Ahead of the June 10th date for the second-degree murder defense trial for George Zimmerman (pictured), a misstep by the former night watchman’s legal team presented one of many new developments in the case. Attorney Mark O’Mara acknowledged that his team “misstated” the origin and nature of a video they planned to present as evidence against slain teen Trayvon Martin. O’Mara apologized via a brief statement on Sunday (June 2), but the Martin legal team alleges there was a fabrication.
RELATED: NewsOne’s Coverage Of Trayvon Martin
In a hearing last week, O’Mara stated that they obtained cellphone video of a pair of Martin’s friends beating a homeless person in a bid to connect violent behavior to the teen’s past. O’Mara was forced to recant the video, after it was discovered that the video taken from Martin’s phone was that of two homeless men fighting over a bike.
The Martin family legal team took umbrage with O’Mara’s actions, stating that the attorney fabricated evidence in a follow-up interview with the Huffington Post.
From The Huffington Post:
The video, to me, is one of the clearest examples of a pure fabrication,” Jasmine Rand, managing attorney and head of the civil rights division of Parks and Crump’s South Florida office, told The Huffington Post. “I have no idea where that information came from. It’s inaccurate, and to spread that type of information on such an important case was a clear fabrication of the evidence. I think that the behavior of the defense, to me, would call into question their veracity as a whole. And if you fabricate evidence once, I don’t trust that you wouldn’t fabricate evidence twice.
As previously reported by NewsOne, “evidence” has been presented by O’Mara in a brash attempt to alter the image of Martin by linking him to guns, drug use, and a propensity for violence. O’Mara claims that Zimmerman shot and killed the 17-year-old, after Martin allegedly attacked him in February 2012 at a Florida suburban townhouse development.
Although Zimmerman appears by most accounts to have been the aggressor, steps have been taken to shape the murder of Martin as a classic case of self-defense.
Another wrinkle in the case manifested itself by way of the brother of brother Robert Zimmerman who shot down the findings of a state audio expert who analyzed a 911 called placed by a resident just before Martin was shot.
Audio expert Alan Reich wrote in a four-page report that he heard Trayvon Martin begging for his life as reported by the Orlando Sentinel early last week.
Reich added that Zimmerman put on a preacher’s voice, stating “this shall be,” in the cleaned up audio. FBI analysts say they did not hear the phrases and also said the audio quality was too poor to make a solid determination.
Robert Zimmerman spoke with CBS News’ Crimesider, saying, “Some of the witnesses [the state] intends to call seemingly relied on voodoo forensics. Experts that reach conclusions that can’t be re-created by any other person flies in the face of the very definition of science.”
Eric L. Welch Guster, managing attorney of the Guster Law Firm, gave NewsOne his expert take on O’Mara’s legal gaffe and its implications. Guster also remarked on Robert Zimmerman’s statements and their potential impact on the case as well:
Zimmerman’s legal team knows their case has holes. They are doing their best to show Trayvon Martin in the most-negative way possible.
As evidence, their desperation claiming that Trayvon was recording his friends beating up a homeless man should show the court and public that they will do anything to win, including fabricate evidence or potential evidence.
The defense team, in prior press conferences & interviews, revealed images on Trayvon’s phone of him smoking marijuana and allegedly holding a gun. Being that they lied about this video should make everyone question their ethics and trustworthiness on any issue or evidence in this case.
Zimmerman’s brother’s statement about ‘voodoo forensics’ is more evidence of their desperation. They want to discredit as much evidence in the public eye prior to trial that they can. I discount his statement as the man’s feeble attempt to help save his brother from prosecution of killing an unarmed teenaged boy.
O’Mara believes that his team’s overstatement and mishandling of evidence will not mar their case. A hearing has been set for this Thursday, when the judge in the case will determine if the audio expert’s testimony and applied techniques will remain part of the prosecution’s aims.
Despite posturing from the Zimmerman defense team and a defiant and nationally supported stance from the Martin family, the trial could play out in a variety of ways once jurors are presented with the mounds of evidence in the weeks ahead.