George Zimmerman trial: Skype disruption prompts confusion during witness testimony Wednesday

George Zimmerman, left, arrives in Seminole circuit court, with his wife Shellie, on the 11th day of his trial, in Sanford, Fla., Monday, June 24, 2013. Zimmerman is accused in the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman has been charged with second-degree murder for the 2012 shooting death of Trayvon Martin. (AP Photo/Orlando Sentinel, Joe Burbank, Pool)
Joe Burbank

(CBS) -- Proceedings in the George Zimmerman murder trial were interrupted Wednesday morning when a witness testifying over Skype began receiving repeated incoming calls, forcing attorneys to switch from the video conferencing system to speaker phone.

PICTURES: George Zimmerman on trial in death of Fla. teen

PICTURES: George Zimmerman crime scene photos

READ: Trayvon Martin Shooting: A timeline of events

The Skype snafu came during the testimony of Gordon Scott Pleasants, a professor at Seminole State College, where Zimmerman took classes. As Pleasants appeared on the video screen, a steady string of incoming calls prompted numerous windows to pop-up, blocking his face. The calls also prompted noises that partially drowned out his voice.

VIDEO: Zimmerman trial: Prosecutor opens with profanity

"Is that his phone?" Circuit Judge Debra Nelson asked.

"There's now a really good chance we're being toyed with," said defense attorney Mark O'Mara as the court attempted to switch to the speaker phone.

It wasn't clear whether the calls were intended for Pleasants or whether the calls were the product of pranksters. 

Pleasants began laughing as he was forced to repeatedly decline the calls.

  • Erin Donaghue

    Erin Donaghue covers crime for's Crimesider.