Running updates from the Zimmerman trial
NATIONAL NEWS (HLN) — HLN, CNN's sister network, is covering the George Zimmerman trial, gavel to gavel. Zimmerman is charged with second-degree murder in the death of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin on February 26, 2012. Here is testimony from Wednesday:
[Updated at 9:19 a.m. ET]
The page that lists "bad credit" as the reason Zimmerman's police officer application was rejected will be removed from evidence. The judge has recessed court for 10 minutes.
[Updated at 9:17 a.m. ET]
Mantei shows a picture of a shoe horn as he makes his final argument. The judge rules that the defense's objections are overruled and the prosecution's witnesses will be able to testify about Zimmerman's coursework in criminal justice and his desire to be a cop.
[Updated at 9:15 a.m. ET]
O'Mara says the prosecutors have to show a definite connection between the evidence and their theory, and he says they're failed to do so.
[Updated at 9:12 a.m. ET]
"They are putting them in so they can turn them into seething bad acts. Subtle but seething bad acts by my client," says O'Mara. He says the case law presented by the prosecutor showed bad acts by the defendant.
[Updated at 9:10 a.m. ET]
Mantei says it doesn't matter if Zimmerman was in a particular class -- it's more relevant that he voluntarily signed up for the course and had an interest in it. Defense attorney O'Mara asks for a couple of hours to review the prosecution's case law. The judge tells him she gave them the night to prepare.
"In all due respect, we started this issue yesterday afternoon. I had the jury out for a half-hour so you could have time to research this issue," says Judge Debra Nelson. She also says the defense asked for the night to prepare, which she gave it. She won't give it any more time to research the issue.
[Updated at 9:06 a.m. ET]
The judge tells prosecutor Mantei that all the information about Zimmerman's credit issues would need to be redacted. Mantei says he wouldn't have any issues with that.
[Updated at 9:05 a.m. ET]
"He would know what might be asked of him, done with certain pieces of evidence, what he might be asked about. ... He would know these things or at least have reason to know these things," says Mantei.
[Updated at 9:02 a.m. ET]
Zimmerman's desire to be a police officer isn't bad, says Mantei, but it helps show his state of mind the night of the shooting.
[Updated at 8:56 a.m. ET]
Mantei is showing case law to explain why he thinks this evidence is relevant. He says it helps show Zimmerman's state of mind the night of the shooting.
[Updated at 8:51 a.m. ET]
Prosecutor Richard Mantei says the evidence also shows Zimmerman learned about testifying and talking to police. Mantei says you don't get to consider Zimmerman's frustrations in a vacuum. He is showing the judge a PowerPoint presentation that outlines his argument. Mantei says Zimmerman's "extracurricular life mirrors" his desires to be a cop. Mantei says Zimmerman used police jargon like "I unholstered my firearm." He also says Zimmerman told police he knew "the legal side" of the situation he was in.
[Updated at 8:44 a.m. ET]
O'Mara is now discussing Zimmerman's school-related paperwork and says it's irrelevant because of how long ago it happened and the lack of connection to the case. O'Mara makes the same argument about some of Zimmerman's homework and a project he submitted about the Fourth Amendment. He also questions the relevancy of a book from Zimmerman's class that has three pages on self-defense. O'Mara says Zimmerman may not have read it.
[Updated at 8:39 a.m. ET]
Zimmerman's application to become a police officer seems to have been rejected because of his credit issues, according to O'Mara. He says this evidence is irrelevant and that they'd demand Zimmerman's actual application, not just a letter to him about it. O'Mara also wants to talk to witnesses who reviewed the application.
[Updated at 8:38 a.m. ET]
O'Mara argues that the fact that Zimmerman asked to ride along with police two years before he shot Martin is irrelevant.
[Updated at 8:35 a.m. ET]
O'Mara says prosecutors need to show that Zimmerman was actually present for class when there was a discussion about "Stand Your Ground." O'Mara says the class's book was generic, not based on Florida law. O'Mara says prosecutors are trying to use out-of-court evidence to impeach an out-of-court statement. He also says he believes the professor will say he talked about self-defense but he's not sure if Zimmerman was present or not. O'Mara says that if prior coursework can be introduced, then the defense should be able to talk about Trayvon Martin getting into fights in the past.
[Updated at 8:30 a.m. ET]
Zimmerman is in the courtroom and the judge is on the bench. Defense attorney Mark O'Mara has asked for a few minutes to get ready.
[Posted at 8:17 a.m. ET]
Attorneys are expected to make legal arguments on the admissibility of Zimmerman's school records starting at 8:30 a.m. ET. Jurors have been asked to return at 9 a.m. ET.