Zimmerman: Rachel Jeantel Finishes Testimony, For Now

Rachel Jeantel was grilled again today on the witness stand by George Zimmerman attorney Don West. The above is a five minute clip about her reference yesterday to Trayvon Martin calling Zimmerman a creepy as* cracker. West asked her whether she thought that was a racial comment and whether it wasn't really Trayvon Martin who profiled George Zimmerman rather than the other way around. (she answered no.)

There was some disagreement between lawyers at the end of her testimony, the judge sent out the jury and the judge dismissed her, telling her she could be recalled and was still under subpoena.

I will watch her entire testimony before posting an update and analysis. You can also read the comments on her testimony today on our forums. They begin here.

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    Quick question (5.00 / 1) (#1)
    by rjarnold on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:09:19 PM EST
    RJ claims that after she talked with him that she tried to call back a couple of times and then sent texts. Do the records actually indicate that she did try to call back or send texts? I don't remember any calls after 7:15 on the records.

    Anyone?? (5.00 / 2) (#27)
    by rjarnold on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 04:11:41 PM EST
    I ask because her story does not make that much sense at all. According to her she heard that some guy was following Trayvon, then he ran away, then she heard the beginning of the confrontation, then the phone is disconnected.

    Then she calls him back a couple of times and texts him and he doesn't respond and she wasn't worried at all. Then she presumably doesn't try to contact him at all the next couple of days, and eventually hears rumors that he is dead. Why doesn't she try to call him to see if he is alright? Why doesn't she connect his possible death to the man who was following him? She then doesn't tell anyone what she heard for 3 weeks.

    I think her phone records would clear some of this up. Is it possible she could have been having multiple phone conversations at the same time and not been talking to Trayvon the whole time? Did she really try to call back? This is a big part of the story that can either be confirmed or contradicted.


    I think she did. (none / 0) (#93)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:51:52 PM EST
    The T-Mobile guy testified about two (I think two) calls that went to voicemail after the last call we know got connected.

    If GZ was the screamer, (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by magster on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:35:36 PM EST
    why would he stop screaming after shooting TM? Why wouldn't he keep yelling for someone to call 911 if he felt compelled to shoot someone in self-defense?

    Seems like the prosecutor asking and ending on whether the yelling stopped right after the screaming is intended to make that point.

    Personally, I would expect GZ (or anyone) (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:39:57 PM EST
    to be screaming during the time they felt they had no control over the situation, like when he was getting his a$$ kicked, and then stop screaming once started gaining some control, like when he had the gun in his hand.

    The screaming stopped abruptly .... (none / 0) (#6)
    by magster on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:44:27 PM EST
    ... upon the gunshot.

    details as others are. I don't think being scared and screaming due to a threat, and then stopping being scared and stopping screaming when the threat stops, is particularly unusual. The reality of shooting and likely killing someone would certainly give me some pause in the immediate aftermath of shooting someone.

    Exactly. (5.00 / 4) (#81)
    by Jack203 on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:14:13 PM EST
    "I don't think being scared and screaming due to a threat, and then stopping being scared and stopping screaming when the threat stops is particularly"

    As with 95% of the points the scheme team try to propagate....it makes no sense whatsoever.  It's just pure and utter nonsense.

    A gunshot is a game changer.  Whatever was happening (Trayvon on top of GZ assaulting him), stopped happening.  To somehow think that the screaming stopped exclude GZ from being the screamer is ridiculous.  I question either the integrity or intelligence of the person making such a ridiculous claim.


    game changer (none / 0) (#101)
    by Char Char Binks on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 08:21:58 PM EST
    I stole your line, sorry!  I thought I made it up, but then I saw that you said it first.

    yes we know this and (none / 0) (#9)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:46:58 PM EST
    the prosecution argues it to support its allegation that TM was screaming and the defense argues it means the opposite. The jury will decide. It can be taken either way.

    This also doesn't pertain to Rachel's testimony, so please let it go. We've gotten your opinion.


    why would he keep yelling (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:45:12 PM EST
    once the beating stopped? He was crying out for someone to help stop the beating. The gunshot ended the beating. He was no longer a threat.

