Judge Says Jurors Can Hear About Marijuana In Trayvon Martin's System

By: CBS News (Posted by Melissa Brunner)
By: CBS News (Posted by Melissa Brunner)

(CBS/AP) SANFORD, Fla - The judge in the George Zimmerman murder trial will allow jurors to hear evidence that shooting victim Trayvon Martin had small amounts of marijuana in his body when he died.

Judge Debra Nelson on Monday denied a prosecution request to keep out parts of a toxicology report that shows the teen had marijuana in his system when he was shot to death by Zimmerman, a Sanford, Fla. neighborhood watch volunteer, on Feb. 26, 2012.

Prosecutor John Guy argued the information would be "unduly prejudicial" without demonstrating "that it may have had an impact and what that impact may have been."

But defense attorneys said it was relevant since Zimmerman believed Martin was under the influence at the time he spotted him in his neighborhood.

"It looks like he's on drugs or something," Zimmerman said in a call placed to non-emergency dispatchers to report Martin as a suspicious person in his community.

Defense attorney Don West also referred to comments not heard by the jury, made by a medical examiner who conducted Martin's autopsy. Dr. Shiping Bao initially said the levels of marijuana detected in Martin's system wouldn't have impacted the teen, but that he later changed his opinion after conducting more research.

"Now his testimony is 'Yes, there was sufficient THC in Mr. Martin's system that it would have had some effect,'" West said.


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