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Jury Begins Deliberations in Zimmerman Trial

  • VOA News

Assistant state attorney Bernie de la Rionda presents evidence to the jury in the state's closing arguments against George Zimmerman, Sanford, Florida, July 11, 2013.

Assistant state attorney Bernie de la Rionda presents evidence to the jury in the state's closing arguments against George Zimmerman, Sanford, Florida, July 11, 2013.

An undated handout photo released by the Martin family public relations representative of Trayvon Martin.

An undated handout photo released by the Martin family public relations representative of Trayvon Martin.

A jury of six women in Florida has started deliberating the verdict on whether shooting suspect George Zimmerman is guilty of murder in the 2012 killing of black teenager Trayvon Martin.

Zimmerman's defense lawyers gave closing arguments Friday in Sanford, north of Orlando, followed by a final rebuttal by the prosecution team.

The all-female jury will decide whether he is acquitted or convicted of either second-degree murder or manslaughter. Zimmerman, who is Hispanic, has pleaded not guilty. A murder conviction could lead to a life sentence, while manslaughter in Florida carries a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison.

Zimmerman was driving in his neighborhood when he saw 17-year-old Martin and called police. Zimmerman — a neighborhood watch volunteer — got out of his vehicle and followed Martin, whom he considered a suspicious person. A confrontation and struggle followed, ending with Zimmerman shooting Martin.

Zimmerman was driving in his neighborhood when he saw 17-year-old Trayvon Martin and called police. Zimmerman - a neighborhood watch volunteer - got out of his vehicle and followed Martin, who he considered a suspicious person. A confrontation and struggle followed, ending with Zimmerman shooting Martin.

Zimmerman says the shooting was in self-defense, with Martin slamming Zimmerman's head on the concrete pavement as he fired his gun. The prosecution says Zimmerman profiled the teen and assumed he was up to no good.

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