Zimmerman attorneys say they may finish Wednesday

Expert testifies Zimmerman's account is consistent with Martin's gunshot wounds.
Associated Press
Jul 9, 2013

 

An expert on gunshot wounds hired by the defense testified Tuesday that George Zimmerman's account of how he fatally shot Trayvon Martin is consistent with the forensic evidence as defense attorneys started wrapping up their presentation.

Dr. Vincent DiMaio said that the trajectory of the bullet and gun powder on Martin's body support Zimmerman's version that Martin was on top of him when Zimmerman fired his gun into Martin's chest. The gun's muzzle was against Martin's clothing and it was anywhere from two to four inches from Martin's skin, he said.

"This is consistent with Mr. Zimmerman's account that Mr. Martin was over him, leaning forward at the time he was shot," said DiMaio, the former chief medical examiner in San Antonio.

The pathologist also said it was likely Martin was conscious for 10 to 15 seconds after the shooting as a reserve supply of oxygen ran out of his body, and during that time he could have moved his arms. Zimmerman's account that he had placed Martin's arms out to his sides after the shooting contradicts a photo taken after the shooting that shows Martin's arms under his body. Defense attorneys contend Martin moved his arms.

DiMaio testified lacerations to the back of Zimmerman's head were consistent with his head striking a concrete sidewalk. Later, when looking at photos of Zimmerman's injuries taken the night of the shooting, DiMaio identified six separate impacts to Zimmerman's face and head. He said a nose injury could have come from being punched.

DiMaio also explained that if clothes taken into evidence are wet and packaged in plastic bags, and not paper bags, it can ruin the samples since "bacteria multiplies and you get mold and it stinks to high heaven." Defense attorneys believe DNA evidence found on Martin's hooded sweatshirt and undershirt was degraded since the clothing wasn't packaged properly.

Under cross-examination, DiMaio conceded  the gunshot could also be consistent with Martin pulling away from Zimmerman, and he didn't rely on statements from some Zimmerman neighbors who say Zimmerman was on top of Martin to reach his conclusion. The pathologist, who also has testified at the murder trials of Illinois police sergeant Drew Peterson and record producer Phil Spector, said he had been paid $2,400 by the defense.

After DiMaio testified, the 911 calls that captured sounds of the fatal encounter were discussed again. Defense attorneys called Sanford City Manager Norton Bonaparte to the witness stand to describe the circumstances of how Martin's family came to hear the 911 tapes. Bonaparte said he played the 911 tapes while members of Martin's family sat together at City Hall. He played them as a courtesy before they were released publicly.

Defense attorneys are trying to show that Martin's family members may have influenced each other in concluding the screams are those of the Miami teen. Police officers testified for the defense that it's better for someone who is trying to identify a voice to listen to it alone.

Defense attorney Mark O'Mara also told Judge Debra Nelson the defense would likely finish putting on its case on Wednesday. Zimmerman, so far, hasn't testified. But jurors saw repeated video recordings of Zimmerman telling his side of the story to police investigators. The defense started its case last Friday, and if it keeps to the schedule anticipated by O'Mara, its presentation will take about half of the time of the prosecution.

Nelson considered prosecutors' request to bar the defense from showing animation depicting the fight between Martin and Zimmerman. Nelson held an evidence hearing with jurors out of the courtroom, but ultimately postponed her decision and more arguments on the matter until later in the afternoon.

Prosecutors object to the animation, saying it isn't an accurate depiction.

Defense attorneys called the man who created the animation to testify. To recreate the fight, Daniel Schumaker went to the crime scene and had employees in motion-capture suits re-enact what happened based on coroner photographs, police reports, the coroner's report, witness depositions and photos taken by responding police officers, he said.

The fight took place on a dark, rainy night in February 2012, and there were no eyewitnesses who saw the entire fight. Several witnesses saw and heard parts of the struggle that left Martin dead with a bullet in his heart.

Testimony in previous days has focused on a 911 call that captures screams from the struggle between Martin and Zimmerman.

Convincing the jury of who was screaming for help on the tape has become the primary goal of prosecutors and defense attorneys because it would help jurors evaluate Zimmerman's self-defense claim. Relatives of Martin's and Zimmerman's have offered conflicting opinions about who is heard screaming.

