The fatal gunshot wound sustained by Trayvon Martin indicates that he was likely atop George Zimmerman when the gun was fired, according to testimony from a forensic expert.
Vincent Di Maio, a forensic pathologist and expert on gunshot wounds, testified that the shot that killed Martin passed through the Florida teen’s clothing as it hung 2 to 4 inches from his skin, which is an indication that Martin was over Zimmerman and leaning forward.
"If you’re lying on your back, the clothing is going to be against your chest," Di Maio stated. "So the fact that we know the clothing was 2 to 4 inches away is consistent with someone leaning over the person doing the shooting."
Di Maio, who has written and co-authored several articles and a book on the subject of gunshot wounds, agreed with the firearms examiner’s conclusion that the weapon was fired against Martin’s clothing. He explained the gun was discharged 2 to 4 inches away from the skin, based on powder tattooing around the wound.
"My opinion is that that muzzle of the gun was 2 to 4 inches away from the skin," Di Maio testified. "So, the barrel of the gun was against the clothing, but the clothing itself had to be 2 to 4 inches away from the body at the time Mr. Martin was shot."
DiMaio also noted that if the clothing was wet, it would be heavier and hang more. It was raining heavily on the night of the fatal shooting in early 2012. He also said that if wet clothes are taken into evidence and packaged in plastic bags as opposed to paper bags, it can ruin the samples as "bacteria multiplies and you get mold and it stinks to high heaven."
Zimmerman’s attorneys contend DNA evidence found on Martin's clothing was degraded since it was not packaged properly.
During cross examination, prosecutor Bernie de la Rionda went after Di Maio over his testimony.
"You can't testify who threw the first punch, or whether there was a first punch thrown," de la Rionda stated. Di Maio answered, "That's correct."
Di Maio also testified that Martin likely remained conscious for 10-15 seconds after the shot, and might have been alive for as long as three minutes, based on forensic evidence.