published Thursday, July 11th, 2013

Jury in Zimmerman case may consider other charges

  • photo
    George Zimmerman sits in Seminole circuit court during his trial in Sanford, Fla., in this file photo.
    Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

George Zimmerman's attorney strongly objected to a prosecution proposal that third-degree murder be included in the jury instructions.

Defense attorney Don West on Thursday called the proposal "outrageous," given that it is premised on the idea that Zimmerman committed child abuse since 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was underage when he was fatally shot.

Judge Debra Nelson says she will rule on the proposal later. The judge, however, agreed with the prosecution that jurors could consider manslaughter as a lesser charge.

West said he wanted the six jurors to only consider the second-degree murder charge or not guilty.

Zimmerman is pleading not guilty to second-degree murder. He claims he shot Martin in self-defense last year.

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