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Zimmerman Waives "Stand Your Ground" Pretrial Hearing

April 30, 2013 | WMFE - George Zimmerman waived his right Tuesday to a pretrial immunity hearing under the state's "stand your ground" law. The former neighborhood watch volunteer who says he shot and killed Trayvon Martin in self-defense says he wants a jury -- not a judge -- to decide his fate.

[Photo: Defense attorney Mark O'Mara]

"Is it your decision not to have a pretrial immunity hearing?"

"After a consultation with my counsel yes, your honor."

Zimmerman spoke for himself during a court hearing in Sanford.

Afterward his attorney Mark O'Mara told reporters he hasn't ruled out bringing up "stand your ground" at trial.

"This case has taken on a huge significance well beyond the facts of the case."

O'Mara said Zimmerman's preference for a jury decision made a pretrial immunity hearing irrelevant.

"We want a jury to say that's non-guilt because maybe the country would listen to that better than they would listen to a judge." 

Martin family attorney Natalie Jackson said Zimmerman's decision vindicates protesters who rallied for his arrest in the weeks after the teen's death.

Zimmerman is charged with second-degree murder. He faces trial in June.


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