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June 24th, 2013
09:13 AM ET

The Zimmerman trial: What you need to know

By HLNTV.com Staff

(CNN) - A neighborhood watch captain accused of killing an unarmed teen goes on trial Monday, in a case that sparked fresh debate about race relations and gun laws.

George Zimmerman is accused of fatally shooting 17-year-old Trayvon Martin on February 26, 2012, in Sanford, Florida.

Martin was black, and Zimmerman identifies himself as Hispanic.

Zimmerman is charged with second-degree murder. He says he shot the unarmed teen in self-defense.

In a CNN poll released Monday morning, 62% of respondents say the charges against Zimmerman are probably or definitely true.

Opening statements begin Monday and are expected to last several hours.

A jury of six women will decide Zimmerman's fate, which has already drawn some scrutiny from the public about whether he will get a fair trial.

Martin's parents will be in the courtroom, and are expected to deliver a statement before the proceedings begin.

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soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. mac

    I have something to say im not going to punctuate cause i want to make this quick i am black im not a racist but our country is a joke not for european americans but african americans first off the jury selection was a hoax it was not fair to trayvons family having an all white jury there couldn't be fairness due to the fact that sanford has always been notorious for racism my guess is that those women felt the same way zimmermann did but the thing is they didnt care about his life just like anyone else with fair skin doesn't there should never have been a jury of same race especially opposite of the victim this is something continuous.and for any one who has something stupid or irrelevant to say you wouldn't understand you have never been oppressed in any way nobody turns you down for a job because of skin color or harassed you when you have a nice car and you become profiled my question is where does all of this hate comes from its been hundreds of years of torture discrimination violence for what nobody asked to be slaves or a product to be sold if there is something tell me because theres no race in this country that hasn't committed a crime or done wrong so why all the hate towards blacks trying to live life like everyone else im clueless

    July 14, 2013 at 2:41 am | Report abuse |
  2. USMC1371

    Not guilty! !!!!!! Good thing justice is blind. The shame is we never hear about all the young dying at the hands of their own race. All the loss and no one cares until the skin tones don't match.

    July 13, 2013 at 11:05 pm | Report abuse |
  3. tom

    Let's back up. It's after dark, in a neighborhood with a lot of breakins.... Neighborhood watch looks for anything unusual. Parents are expected to be responsible to not let their kids roam around outdoors after its dark.... I blame the parents of the dead victim for their loose taps on their son..... now...... maybe some other parents will make sure their kids are home where they belong when it gets dark and the hoods or thugs are out to break in other homes so they can buy drugs or whatever. No sympathy from me...... actually I think the parents of the dead kid should be disciplined. Are they going to let the rest of their kids run around outside at night? I never could do that when I grew up...my parents kept me nice and safe in our house.... sorry sorry sorry..... learn the hard way.

    June 26, 2013 at 8:41 pm | Report abuse |
  4. ray friday

    As a retried security officer , the first thing you must do is to IDENTIFY YOURSELF. As a security officer , we follow the same protocol just like the police do ,"what would you do if some one come up to you with a gun ????????? He did not do anything and was not wearing any identification on him.

    June 26, 2013 at 2:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • tom

      Let's back up. It's after dark, in a neighborhood with a lot of breakins.... Neighborhood watch looks for anything unusual. Parents are expected to be responsible to not let their kids roam around outdoors after its dark.... I blame the parents of the dead victim for their loose taps on their son..... now...... maybe some other parents will make sure their kids are home where they belong when it gets dark and the hoods or thugs are out to break in other homes so they can buy drugs or whatever. No sympathy from me...... actually I think the parents of the dead kid should be disciplined. Are they going to let the rest of their kids run around outside at night? I never could do that when I grew up...my parents kept me nice and safe in our house.... sorry sorry sorry..... learn the hard way.

      June 26, 2013 at 8:42 pm | Report abuse |
  5. BIG SHIZ

    He's done for,the prosecution gots evidence up there sleeves.

    June 24, 2013 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • USMC1371

      Have you watched any of the trial? Guessing not...after the star whitness got done telling her made up stories and looking mentality challenged the defence can sleep walk threw the rest.

      July 2, 2013 at 7:19 am | Report abuse |