Trayvon Martin's Dad Differs With Cop's Account
SANFORD, Fla. (AP) - Trayvon Martin's father has testified that he never denied it was his son's voice in screams for help on a 911 call.
Tracy Martin said Monday that he merely said he couldn't tell if it was Trayvon Martin after his first time listening to the call.
Tracy Martin's testimony came after the lead investigator testified that Tracy Martin had answered "no" when he asked if the screams belonged to Trayvon Martin.
Convincing the jury of whose voice is on the tape is important to both sides because it would help jurors decide who was the aggressor in the confrontation that left Martin dead. Relatives of Martin's and George Zimmerman's have offered conflicting opinions about who is heard screaming.
Zimmerman is pleading not guilty to second-degree murder, claiming self-defense.
THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.
The lead detective in George Zimmerman's second-degree murder case testified Monday that Trayvon Martin's father told him that screams for help on a 911 call weren't his son's.
Officer Chris Serino was called by the defense to testify about a meeting with Martin's father in the days after the Miami teen was fatally shot by Zimmerman last year.
At the meeting, when Tracy Martin listened to the 911 recording and was asked if it was his son, Tracy Martin said "no," Serino said.
"He looked away and under his breath he said 'no'," Serino said.
Tracy Martin was in the courtroom as Serino recounted the meeting.
Under cross examination, prosecutor Bernie de la Rionda suggested that Tracy Martin may have been in denial about his son's death and uttered, 'no."
"It could be perceived as denial," Serino said.
The investigator's testimony was just the latest effort to determine who was crying for help on the 911 calls. Convincing the jury of whose voice is on the tapes is important to both sides because it would help jurors decide who was the aggressor in the confrontation that left Martin dead. Relatives of Martin's and Zimmerman's have offered conflicting opinions on previous days about who is heard screaming.
Another investigator, Office Doris Singleton, backed up Serino's account of Tracy Martin's initial reaction to the 911 call.
A series of Zimmerman's friends on Monday testified that the screams on the recording were their friend, and the 911 call was played multiple times in the courtroom.
After the call was played for Sondra Osterman, defense attorney Mark O'Mara asked who it was.
"Yes, definitely. It's Georgie," said Osterman, who testified she first met Zimmerman in 2006 while working with him at a mortgage company. Osterman and her husband, Mark, describe themselves as the best friends of Zimmerman and his wife.
The emergency call captured the confrontation between Zimmerman and Martin shortly before Zimmerman fatally shot the teen. Zimmerman's mother and uncle testified last Friday it was Zimmerman screaming. Martin's mother and brother also took the witness stand last Friday to say the voice belongs to Martin.
Zimmerman himself once said during a police interview that the screams didn't sound like him, though he and his family later said the screams were his.
Prosecutors had wanted to introduce as witnesses two audio experts who said the voice belonged to Martin and ruled out Zimmerman's voice. But Judge Debra Nelson prohibited the audio experts from testifying, saying their methods were unreliable.
Zimmerman, a former neighborhood watch volunteer, has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and says he shot Martin in self-defense during a scuffle in the townhome complex where he lived. Martin was there visiting his father and his father's fiancee.
Prosecutors contend that Zimmerman was profiling Martin and perceived the teen as someone suspicious in the neighborhood, which had been the site of a series of break-ins.
Prosecutors were also seeking Monday to stop defense attorneys from presenting an animated depiction of the fatal fight. Their motion requests that the animation not be mentioned or played at Zimmerman's trial, claiming it would only confuse jurors. They said the animation doesn't show a murder weapon, only approximates positions based on witness accounts and artificially depicts lighting conditions.
Defense attorneys hadn't immediately filed a response. Prosecutors said in their motion that the animation commissioned by the defense was created by employees of the animator re-enacting the fight wearing motion-capture suits.
Under cross-examination, prosecutor Bernie de la Rionda implied that Sondra Osterman and her husband, Mark, had a stake in the outcome of the trial because they had written a book about Zimmerman's case and were donating the proceeds to their friend.
