In addition to revealing whom the high-school junior talked with and when and what text messages he sent and received, it could be an electronic record of what he thought — captured in email, videos and photos — and the websites he visited.
Dave Kleiman, a computer forensic technician and expert witness with Computer Forensics LLC in West Palm Beach, has no connection to the case and has not analyzed the phone, but he said there may be ways to get to the information from the built-in memory chip.
The phone uses an Android operating system, owned by Google, and Google may be able to bypass the security system and retrieve it, Kleiman said. A technician also could pull the chip out of the phone and analyze it, considered by some to be an extreme step because it would destroy the phone.
It's not clear why Brenton at FDLE went no further than he did. FDLE did not respond to an email asking about the process, and neither did the office of Special Prosecutor Angela Corey, which is handling the case against Zimmerman.
Brenton analyzed the phone March 26. It appears that no one has tried since then to pull more information from it, O'Mara said. He said he would press Circuit Judge Debra S. Nelson at a Dec. 11 hearing to order the state to provide more information about what's on the phone.
The phone provides a link to one of the prosecution's most important witnesses, a 16-year-old Miami girl who told investigators that she was on the phone with Trayvon in the minutes leading up to the shooting.
In an interview recorded by an attorney for Trayvon's family and ABC News, she said a man was following Trayvon, that he was scared, that Trayvon asked, " 'What are you following me for?' " and she heard the man say, " 'What are you doing around here?' "
The phone then went dead, she said.
Trayvon's father provided ABC with a call log that showed several calls to Trayvon's phone in the minutes leading up to the shooting, something consistent with the girl's account to prosecutors. The last was at 7:12 p.m. Trayvon was shot at 7:16 p.m., according to Seminole County Sheriff's Office records.