Trayvon Shooter George Zimmerman Waives His Right to a Stand Your Ground Hearing So His Attorneys Can Discredit An Important Witness
George Zimmerman’s attorneys stunned court observers today by deciding to skip a “Stand Your Ground” hearing slated for April that might have led to a dismissal of the charges in the shooting death of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin.
Under Florida’s Stand Your Ground law, Zimmerman is entitled to immunity and if he can prove he shot and killed Martin Feb. 26, 2012 self defense. If self defense was determined, all criminal proceedings would have immediately stopped, and Zimmerman would have walked free.
The defense left open the likelihood that they could ask for a Stand Your Ground hearing before the June trial, but by waiting until the later date his legal team would have more time to prepare their case.
Yeah, they want more time to completely discredit Witness No. 8, the audio witness, the young woman who claimed to be on the cellphone with Trayvon Martin just before he was killed. Why? She gave the defense two big openings. One, that she was not sixteen years old, as family attorney Benjamin Crump had maintained, but eighteen when the fatal incident occurred. Two, a more recent revelation came when the prosecution had to admit that the girl had lied about being ill and in the hospital instead of being present at Trayvon Martin’s funeral.
Why would the girl lie about all this? Did Crump unknowingly misrepresent her true age? Does she have a record? She should have simply said, “I didn’t want to go, because I was embarrassed/scared/didn’t want to be publicly identified.” Why would she lie about not wanting to attend the funeral of her boyfriend? Did she think that she wouldn’t be caught up in her fib? Jeez.
It was not her first, but it was the most damaging to date and left prosecutors in a very awkward position.
They had to publicly acknowledge that their star witness had lied under oath and had to answer questions about what they intend to do about it.
Will you charge the 19-year-old Miami woman with perjury, reporters asked.
The state’s lead prosecutor, Bernie de la Rionda, gave an ambiguous answer: “You can all read the law and make your own decision.”
Sanford police found no witnesses who saw the confrontation between the two, but Trayvon’s family attorney, Benjamin Crump, found something close: the 19-year-old Miami woman, who’s identified in court records as “witness 8.” She who told him she had been on the cell phone with Trayvon just before the shooting.
She said Trayvon told her a stranger was following him, and he was scared. Trayvon got away from him once, but the man re-appeared, she said, and she heard Trayvon ask, ” ‘What are you following me for? ‘ ”
The man answered, ” ‘What are you doing here?’ ” she said, then she said the man must have pushed Trayvon because the phone went dead.
The woman gave de la Rionda a very similar account during a sworn statement April 2, and when his office wrote up its probable cause affidavit, charging Zimmerman with second-degree murder, it rehashed her account but did not include her allegation that she heard Zimmerman push Trayvon.
I dunno. All this looks pretty strange. And it looks bad, no matter how innocuous—and silly—the fibbing is. I don’t want to think that this girl has lied about the call; the cellphone records would corroborate that there was a conversation before Trayvon was confronted by Zimmerman. My feeling is, don’t give the defense an opening for Zimmerman to walk, but what gets me is that the prosecution has this nonchalant attitude about both developments. And I don’t like that at all.
- George Zimmerman Waives Right To ‘Stand Your Ground’ Hearing In Stunning Twist To Trayvon Martin Case (jhaines6.wordpress.com)
- Zimmerman Stuns Court in Trayvon Martin Case (secretsofthefed.com)
- George Zimmerman Attorneys Due in Court Today (hispanicbusiness.com)
- Trayvon Martin: One year later, where the case stands (tv.msnbc.com)
- Zimmerman Lawyer Cancels ‘Stand Your Ground’ Hearing (tampa.cbslocal.com)
- No April immunity hearing in Trayvon Martin case (local10.com)
- Hoodies Up! Where Are We Since Trayvon Was Murdered? (thisblksistaspage.wordpress.com)