Mark Osterman took the witness stand after his wife to testify about how Zimmerman had chosen and purchased his firearm. He testified that Zimmerman could shoot with both hands, and he also said he recommended keeping the gun loaded.
He said it was Zimmerman's voice screaming when the 911 call was played for him in the courtroom.
Former co-worker Geri Russo also testified it was Zimmerman yelling on the call, as did John Donnelly and Leanne Benjamin, a married couple who became good friends with Zimmerman and his wife.
The prosecutor also played for Sondra Osterman a nonemergency police call Zimmerman made to report Martin walking through his neighborhood. In the call, Zimmerman uses the words, "F------ punks. These a-------. They always get away." Sondra Osterman identified the voice as Zimmerman's.
When asked by O'Mara if she detected ill will, spite or hatred in his voice, she answered no.
Prosecutors must show that Zimmerman acted with ill will, spite or a depraved mind in order to get a second-degree murder conviction.
Defense attorneys also called the owner of a gym where Zimmerman had gone to lose weight to explain to jurors the mixed-martial arts fighting method called "ground and pound." Defense attorneys have said that Martin slammed Zimmerman's head into the sidewalk while he was on top of him in "a ground and pound" maneuver. To demonstrate the move, gym owner Adam Pollock straddled O'Mara on the courtroom floor. Pollock testified that Zimmerman trained in the form of fighting known as grappling but was an unaccomplished fighter.
"He was about a 1," said Pollock when asked to rank Zimmerman's athletic skill on a scale of 1 to 10.
>>>Follow Kyle Hightower on Twitter at http://twitter.com/khightower
>>>Follow Mike Schneider on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MikeSchneiderAP
(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>
CLE ELUM, Wash. - UPDATE: Washington State Department of Transportation says I-90 at Ellensburg is back open following a major crash Saturday morning. Westbound lanes were closed for several hours Saturday. Washington State Patrol urges drivers to use caution as conditions can change quickly.>>
POST FALLS, Idaho - Billie Swanson has her hands full. Taking care of two boys could be a full-time job. “Kids grow in and out of stuff so quickly and it's a nice place to go and to have that option and some extra money in our pockets,” Swanson said. Swanson is taking about Trader Tots Consignment Store in Post Falls. It’s a place she’s gone to in the past to sell her kids old clothes and buy new ones. That is, until recently. “They>>
KOOTENAI COUNTY, Idaho. - The Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office arrested 47-year-old Brett K. Anderson of Post Falls, ID Thursday after he was reported to have been hitting on-coming cars with a large poles sticking out of his own vehicle in the area of N. Meyer Rd. and Hayden Ave. When deputies arrived on scene, they discovered Anderson had stolen stole several 30-40’ long pieces of irrigation pipe from a nearby farm field and was>>
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - A Rhode Island state senator has been arrested on charges of video voyeurism and extortion. State police say Republican Sen. Nicholas Kettle was arrested Friday and was being taken to their headquarters to be processed. They say they're unsure when Kettle will appear in court.>>
PULLMAN, Wash. - Pullman police have arrested a therapist and psychologist on suspicion of sexually assault a patient last month. Police say a woman reported that psychologist Dean Funabiki, PhD, sexually assault her during a therapy session in his office. Swabs were collected from the woman during a sexual assault examination, and a search warrant was obtained to collect DNA from Dr. Funabiki.>>
KHQ.COM - Has anyone else been wondering... didn't Russel Wilson and Ciara have a baby recently? Where are the photos of their beautiful baby girl? Well the reason no one has seen their baby girl Sienna, is because no photos of their daughter have been released, until now. For the first time Ciara shared photos of their brown-eyed, curly haired little girl saying, "Today is just the beginning, I’m sharing something near and dear to my heart with you...">>
