The 2012 slaying of Florida teen Trayvon Martin has been one of the most-explosive cases in recent history. With respective evidence mounting from both prosecutors and the lead attorney for former night watchman George Zimmerman, the defense is making a bold attempt to alter the image of Martin by linking him to a series of controversial images and texts.
Lawyer Mark O’Mara appeared on Fox News Thursday afternoon to present new evidence depicting a more violent side of the teenager. Photos allegedly lifted from Martin’s cell phone show a Black person’s hand holding a firearm (pictured below), images of marijuana plants, and texts that suggest the teen was in a fight.
“If Trayvon Martin’s propensity for violence becomes relevant, then I think the jury can consider the fact that he has several pictures of a gun,” said O’Mara who wants the courts to consider the photograph as evidence.
Eric L. Welch Guster, managing attorney of the Guster Law Firm, spoke with NewsOne regarding the unfolding scenario. Guster says O’Mara’s tactic is an expected salvo in a high-profile case such as this.
It is very common for defense attorneys to strike back via media before and during a trial. The prosecution has released its version of evidence in their case and the defense is doing the same. Unless the judge issues a gag order, the defense will continue to “put their case out there” for the public to view and I am sure it is their hope for potential jurors to see the information. They are aware that potential jurors have heard evidence via news reports in this case and they are working to offset the damage done by those reports.
They want to show that Trayvon has a propensity for violence. That is admissible in court because it can show how Trayvon typically would act in certain situations and show that Zimmerman may have acted in self-defense against someone who was typically known for violence. In self-defense cases this is a common theme “He/she was typically violent and was violent in this situation too, therefore I have to shoot/hurt/kill that person”
Unfortunately, Guster believes this move from O’Mara certainly helps the defense’s case, because it may sway potential jurors and shatter the idea that Martin was an innocent high school student.
Watch the O’Mara interview here:
While Trayvon Martin allegedly wasn’t perfect, much like any other 18-year-old, attempts have been made to slander him before. That doesn’t discount the murky circumstances that led to his death, nor does it take Zimmerman off the hook for ignoring authorities and taking justice in to his own hands.
As this case continues to unveil itself further, it will be interesting to witness what evidence jurors will be presented with ahead of their deliberation.