Zimmerman Waives Right to Immunity Under "Stand Your Ground"

Zimmerman Waives Right to Immunity Under "Stand Your Ground" Before Trial

Zimmerman Waives Right to Immunity Under "Stand Your Ground"

George Zimmerman has waived his right to immunity under the "Stand Your Ground" defense law.

Published April 30, 2013

George Zimmerman, who is charged in the killing of unarmed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, waived his right to seek immunity under Florida's controversial "Stand Your Ground" law at a Tuesday hearing. 

But his lawyer Mark O'Mara says he may seek immunity later. 

Zimmerman, a former neighborhood watch volunteer, has pleaded not guilty, insisting that he shot the teenager in self-defense. He invoked the "Stand Your Ground" law, which allows people to use deadly force in instances where they feel threatened.

Prosecutors in the case requested that Zimmerman publicly state whether he would use the immunity defense under the "Stand Your Ground" law or waive his right to it. As the June 10 trial date approaches, prosecutors wanted the former neighborhood watch volunteer on record stating his decision, Reuters reports

Benjamin Crump, the attorney for the parents of Trayvon Martin, said that Zimmerman’s decision is an indication of the weakness of his case,

“The fact that George Zimmerman has decided to now waive his right to a stand your ground hearing before trial is very telling of his defense or lack thereof,” Crump said, in a statement.

“We believe the defense’s decision to waive a pre-trial hearing and to merge the Stand Your Ground hearing into the trial is to prevent putting George Zimmerman on the stand and to preclude the public and the potential jury pool from previewing the many inconsistences in George Zimmerman’s story.”

Back in March, O'Mara said in a hearing that Zimmerman would not seek immunity under Florida's "Stand Your Ground" law. He would instead allow a jury to decide his fate at his second-degree murder trial for killing unarmed teen Trayvon Martin.

In his statement, Crump added: “It has and continues to be our position that the Stand Your Ground immunity statute does not apply to the actions of George Zimmerman on the night that he shot and killed Trayvon Martin.”

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(Photo: Joe Burbank - Pool/Getty Images)

Written by Natelege Whaley and Jonathan P. Hicks


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