SWITZERLAND - When it comes to cooking fresh lobster, the Swiss are now siding with the seafood. A law goes into effect March 1 banning the common cooking method of tossing a live lobster into a pot of boiling water, quickly killing the crustacean. According to USA Today, the practice is being outlawed because the Swiss say lobsters can sense pain. It's the first national legislation of its kind in the world that calls for a more humane>>
WILMINGTON, N.Y. (AP) - Police on Wednesday were trying to piece together how a 49-year-old skier whose disappearance sparked a massive search on a snowy New York mountainside ended up six days later in California, confused and still in ski clothes. Toronto firefighter Constantinos "Danny" Filippidis told investigators he doesn't know what happened after he was reported missing Wednesday, Feb. 7, from Whiteface Mountain during an annual ski trip with colleagues.>>
A fire alarm that was sounded during a Florida high school shooting this week added to the chaos of the day. When a fire alarm goes off, students typically flee the building. During active shooter situations, they hunker down in classrooms. Both scenarios occurred in Florida, creating a dilemma for students and staff. Emergency responders say there is no single accepted set of best practices for responding to active shooter situations, and the pr...>>
ORLANDO, Fla. - Woody, Buzz and the rest of the toy box will come to life at Wald Disney World in Florida this summer. Disney confirmed Friday that their upcoming Toy Story Land will officially open to guests on June 30. Located at Disney's Hollywood Studios, the 11-acre land will include two new attractions and a new entrance to the existing Toy Story Mania attraction. Guests will 'shrink' down to the size of toys while riding the new Slinky Dog>>
PYEONGCHANG, South Korea (AP) - The Latest on the Pyeongchang Olympics (all times local): 1:15 p.m. Pyeongchang Olympics organizers say a Korean man in his 50s has died in one of the media villages at the games. Organizing committee spokesman Sung Baik-you says the manwas working for a consortium of Japanese broadcasters during the games. The man was not responsive when he was found in his room by a co-worker. Sung says police were called and the Korea...>>
NEW YORK (AP) - It doesn't take much to slow down the New York subway system. On Friday afternoon, one bundle of fur stopped train service on a transit line between Brooklyn and Manhattan. Officer George Tsourovakas (tsoo-roh-VAH'-kahs) says a poodle named Dakota got away from a Brooklyn park run near the Manhattan Bridge and dashed into the York Street station, making it to the tracks of the F train and running southbound on the northbound tracks. To spare the animal...>>
PARKLAND, Fla. (AP) - Authorities say the former student accused of fatally shooting 17 people at a Florida high school had excelled at marksmanship in the school's air-rifle program, which received a grant from the National Rifle Association Foundation. The NRA Foundation gave nearly $2.2 million to schools across 30 states as of 2016, the latest year in which its federal tax filings are publicly available. The money was used by the gun group to support youth shooting clubs and other>>
BUTTE, Mont. (AP) - Authorities say a man who was last seen in late January was found dead at an old mine in western Montana. The Montana Standard reports 50-year-old Frank Piazzola's body was found at the base of the Anselmo gallows head frame in Butte on Thursday, and investigators believe he fell to his death. He was last seen Jan. 28. Butte-Silver Bow Coroner Lee LaBreche says an autopsy and toxicology tests are planned. The Anselmo Mine Yard once was an ...>>
PARKLAND, Fla. (AP) - The Latest on the school shooting that killed 17 people in Florida (all times local): 7:15 p.m. President Donald Trump has met with victims of a school shooting who are recovering at a Florida hospital. He's praising the "incredible" work of doctors, nurses and first responders who helped victims after the shooting. Trump is calling the quick response of medical personnel "record-setting" and says some vict...>>
MEXICO CITY (AP) - A powerful earthquake has shaken south and central Mexico, causing people to flee buildings and office towers in the country's capital, and setting off quake alert systems. Crowds of people gathered on central Reforma Avenue in Mexico City as the ground shook. The U.S. Geological Survey put the quake's preliminary magnitude at 7.5 and said its epicenter was 2 kilometers southeast of Pinotepa in Oaxaca state. It had a depth of 43 kilometers. ...>>