Trayvon Martin's family has "every confidence" George Zimmerman will be convicted, family attorney says

Sybrina Fulton, lower left and Tracy Martin, center, the parents of slain teen Trayvon Martin, arrive in court with their attorney, Benjamin Crump, standing right, for the first day of the trial of George Zimmerman, in Seminole circuit court in Sanford, Fla., Monday, June 10, 2013. Zimmerman is accused in the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin. (AP Photo/Orlando Sentinel, Joe Burbank/Pool)
Joe Burbank
Sybrina Fulton, lower left and Tracy Martin, center, the parents of slain teen Trayvon Martin, arrive in court with their attorney, Benjamin Crump for the first day of the trial of George Zimmerman, Monday, June 10, 2013.
AP Photo/Orlando Sentinel, Joe Burbank/Pool

(CBS) SANFORD, Fla. --The family of slain Florida teen Trayvon Martin has "every confidence" that a jury will convict George Zimmerman, the former neighborhood watch captain accused in his shooting death, a family attorney said.

PICTURES: George Zimmerman in court

READ: Trayvon Martin Shooting: A timeline of events

Martin's family, including his mother Sybrina Fulton and father Tracy Martin, have attended jury selection proceedings in the Seminole County criminal courthouse since they launched more than a week ago. Attorneys in the case have been whittling down a pool of potential jurors, questioning them on their exposure to news reports in the high-profile case.

Tuesday, prosecutors and defense attorneys reached an important milestone -- identifying 40 potential jurors eligible to move on to a second round of questioning. The attorneys will be able to ask the candidates more in-depth questions when court resumes at 9 a.m. Wednesday.

The family has been "encouraged" by the jury selection process, said Daryl Parks, a Martin family attorney, adding that they feel the panel of six jurors and four alternates ultimately seated will be able to be impartial.

"I think the family feels very optimistic they can still get full justice for Trayvon," Parks said. "...Probably the most importantly, they've been able to hear there are a great number of people who can be impartial and fair and deliver justice."

The family believes the "full body of evidence in this case should lead to a conviction of George Zimmerman," Parks said.

Prosecutors and the defense team are questioning potential jurors closely about their understanding of the events of Feb. 26, 2012, the night Zimmerman fatally shot Martin during an altercation in a Sanford, Fla. gated community. Zimmerman claims the teen attacked him and he acted in self-defense.

Answers from potential jurors have varied widely, from candidates who said they believe Zimmerman was following Martin that evening and confronted the teen to potential jurors who said they have no knowledge of what may have happened. 

One potential juror said Martin was "looking for a reason to fight" and "got aggressive."

"[Zimmerman] is just watching out for someone who looks suspicious and this boy is confronted, and he already has drugs in his system or could have been high even then, and he got aggressive," said the candidate, identified as E-81.

The juror said she came to her conclusions based on photos and text messages from Martin's phone, released publicly, that the defense hopes to introduce as evidence as trial.

The photos depict Martin blowing smoke and a hand holding a gun, and the text messages refer to Martin's alleged past fighting. A judge has ruled that while the potential evidence can't be referenced during opening statements, the defense may be able to introduce it at trial if they prove to her its relevance.

"I think it's been a tough week for them - you're hearing people totally mis-characterizing your son, and to sit there and not be able to speak for your child is tough," Parks told Crimesider. "There have been plenty of distortions of the truth in this case."

Another Martin family attorney, Benjamin Crump, said in a statement last month the photos and text messages are "irrelevant red herrings" and "a desperate and pathetic attempt by the defense to pollute and sway the jury pool," the Orlando Sentinel reported.

The Martin family will continue attending proceedings at the courthouse as attorneys inch closer to seating a jury, Parks said.

"They plan to be there every day," Parks said.

Complete coverage of the George Zimmerman-Trayvon Martin case on Crimesider

  • Erin Donaghue

    Erin Donaghue covers crime for's Crimesider.