SANFORD, Fla. - Jurors in the George Zimmerman murder trial have been dismissed for the day after listening to opening statements from the prosecution and the defense.
Judge Debra Nelson had the jurors leave Monday as they were listening to the fourth witness for the prosecution. The witness was a custodian of police dispatch calls.
During her testimony, prosecutors started playing police calls Zimmerman had made in the months before he fatally shot 17-year-old Trayvon Martin last year.
Defense attorneys objected, claiming the calls were irrelevant.
The judge said she would address the matter Tuesday and sent the jurors to their hotel where they are being sequestered for the duration of the trial that could last up to a month.
Prosecutor John Guy's first words to jurors Monday were the "f-word" followed by "punks." He was quoting from a call Zimmerman made to a police dispatcher as he followed Martin through the gated community where he lived.
Guy then recounted how Zimmerman followed Martin, a confrontation ensued and Martin was fatally shot in the chest.
Zimmerman's defense attorneys said in opening statements that he fatally shot Martin in self-defense.
Defense attorney Don West told jurors Monday that Zimmerman was being viciously attacked when he shot the 17-year-old Miami-area teen.
West outlined the defense case moments after a prosecutor said in his opening statements that Zimmerman was profiling Martin shortly before he confronted the teen last year.
Zimmerman is pleading not guilty to second-degree murder.
The case attracted worldwide attention following protests that erupted when Zimmerman wasn't arrested for 44 days after the shooting.
Martin's mother asked Monday for members of the public to pray for her family as the trial begins.
Sybrina Fulton said that she didn't want any other mothers to have to go through what she is experiencing. She spoke just minutes before the opening statements.
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