Zimmerman's Brother Says Civil Rights Lawsuit "Won't Be Flattering" to Trayvon

Robert Zimmerman says what was "off-limits in a criminal trial would come into play in a civil case."

Posted: 07/29/2013 10:12 AM EDT

Robert Zimmerman says that a civil rights case brought against his brother, George Zimmerman, would bring on a deeper battle between his family and Trayvon Martin's loved ones.

"A myriad of things that were off-limits in a criminal trial would come into play in a civil case. Specifically, things that might not be very flattering to Trayvon or his family," Robert Zimmerman Jr. said in an email to the Huffington Post.

During the second-degree murder trial of George Zimmerman, the Florida judge over the case ruled that Zimmerman’s lawyers could not use Trayvon’s text messages or pictures of drugs and guns on his cellphone as evidence in the trial.

Zimmerman also added that he doesn't expect a wrongful death suit. "There is the potential assertion of civil immunity before the case would even start things that were off limits during the case might also come up then. Also, a criminal acquittal goes a long way to supporting a civil immunity claim." 

Huffington Post reports:

To win in a criminal trial, prosecutors need to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. Plaintiffs in a civil case do not have that burden.

However, filing a case would be difficult because of Florida's stand your ground law. The statute provides criminal and civil immunity to anyone who uses deadly force in a situation in which one has a reasonable fear of imminent death or great bodily injury.

A judge would have to determine whether the law applies in this case. If it does, Zimmerman would be released from liability and would also be able to collect attorney fees, court costs and related expenses.

Read full story here

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 (Photo: Joe Burbank-Pool/Getty Images)

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