Neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman has made his first court appearance on a second-degree murder charge in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.
During the brief appearance Thursday, Zimmerman stood up straight and wore a gray prison jumpsuit. He spoke only to answer "Yes, sir," after he was asked basic questions about the charge against him and his attorney.
The judge said an arraignment would be held on May 29 before another judge.
The judge also agreed to seal records already gathered in the case.
Experts said Zimmeman's attorney could ask for a bond hearing sooner, which would determine whether he is released on bail.
But his lawyer Mark O'Mara said after the hearing he chose not to ask for bail at this time because "it might only arouse the fervor" around the case, Reuters reported.
Zimmerman was charged after a public campaign to make an arrest in the Feb. 26 shooting, which has galvanized the nation for weeks. Some legal experts had expected Zimmerman to face a lesser count of manslaughter and say a prosecutor will face steep hurdles to win a murder conviction. Zimmerman has claimed that he fired in self-defense.
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