George Zimmerman Trial: Opening Statements Scheduled for Monday in Racially Charged Case

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By Myles Collier, Christian Post Contributor
June 21, 2013|8:45 am

The trial involving George Zimmerman will hear opening arguments on Monday in a trial that is expected to draw attention not only to race but Florida's controversial stand your ground law.

The jury selection process ended this week and Zimmerman's fate will be decided by six women, all but one of them white, to decide if Zimmerman murdered 17-year-old Trayvon Martin or acted in self-defense.

Martin was fatally shot by Zimmerman in Seminole County, Florida on February 26, 2012. Zimmerman has adamantly claimed that he acted in self-defense, but the case has sparked high tensions with a national debate on race relations and gun laws.

Zimmerman is Hispanic, and was a self-appointed neighborhood watchman. He has been accused of racially profiling Martin, following him and getting into an altercation with him in which he ended up killing the teenager.

Zimmerman has already entered a plea of not guilty, and is currently free but on $1 million bond.

On the day of the killing, Martin is said to have left his father's girlfriend's home in Sanford to go to a nearby convenience store. He is said to have purchased a bag of skittles and an iced tea. However, on his way back he was followed by Zimmerman, who placed a 911 call reporting seeing a suspicious person in his neighborhood.

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In his conversation with a dispatcher, Zimmerman was specifically told not to continue following the teenager. But just moments later Zimmerman killed Martin, who was famously wearing a hoodie at the time.

Zimmerman has claimed he acted in self-defense, alleging that Martin slammed his head against the sidewalk, and punched him in the face. Zimmerman suffered a fractured nose and cuts to the back of his head, according to defense reports.

Martin was unarmed when he was killed, and his supporters have claimed that Zimmerman unfairly profiled him because he was African-American, and because he was wearing a hoodie. They claim Zimmerman acted like a vigilante and should be punished for the alleged murder.

 

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