Trayvon “sat up” … and said “you got me.”

Death wasn’t “immediate, immediate.” As to why Trayvon is face down in this photograph? Maybe, as Zimmerman got up, Trayvon was “pushed off.” And, then rotated like a log onto his face?

Because we’re reading the blog we know that the prosecutor has had very bad days. What’s unknown is how the jury is reacting. (And, I also thought that at the point the “scream in the tape” is heard … cameras went to Sabrina (who was texting.) And, Tracy Trayvon looks like he’s paying attention like it’s a horse race. And, he wants his horse “to win.” There’s absolutely NO concerns about Zimmerman at all. (Yes. I find that odd, t00.) Here’s a guy who is helping keep vandals and thieves out of his neighbors homes … And, Tracy is just a free loader. Living with a female that has a son. As he convinces her that his son (whose been suspended from school), should come to the condo to be UNsupervised. As he and his “fiancee” were having a night on the town.)

Was Trayvon supposed to be a baby sitter? He never comes home. So how is this all a good thing for Chad Joseph, the other kid? Is everyone (but Alicia Martin) being promised jackpot money?

Oh, what ever happened to Brandy Green, and her son, Chad? Do they still live at the condo complex?

Did you know, what with the real estate bust really hitting Florida hard, these units have become very hard to sell? And, some owners lease out their units to undesirable tenants.

    Baker in reply to Carol Herman. | July 2, 2013 at 10:08 pm

    I’m with you, Carol,about Trayvon not coming home. Am I correct that the police were not able to identify Trayvon until the next morning (at least 12 hours after the incident) when someone finally started looking for him?

Carol Herman | July 3, 2013 at 1:38 am

Ragspierre, I read there’s a timeline, between when Trayvon is at the 7-11. And, the time Zimmerman first sees him. I think 40 minutes passed.

I didn’t know why Trayvon wanted to buy cigars. But IF the clerk in the 7-11 comes in, (and he’d have to be shown the video or stills from the store’s surveillance camera(s) … 3 friends of Trayvon’s come in. One has identifiable “curly hair.” He’s the fella that will buy 2 cigars. And, then proffer more cash for a third. These cigars are very cheap.

I just couldn’t imagine WHY these kids needed cigars. And, it turns out the explanation rests on the tabacco leaf. Which is the “skin” that’s kept, after the insides of the cigar are scraped off. In other words, instead of the paper cigarette wrappers, the cigar leaf makes for a “bigger” marijuana cigarette.

Then, there’s the PURPLE DRANK. Which is made by mixing Robitussin with WATERMELON FLAVORED Arizona Iced Tea.

Again, there’s all sorts of cell phone message texts “out there.” You’d have thought the State would have figured out that Trayvon wasn’t a saint.

Certainly Brenda Green had heard of Trayvon’s latest suspension from school. As a parent, wouldn’t that have concerned her? Here, the parenting seems abysmal to absent. As if parents don’t have their hairs turn grey, as they worry about their own teenagers.

If it wasn’t for the Internet we wouldn’t get any information at all.

Carol Herman | July 3, 2013 at 1:47 am

The cops look in a body’s pocket to see if they can find ID.

I remember being in an ER when two unconscious teens were brought in following a very bad accident. I remember a parent, who had been called because one of the kids had ID inside a wallet, came in. He looked at the unconscious teen’s face and said “I’m not sure if that’s my son, or not.”

Trayvon wasn’t carrying anything on him that would identify who he was. His dad (supposedly) had given him $100. But all Trayvon had in his pocket was $40.

I’m not even sure anyone knows where the can (empty or full) of the Watermelon flavored Arizona Iced Tea went.

Also, I saw a photo, today, where Trayvon had a few gold teeth. The “eye teeth” on top. And, then two more gold teeth on the bottom. He also may have had tattoos.

Don’t these things cost money?

[…] Where to follow the Zimmerman trial if you are so inclined. […]

[…] Zimmerman Update Exclusive — Mid-Day 7 — Serino more ambivalent, Osterman supports self-defense […]

[…] in self defense-which has been borne out by the evidence in the case in recent weeks (see here and here) it is positively […]