It has been explained many times
why the forcible felony provision is not applicable in this case.
There are two sections of the aggressor statute. The first one, concerning forcible felonies, does not apply to this case because George Zimmerman is not charged with
an independent forcible felony. A multiple of Florida cases and the state’s jury instructions state this. I've provided links to the opinions many times. See, Dennis v. State, Martinez v. State, Giles v. State, and Smith v. State.
The aggressor statute in Florida, § 776.041, allows the aggressor
to respond with deadly force to the victim's use of force against him, if:
Such force is so great that the person reasonably believes that he or she is in imminent danger of death or great bodily harm and that he or she has exhausted every reasonable means to escape such danger other than the use of force which is likely to cause death or great bodily harm to the assailant;
An aggressor is someone who initially provokes the use of physical force. Provoking fear in another person is not the same thing and not enough -- or even the test. The statute explicitly refers to an aggressor as someone who “initially provokes the use of force against himself or herself.” Even in the unlikely event the jury believed GZ was the aggressor, they would still have to acquit him unless they believed the state proved, beyond a reasonable doubt, that George did not reasonably believe he was in imminent danger of great bodily harm and that there was another another reasonable means to escape the danger available to him at the time.
If Zimmerman was not the aggressor, and he reasonably feared serious bodily injury from Martin, he was justified in fatally in shooting Martin, regardless of whether lhe could extricate himself from the situation without using deadly force and regardless of whether lesser force than deadly force would have sufficed.
The state must disprove self-defense beyond a reasonable doubt. GZ has no burden of proof. All he has to do is raise self-defense by providing some evidence, no matter how weak, even if it is just his own statements, that he acted in self-defense. The burden of proof at trial never shifts.
My view: If GZ was being attacked by Martin as he claims, which is supported by the photos of his injuries, and Martin was on top, as Witness 6 observed, and GZ was unable to get out from under TM or extricate himself, then he had no other means of escape from the danger he believed himself to be in. In addition to the punch in the nose and slamming of his head against the concrete, there's also GZ's claim that TM was trying to suffocate him and he feared losing consciousness. Even a month later, W6 said it seemed like the guy on the bottom in the red was struggling to get up (See March 20 interview transcript