    According to Cutcher and Mora, who came out after the shot, he told them to call the police.


    I get what you're saying.... (none / 0) (#12)
    by magster on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:49:28 PM EST
    But I think that's where the prosecution is going...If GZ was so concerned about getting help, why wouldn't he keep yelling for someone to call 911. Did GZ call 911 after shooting TM?

    The prosecution, with their seeming last question lasting impression made the point that the screaming stopped abruply after the gunshot.

    Without the voice experts, who has the better argument on why the screaming stopped abruptly upon the gunshot?


    Sorry, I was typing #12 when you posted #11. (none / 0) (#13)
    by magster on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:50:30 PM EST
    I thought this was a live blogging thing.

    he already knew the cops (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by TeresaInPa on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:55:21 PM EST
    were coming. He stopped screaming because he no longer needed help is my guess.  

    This is what I think of about that time: Before Zimmerman knew anyone had recorded the screaming or seen the two of them on the ground or could either contradict or back him up, he described the scene as the witnesses did.  The only point in question is who was on top and who was calling for help.  


    zimmerman (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by morphic on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 03:09:16 PM EST
      The police went to the south gate instead of the north gate, and had to circle around. If they had called Zimmerman, as he requested, when they got there, that likely wouldn't have happened and they might have gotten there before the gunshot. If they had lost a couple of minutes, they may even have gotten there before the incident started.

    so sad (none / 0) (#19)
    by TeresaInPa on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 03:20:57 PM EST
    some one was calling for help and no one came.  I believe it was GZ.  Could no one leave their house and pull the kid off him?
    So sad the cops didn't get there on time.

    It didn't (none / 0) (#20)
    by John Shaft on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 03:29:14 PM EST
    take G.Zimmerman very long to take out his gun & shoot T.Martin. Because he was afraid T.Martin was armed - he said so when he apologized to the Martins. So, it wasn't his fear of being beaten to death it was his fear of being shot by Trayvon Martin that made him shot first.

    or at the very least, seen what happened. (none / 0) (#21)
    by magster on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 03:30:25 PM EST
    So sad (none / 0) (#76)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:54:38 PM EST

    I agree.  T. Martin and Lee Rigby may well both be alive if the onlookers did something other than link.



    So sad (none / 0) (#77)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:54:56 PM EST

    I agree.  T. Martin and Lee Rigby may well both be alive if the onlookers did something other than link.



    Dispersion (none / 0) (#131)
    by BackFromOhio on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 09:13:29 AM EST
    of responsibility - so no one acts.  'Member Genovese?

    The blast (5.00 / 2) (#22)
    by rickroberts on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 03:35:01 PM EST
    Hearing a gun blast at the close proximity, whether you are the shooter or not, will shock and silence you.

    I noticed that also ... (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by melamineinNY on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:14:41 PM EST
    that when Zimmerman did the walk-through on site a day or so later, his account lined up with witnesses he didn't know about. It would be strange too for him to think he could pass someone else's screams for help off as his own even if we've learned since then how believable some people find it.

    on what points? (none / 0) (#67)
    by zaitztheunconvicted on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:24:20 PM EST
    in what points does the zimmerman account agree with witnesses he did not know would give statements or testify?  That he got on top of Tm, then, or other things?

    on the screaming for help. (none / 0) (#75)
    by melamineinNY on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:54:12 PM EST
    While watching his walk-through again after listening to testimony of ear witnesses yesterday, there seemed to be a lack of inconsistency on that particular aspect.

    screams while being beaten (none / 0) (#28)
    by zaitztheunconvicted on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 04:13:30 PM EST
    If you are being caned or hit, and are screaming while being caned or hit, you would now that when the caning or hitting stops, the screams generally also stop.

    Screamer (none / 0) (#98)
    by Char Char Binks on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 08:18:21 PM EST
    A gunshot is a game-changer.

    I don't think that's a bad point... (none / 0) (#109)
    by MikeB on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 10:34:06 PM EST
    ....and does raise a question. However, there is no possible way in the world to know what someone was thinking or what they would do from the sidelines in that situation. I believe a situation like this would be highly unpredictable. We have the benefit of 20/20 hindsight and I don't believe anyone (prosecution or defense) should be judged given that.

