State attorney employee fired after testifying in Zimmerman case

By Kyle Hightower

Associated Press

Published: Saturday, July 13 2013 2:30 p.m. MDT

George Zimmerman stands next to his attorneys Mark O' Mara, left, and Don West during his trial in Seminole Circuit Court in Sanford, Fla. Friday, July 12, 2013.

Gary W. Green, AP

Enlarge photo»

A state attorney's office employee has been fired after testifying about concerns that prosecutors didn't turn over photos and text messages from Trayvon Martin's cellphone to the defense in George Zimmerman's murder case.

Ben Kruidbos received a termination letter Thursday accusing him of misconduct and "violating numerous state attorney's office policies and procedures."

It accused him of disclosure of confidential information, sabotage of property or equipment, and misuse of state attorney equipment.

Attorney Wesley White says Kruidbos wasn't surprised by the firing.

Kruidbos retrieved photos and deleted text messages from Martin's cellphone and testified during a hearing June 6. Zimmerman's attorneys were seeking sanctions against the state for not properly turning over the evidence from Martin's phone.

Judge Debra Nelson said she would revisit the matter at the trial's end.

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