Tense Exchanges: Zimmerman Judge Will Allow Jury to Consider Lesser Charge
In the latest turn of events in the George Zimmerman murder trial, the prosecution team argued that the jury should be allowed to consider lesser charges against Zimmerman in their deliberations. Judge Debra Nelson agreed, ruling that she would allow the jury to take the charges into consideration.
This twist is not what Zimmerman's defense team had hoped for or anticipated, with attorney Don West arguing on Thursday that the state charged Zimmerman with second-degree murder, and should be forced to prove guilt on that charge beyond a reasonable doubt. West called the consideration of third-degree murder "outrageous," but consistent with how the trial has proceeded thus far.
"It's not fair to me, it's not fair to Mr. Zimmerman or Mr. O'Mara, or to the court," he stated emphatically to the judge.
If convicted of a lesser charge of manslaughter or third-degree murder, Zimmerman could still serve up to 15 years in prison, according to Fox News reporter Phil Keating, who is covering the trial from Sanford, Florida.
Watch Don West challenge the judge, below: