Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Zimmerman's attorneys backtrack on Trayvon Martin fight video

George Zimmerman's attorneys backtracked Sunday on what they say a video of a fight found on Trayvon Martin's cellphone shows.

In court Tuesday, defense attorney Mark O'Mara described it as Martin recording two friends beating up a homeless man.

But in Sunday's statement, O'Mara apologized and said it really shows Martin recording two homeless men fighting over a bicycle.

Martin, along with a friend, had come upon the fight and Martin had simply recorded it, according to the statement.

O'Mara described his mischaracterization in court as unintentional and said he was unhappy about it.

"We have been committed to disputing misinformation in every aspect of this case, not causing it," the statement said.

That piece of video is among evidence O'Mara's office notified prosecutors two weeks ago that it may use at Zimmerman's second-degree murder trial, scheduled to begin June 10 in Sanford.

Natalie Jackson, an attorney for Martin's family, was asked Tuesday what she knew about a video showing Martin recording his friends beating up a homeless man. She said she was not sure it existed.

Martin is the unarmed black 17-year-old that Zimmerman, a Neighborhood Watch volunteer, fatally shot Feb. 26, 2012.

Zimmerman says he acted in self-defense, that the teenager attacked him, knocking him to the ground with a punch that broke his nose and that Martin then climbed on top of him and began hammering his head against a sidewalk.

Prosecutors say Zimmerman profiled the black teenager, assuming he was about to commit a crime, followed and murdered him.

O'Mara has presented evidence that he says shows that Martin took part in organized fights.

Two weeks ago, he released text messages from Martin's cellphone. In one, the Miami Gardens teenager wrote that in one fight he got pummeled in the first round because his opponent got him on the ground.

Also in court Tuesday, O'Mara said he had found video of Martin refereeing a fight.

The judge ruled Tuesday that O'Mara may not talk about Martin fighting during his opening statement but, if he convinces her during the trial that it's relevant and admissible, she would allow it.

Zimmerman's attorneys backtrack on Trayvon Martin fight video 06/02/13 [Last modified: Sunday, June 2, 2013 10:19pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours