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Judge Denies Gag Order In Trayvon Martin Case

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(Credit: McClatchy-Tribune /Getty Images)

(Credit: McClatchy-Tribune /Getty Images)

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP/WAOK) — A Florida judge is denying prosecutors’ request for a gag order in the trial of a neighborhood watch leader charged with fatally shooting 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.

Circuit Judge Debra Nelson said in an order Monday that there was no need for a gag order at this time to ensure a fair trial for George Zimmerman.

The 29-year-old Zimmerman is charged with second-degree murder in the fatal shooting last February.

Zimmerman has pleaded not guilty and claims the shooting was self-defense under the state’s “stand your ground” law. Zimmerman and Martin got into an altercation inside a gated community in Sanford, Fla.

Prosecutors had asked for the gag order, claiming a website and social media used by Zimmerman’s attorney could influence potential jurors in the racially charged case. Attorney Mark O’Mara claimed to have made the social media sites as a way to “counter the volumes of negative publicity that surrounded Mr. Zimmerman” by the public portraying Zimmerman as a racist.

Zimmerman’s trial is set to begin June 2013.

Submitted by: Brent Yancy, Student Writer

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