World News

Closing Arguments Expected in Zimmerman Trial

The defense for shooting suspect George Zimmerman in the southeastern U.S. state of Florida is expected to give closing arguments Friday as an all-female jury considers whether he is guilty of murder in the killing of a black teenager last year.

Once the defense rests, the prosecution will have one more chance at rebuttal, and then jurors will begin deliberating their verdict.

Zimmerman, who is Hispanic, has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder.

The jury of six women will decide whether he is acquitted, or convicted of either second-degree murder or manslaughter. 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 Trayvon Martin and called police. Zimmerman - a neighborhood watch volunteer - later 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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