George Zimmerman decided not to take the stand at his trial on Wednesday as the defense in his second-degree murder trial rested.
Asked by Judge Debra Nelson if he intended to testify on his own behalf, Zimmerman replied no.
'Yes,' he answered when the judge asked if this was his final decision.
Nelson ruled out an acquittal and said that she would leave it for the jury to decide 29-year-old Zimmerman’s fate.
Prosecutors contend that Zimmerman is a reckless vigilante who intentionally profiled Martin and pursued him against the police dispatcher’s advice before killing the unarmed black teenager.
They also contend that Zimmerman was frustrated over a recent rash of break-ins and over his thwarted career as a police officer. But Zimmerman’s lawyers say he shot Martin in self-defense after the teenager jumped him and began pounding his head on the sidewalk.
The day began with Nelson reportedly dealing a blow to the defense by barring the jury from seeing text messages on Martin’s cell phone about fighting and buying a gun. She also ruled out a virtual reenactment of the battle that left the teenager dead.
Prosecutors had earlier argued that Martin’s texts were irrelevant and could be taken out of context. They also reportedly claimed the computer animation the defense was pushing could mislead jurors. Nelson agreed, but permitted a different reenactment video to be played in its closing arguments.
Defense attorney Don West had reportedly argued the texts were evidence that Martin was a skilled fighter. The defense also pointed to a Facebook message from Martin’s brother Demetrius in which he asks, 'When you gonna teach me how to fight?'
The latest developments came a day after forensic pathologist Vincent DiMaio testified Martin was on top when Zimmerman fired the fatal shot. But DiMaio, a key defense witness, also conceded he couldn’t say who threw the first punch.
Prosecutors also played a call Zimmerman made to a police dispatcher after noticing Martin shortly before their fatal confrontation on February 26, 2012.
'F---ing punks,' Zimmerman said. 'These a--holes, they always get away.'
The jurors could reportedly get the case as early as today after both sides make their closing arguments.
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