Zimmerman's mother and uncle testified last Friday it was Zimmerman screaming, while Martin's mother and brother also took the witness stand last Friday to say the voice belongs to Martin. Martin's father testified Monday  he initially couldn't tell if the screams came from his son, but later decided they did.

Zimmerman himself once said during a police interview the screams didn't sound like him, though he and his family later said the screams were his.

Zimmerman has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and says he shot Martin in self-defense during a scuffle in the townhome complex where he lived. Martin was there visiting his father and his father's fiancée.

 

Comments

gramafun

I thought this man was guilty as sinat the beginning. After listening to all the information to this point, I am no longer sure. I think he is guilty of negligent homicide but not murder. He shouldn't have followed Trayvon Martin or shot him, but it was more of an accident after the boy attacked him. It was a sad accident.

eriemom

I would have felt as if I were being stalked. Zimmerman would not have been following him without a gun. So, if you take the gun out of the equation, none of this would have happened. Worse case scenario would have been an a$$ whoopin.

SamAdams

Sorry, neither negligent NOR an accident. You've given the rationale yourself: The boy attacked him. He defended himself. The end.

Should he have followed Martin? Maybe, maybe not. I wouldn't have done so, but I wasn't charged with that timeframe and/or area in a Neighborhood Watch. Should he have shot Martin? That's entirely subjective. But frankly, if somebody was banging YOUR head against the sidewalk, don't tell me you wouldn't do whatever YOU needed to do!

The Big Dog's back

I didn't know you were there sam. How the ck do you know Trayvon attacked zim? Oh, because zim said so? There were only 2 witnesses to the crime and 1 is dead.

Amerian Dad

Totally disagree..... Not Guilty!

margaritaville88

AGREE..there should not even be a trial..just sickening racism bull$hi!..leave this man (Zimmerman) alone. In Florida, the law is the law people!!! WAKE UP AMERICA

The Big Dog's back

Gee, hope your kids aren't walking home and have someone stalking them. What's the 1st thing we tell our children to do if some stranger, creepy cracker in this case, is following them? Run, Scream, and defend yourself.

meplus5

No1 will ever know the truth except the 2 people that were actually there.

beepx22

so far most of the evidence seems to be in zimmerman's favor

The Big Dog's back

Gee, why is that? Oh, because the victim didn't survive! You people really disgust me.

registerer

Walking!

The prosecutors office was asked to charge him with manslaughter. They declined and said it was murder. That was their mistake.

sandtown born a...

I for one have always felt a charge of murder was a stretch to say the least.

tiredofthecrap

innocent!

Contango

If Mr. Zimmerman walks, will CNN, HLN and other racial division pimping cable networks provide 24 hr. coverage and running commentary on the riots, protests and any other violent and peaceful public reactions in Sanford and major U.S. cities?

Will TM's wannabe father give us his impression from the WH?

grumpy

If you are asking if he will actually lead the country... he would then have to step outside his experience of leading from behind... or was that speaking from his behind? If the second, he has much experience with that... you only have to listen to his speeches... especially when his teleprompter doesn't function, or isn't there to inform him of his positions.

The Big Dog's back

Sock puppet.

deertracker

Pooh, you got it bad for Obama!!!!!!!!!!!!!! LOL!!

arnmcrmn

Self defense.....I could have saved the tax payers a lot of money.

The Big Dog's back

A 17 year old boy stalked and gunned down by a 27 year old man. A 200 lb. 27 year year old coward with a gun.

The Big Dog's back

Did George Zimmerman have help from his father, a retired judge, in clearing his name in three separate arrests?

That’s the question that’s being asked now that more information on Trayvon Martin’s 28-year-old killer is being revealed. Robert Zimmerman, a former Orange County magistrate judge, recently wrote a letter to The Orlando Sentinel defending his son, who’s been dragged through the mud for shooting the unarmed 17-year-old last month. In the letter, the senior Zimmerman asks people not to jump to conclusions and insists that his son didn’t follow the young boy home as he walked through their gated community.

“He would be the last to discriminate for any reason whatsoever. The media portrayal of George as a racist could not be further from the truth. At no time did George follow or confront Mr. Martin. When the true details of the event became public, and I hope that will be soon, everyone should be outraged by the treatment of George Zimmerman in the media,” wrote Robert Zimmerman.

Now more info is being dug up on his “victimized” son through public records and revealing his checkered past.

According to a records search on George, he was previously arrested for domestic violence, resisting an officer without violence and most shockingly, resisting an officer with violence — a felony charge that surely could have landed him in prison.

All three of those arrests, however, were mysteriously closed with no semblance of charges for the Florida resident. So how was someone with a violent past including that of battery against an officer able to carry a 9 mm handgun? Maybe that’s a question Robert Zimmerman should answer

margaritaville88

You are in denial..The black community is more racist than ever. This does not make our great Country any better. When FACTS are presented, people like you big dog do not want to listen at all. All you want to do is rebel and riot and such....GROW UP and face the TRUTH!! Slavery has been gone for a long time!! Get a new agenda and get a job, stop blaming everyone else, Thank You..

The Big Dog's back

So I should be like you, a fall in line right winger? Never.

joshua206's picture
joshua206

I would have shot that wannabe thug too. Unloaded the whole clip just like the cops do it. Then I would have said "he went for my pistol" this is where Zimmerman messed up, he said he was "in fear of his life" big difference. Also Zimmerman messed up by hiring this crappy attorney. This guy is almost as bad as Dean Henry, almost.

goofus

My oh My porch puppy surely has his panties in a bunch over this trial!!!
http://www.judicialwatch.org/bul...
Typical Kool-Aid consumer!!!!

margaritaville88

Thanks goofus

deertracker

I heard earlier he does not plan to take the stand. IMO, if your defense is a claim of self defense you should have to take the stand. If he was truly defending his life that night he should have no problem doing it in court. I know that is not how the law works but.........

grumpy

Yes I can understand why you don't wish to follow the rule of law in this case. When you do so it shows that your predetermined outcome of Zimmerman being found guilty probably won't happen. Seems when your way can't be sustained the rule of law needs to be thrown out the window so your way is the only way possible. Much like a 10 year old who doesn't get his way, change the rules so you can get your way. Typical for those stuck in puberty.

deertracker

Listen Tigger, aka pooh's buddy, Reread the post. I never suggested anything be changed! Speaking of 10 year olds! It is the republiCons that want to change the rules since they have no chance at winning a national election fairly.

grumpy

Yes 10 year olds who call others names. It shows their and your maturity, along with wishing to change the rule of law when a defendant decides not to testify. His view of the crime has been played on video several times during the trial, even the cops who heard it said it was what they believed. The police chief, who didn't press charges believed the evidence presented. It took 45 days for enough political pressure for the state to appoint a special prosecutor before he was even charged.

The Big Dog's back

Oh, so now the cops are your "friends" ehh pooh.

grumpy

If the cops don't see enough to bring charges, and the county prosecutor doesn't see enough to bring charges... it take a month and a half of political pressure from outsiders who aren't as aware of what the facts of the case are, as those on site, let alone what the evidence is... before the Governor appoints a special prosecutor whose only job is to bring charges... it isn't hard to see what the people who were hands on, knew more of the facts of the case. There was a reason they didn't bring charges.

I neither like nor dislike cops and prosecutors that I have never met nor had dealings with of any kind. I would have no reason to have an opinion on them. From the cops who did testify, it doesn't sound like their opinions changed over time even with more facts and evidence since they decided not to bring charges. They still believed what Zimmerman said and thought the evidence backed his claims under oath, till the judge told the jury to disregard those statements... a day later... hard for the jury to disreagrd something that the judge had to remind them of.

deertracker

Just calling it how I see it Tigger!!!!!!!!!!!!!

nonconformist

One thing I do know, if he's foun not guilty there is going to be one heck Of a sphit storm to follow. I predict Rodney King all over again.

margaritaville88

you are right..read my post to bigdog

nonconformist

True...

deertracker

That's what you want to happen but it won't!

44846GWP

Zimmerman had no reason to follow the kid. He all ready called the Police, let them handle it.

The Big Dog's back

Why didn't zim identify himself as a volunteer HOA person?