Judge Kenneth R. Lester, Jr. (pictured), the judge handling the Trayvon Martin case, is refusing to step down after lawyers representing George Zimmerman asked him to recuse himself several weeks ago, the Orlando Sentinel reports.
As NewsOne previously reported, Zimmerman’s defense team filed a motion requesting that Judge Lester step aside because they believed he is ‘biased’ against their client. In his defense order, Mark O’Mara argued that Judge Lester made “gratuitous, disparaging remarks about Zimmerman’s character.”
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The order also states that the judge is holding the potential of future contempt charges over their client’s head. “In doing so, the Court created a reasonable fear in Mr. Zimmerman that this Court is biased against him and because of this prejudice he cannot receive a fair and impartial trial or hearing by this Court,” O’Mara claims in the order.
Judge Lester did not comment on the charges of unfairness. He simply wrote that the motion was insufficient, according to The Sentinel.
Here is how several attorneys interviewed by The Sentinel broke down Judge Lester’s refusal to step aside:
“I’m surprised he didn’t excuse himself,” said Orlando defense lawyer Richard Hornsby after Lester’s ruling. He said O’Mara should absolutely challenge the ruling.
“My opinion is that he has no choice,” Hornsby said. “His motion [to recuse Lester] was so extensive. I think they are all in.”