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TV on Trial

George Zimmerman’s trial seemed to raise as many questions as it answered, but one thing was proved convincingly: television in courtrooms can have damaging effects.
The jury had barely been seated when observers wondered why defense attorney Don West opened with a tasteless knock-knock joke. Would he have tried such a ploy if he weren’t playing to a national television audience?
Florida was among the first states to permit televised trials, beginning in 1979. Notably, there had been a four-year delay because it proved impossible to get participants in trials to grant permission for the presence of cameras ...

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