Judge in Zimmerman trial does not permit audio testimony as evidence

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June 22, 2013, 10:16 pm
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(NECN/NBC News: Jay Gray, Sanford, Fla.) - It is considered one of the most important and controversial pieces of evidence from the night former community watchman George Zimmerman shot and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.

Martin's parents have said their son can be heard screaming for help in the background of the 911 call. Zimmerman's father has countered that it's his son calling out during a confrontation that night.

The last word in the role the call will play in the second degree murder trial was issued by Judge Deborah Nelson this weekend. The recording will be allowed to be entered as evidence in the case, but in a written ruling issued Saturday, Judge Nelson said the jury will not hear from state audio experts who had suggested the voice on the tape may be martin's, calling the science involved "not reliable."

“The decision not to allow the prosecution's expert testimony about the 911 tape has struck a very serious blow to the prosecution. Without that testimony, they have pieces of a puzzle, but they don't have clear answers,” said legal analyst Kendall Coffey. “There could be a great deal of difficulty in overcoming reasonable doubt with respect to the self-defense claim of Geroge Zimmerman.”

Zimmerman has pleaded not guilty, telling police he shot Martin in self-defense.

Prosecutors have not talked about judge nelson's ruling, but Zimmerman’s attorney says she made the right call.

"Good science can be a benefit to a jury. But, when it becomes junk science, as it would have been in this case, I was very glad it was kept away from the jury," said defense attorney Mark O’Mara.

The jury is scheduled to hear opening arguments in the case Monday morning.

Tags: florida, Sanford, Jay Gray, NBC News, Trayvon Martin, George Zimmerman
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