Evidence released in Trayvon Martin death
Published: Friday, May 18, 2012
Updated: Friday, May 18, 2012 12:05
A trove of evidence collected for George Zimmerman’s highly anticipated second-degree murder trial was made public Thursday, including an autopsy report documenting Trayvon’s single gunshot wound to the chest.
Conflicting witnesses described agonizing calls for help, and some thought they heard two shots.
The witness statements include one eyewitness who said he saw a man in a red shirt getting hit by someone else. When he returned for a second look, the man who was hitting the other was dead.
“I heard yelling out back in the grass area,” the unnamed witness said. “... I opened door and saw a guy on the ground getting hit by another man on top of him in a ... position hitting a guy in a red sweatshirt or red top. I said I was calling the cops and ran upstairs then heard a gun shot. ... The guy on top who was sitting the guy ... layed out on the grass as he had been shot.”
Another witness saw a “broad man” on top hitting another. The evidence list shows Zimmerman wore a size 38. His shirt was red.
“First we heard like a howling sound. And then the second time we heard a more-clearly ‘help’ sound,” the witness said. “I know after seeing the TV of what’s happening — comparing their pictures — I think Zimmerman is definitely on top because of his size.”
The documents released Thursday also include Trayvon’s autopsy report, which showed he had a single gunshot wound to the upper chest. It also showed the 5-foot-11 teen weighed 158 lbs, smoked marijuana and had a 1/4 x 1/8 inch abrasion on his left fourth finger.
Special prosecutor Angela B. Corey, the state attorney for Duval, Clay and Nassau counties in Florida, created a special website for media to access 67 CDs of information collected in the wake of Trayvon’s death.
The documents include reports from five Sanford, Fla., police investigators and recorded statements from 23 witnesses. One witness, records show, was interviewed five times.
Another female witness told Sanford Detective Chris Serino she was concerned for her safety because Zimmerman knew where she lived, lived in her neighborhood and could come back to harm her, according to a police report.
Serino replied: The person we’re talking about is not somebody who’s going to do something like that.
Also included are cell phone records for Zimmerman, Trayvon Martin and the girl Trayvon chatted with in the moments before his death. In a court filing earlier this week, prosecutors said they also plan to present Zimmerman’s cell phone text messages, photos and videos from the weeks after Trayvon’s controversial death.
Not included: his three statements to police or the video-taped reenactment he did for detectives the day after he killed Trayvon. Under Florida law, confessions are exempt from public records laws.
The evidence also includes medical records that show Zimmerman had a broken nose the day after his altercation with Trayvon. Those could boost his claim that he acted in self-defense when he shot Trayvon in the chest, but the Martin family’s attorney says they only raise more questions.
The Fire Rescue report shows Zimmerman had a “small laceration on the back of his head” and a bloody nose. He also had “small abrasions” on his forehead.
“All injuries have minor bleeding,” the report said. He denied further medical assistance.
“This is suspicious. If he had these injuries, why didn’t they take him to the hospital?” said attorney Benjamin Crump, who led the charge for the case to be reexamined by outside law enforcement agencies. “This happened at about 7:30. In the police surveillance video taken 30 minutes later, you can see with your own eyes that the Fire Rescue people didn’t so much as put a Band-Aid on his head.”