On Friday, Sept. 14, the Orlando Sentinel stated that in response to the defense seeking Trayvon Martin's social media records and school records, which could show behavioral issues and more about the deceased, that the prosecution will release additional records on the accused next week.
The family of the deceased has called the defense's request for personal records as "character assassination" and a "witch hunt," but any criminal defense attorney worth their salt calls it putting on a complete defense for their accused client.
And since George Zimmerman's own life hangs in the balance in a court of law, it seems prudent for the facts to come out about each male's public and private life and records--especially if something in those records could shed better light on the shooting death.
Naturally, an attorney for the Martin family is saying the request for records which may show the Sanford, Florida shooting victim in a negative light is "an attack" on the deceased, as HLN reports.
Yet if nothing derogatory is found on the dead youth, then what harm is there in requesting records that show him as an exemplary young man without any known gang ties or issues about conduct unbecoming?
Wednesday, Sept. 19 appears to be the date the public will get that answer, with the state slated to release their last batch of evidence regarding the shooting that took the life of the youth on school suspension, and the defense finally obtaining all the data from schools sought 10 days earlier.
And while it is generally the case that school records are not released to the public at large, this is also a nationally headline-generating case with racial repercussions that appear to dictate deviating from the norm in order to keep the public better informed about the facts.
George Zimmerman will be tried in a court of law where facts and evidence will either support an acquittal or prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. But he is being tried in the court of public opinion now. And a federal air marshal, who happens to be a friend of the accused, said on the Dr. Phil TV show that some character facts need to be repeated now, the Kansas City Star reports.
Friday, Sept. 14, 10:13 a.m. EDT: Trayvon's dad: He saved my life: "I think the most heart-wrenching part is knowing that he saved my life and on that fatal day I wasn't there to save his life," Tracy Martin said in a Dr. Phil show interview this week, describing the time his 9-year-old son dragged him from the house to save him from a fire.
Thursday, Sept. 13, 10:45 a.m. EDT: In an episode set to air nationally on Friday, Dr. Phil McGraw offers counseling to Tracy Martin and Sybrina Fulton, the Orlando Sentinel reports. In a statement, McGraw said of the parents of the slain teen, "They're left with the questions about what should they or could they have done to prevent this. They're trying to make sense out of this tragic loss, and they're lost."
Wednesday, Sept. 12, 11:05 a.m. EDT: Zimmerman's friend writes book to defend "most hated man in America": Mark Osterman, 44, the friend George Zimmerman's wife, Shellie, first called for help on Feb. 26, when her husband shot unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin, has written a book about his "heartbroken and devastated" friend, the Miami Herald reports.
Sept. 11, 9:13 a.m. EDT: Zimmerman lawyers accused of "witch hunt": After last week's announcement by George Zimmerman's defense team that they had subpoenaed Florida teen Trayvon Martin's entire school file from the Miami-Dade public school district -- including test scores, any disciplinary actions and attendance records-- Trayvon's attorney Ben Crump told Reuters, "I think certainly it is a witch hunt to try to find something to attack the character of a dead child, and it's completely irrelevant because his school records had nothing to do with him [George Zimmerman] shooting Trayvon Martin in the heart on February 26."