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Courts / Law

Zimmerman Jurors Shown Crime Scene Photos, Hear Evidence About Neighborhood Watch Programs

Gary W. Green
Orlando Sentinel

Jurors in George Zimmerman's second-degree murder trial got their first glimpse of the crime scene Tuesday. It was an emotional moment in the courtroom when prosecutors showed photos of teenager Trayvon Martin, who was fatally shot in a scuffle with Zimmerman.

One photo showed Martin's body, dressed in a hoodie, lying face-down in the dark and illuminated by a flashlight. Other photos showed his face and chest wound.

Some jurors and on-lookers were visibly upset; Martin's father Tracy Martin walked out of the courtroom.

Jurors heard testimony from police officer Anthony Raimondo, who was one of the first on the scene and administered C-P-R to Martin.

"I breathed for [Martin]. I tried to," Raimondo told the court.

Prosecutors also presented photos of Zimmerman's injuries to his nose and the back of his head. Other evidence collected from the crime scene was shown to jurors, including the 9 mm Kel-Tec handgun Zimmerman used to shoot Martin and a can of watermelon-flavored Arizona iced tea the teenager had bought at a 7-11 before the confrontation.

Earlier in the day a Sanford police staff member who organized a neighborhood watch program described Zimmerman as someone who seemed like he wanted to make his community better.

Wendy Dorival testified Zimmerman's homeowner's association had asked him to contact her about Neighborhood Watch, after the neighborhood had experienced several burglaries.

Dorival said she invited Zimmerman to join the department's Citizens on Patrol program, but he declined.

She said she knew Zimmerman had majored in criminal justice in college.

"He was very professional with me," said Dorival.

"He seemed a little meek to me. He seemed like he really wanted to make changes in his community to make it better."

Dorival described Neighborhood Watch groups as the "eyes and ears" of police, but they are not instructed to pursue or engage anyone suspicious. She said Citizens on Patrol volunteers undergo four to five weeks of training and wear polo shirt-style uniforms.

Prosecutors say Zimmerman is a "vigilante" who profiled, followed and murdered the unarmed black teen Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman says Martin attacked him, and he fired in self-defense. The trial is expected to last up to four weeks.

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