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WESH-TV reports that Judge Debra Nelson threw out an allegation pertaining to one of five NBC broadcasts about Zimmerman. In tossing one allegation, the judge pointed to a technicality.
The Orlando Sentinel reports:
The judge this morning threw out the claim that NBC and employee Jeff Burnside defamed Zimmerman in a March 19, 2012, broadcast. Zimmerman can’t claim he was wronged by that report, the judge said, because his letter to the network never identified that specific broadcast and he never gave notice to Burnside.
Zimmerman is suing the network for falsely presenting him as a racist. At issue is an edited 911 call that made it appear as if Zimmerman had followed Trayvon Martin because he was black. Audio that was played several times on NBC was edited to make it seem as if Zimmerman volunteered to tell dispatchers that Trayvon Martin was black. NBC is also accused of falsely claiming that Zimmerman used a racial epithet during the call.
Lawyers for NBC contend that Zimmerman cannot prove that its employees acted with “malice” and that Zimmerman became a public figure on the night he gunned down Trayvon Martin. They also claim that any harm Zimmerman suffered was not caused by NBC.
Zimmerman’s attorney, however, notes that NBC fired several employees after the incident and even apologized.
Judge Nelson said she will rule on the other broadcasts once she has done more homework. She will be on vacation two weeks before she decides on the next motions.