    There is no way to know, but if I were in Zimmerman's shoes as I understand the facts of the case, I would have stopped screaming. As soon as you pull the trigger, you would have to think help was not coming and no longer needed.


    Is there a thread where we can discuss.... (5.00 / 2) (#24)
    by magster on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 03:57:19 PM EST
    that a witness just place GZ on top of TM.

    no because it's old news (5.00 / 1) (#83)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:17:44 PM EST
    and it was after the shot, and GZ has acknowledged that he got on top of Martin after the shot. And that witness and her roommate joined Team Crump before the arrest over a year ago at press conferences and rallies to show their support for the Martins. They have gone on TV to promote their view that this was not self-defense. They have changed their stories. She's being discussed on the forums.

    I wonder why O'Mara didn't bring (none / 0) (#99)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 08:20:25 PM EST
    that up like he did with the medical IT girl that I can't remember her name. Maybe because what she said happened after the shot, that she thought was a skateboard sound, matches what GZ said?

    All witness testimony (none / 0) (#71)
    by ding7777 on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:38:55 PM EST
    can be discussed on the forum..here

    More: (5.00 / 1) (#68)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:31:52 PM EST
    5:06 p.m. ET: Once the person on top had gotten up, see could see the person on the bottom, who was face-down, according to Mora.
    As Mora stated earlier in her testimony that she went out to see what was going on after the gunshot (though she did not realize it was a gunshot at the time), it is clear that she saw the aftermath of the incident.

    This would seem to benefit the defense, imo.

    Forensics will matter more (5.00 / 1) (#72)
    by ding7777 on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:42:36 PM EST
    GZ's jacket had wet grass on the back.  TM's pants had grass stains on the knees

    I'm Surprised Nobody Brings Up (5.00 / 2) (#79)
    by RickyJim on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:11:53 PM EST
    The big issue with the Jeantel testimony is that she is trying to relate what happened during a cellphone conversation which she neither discussed with anybody nor took any notes or mentioned in social networking until over three weeks after it occurred.  She says that she didn't contact anybody to tell what she knew because she didn't think it was important.  Is there any good reason, then, to believe she has an accurate memory of its contents?

    her memory was first aided (5.00 / 1) (#89)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:36:10 PM EST
    by Crump over a year ago in the March 19 interview where he fed her line after after line.

    Were you aware your call around 7:12 and the police arrived at 7:17 and when they arrived he was already shot?

    When he was following him the car, apparently, the Zimmerman man was on the phone with the police and so between the police call and your call we pretty much have a lot of audio of what took place

    The records confirm you were the last person to talk to him alive  and you heard part of the altercation just minutes before he was killed

    You told that story just like you told us earlier today and put it in perspective for us, he was just trying to get home and it started raining. That's pretty accurate?

    He asks why she didn't go to the wake. She says she in shock, she was sick, she didn't go to school that day. I stayed home and then my momma came around 2 and took her to the hospital (the next day.)

    And that's when you realized the day of his wake you were the last person to talk to him and it made you physically sick?  

    Now that she's testified, I think this Crump interview deserves another post of its own.


    But Did West Make This Clear? (5.00 / 3) (#100)
    by RickyJim on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 08:20:35 PM EST
    Both of us know this Jeralyn, but do you think West conveyed such things to the jury?  I found his cross of Rachel just as confusing, boring and disorganized as his opening statement.  He could have given some organization by going chronologically from the time Trayvon left the 711 to the final call to the Crump interview, etc and pointed out the differences between her various accounts.  During the day, I posted on the forum some questions I think he would have asked if he was better prepared or could think better on his feet:

    1. During Feb. 26 and April 2 of 2012, did you commit any of your recollections of Trayvon's last minutes to writing, for example, texts or tweets?  In that time period, whom have you orally discussed your recollections of Feb 26 with?  Have any asked you to say you remember certain things happening?
    2.  At the beginning of the final call with Trayvon, he was at his father's house and he kept moving.  Why didn't he go right in?
    3.  How do you know George Zimmerman moved towards Trayvon rather than Trayvon going towards GZ?
    4.  How do you know Trayvon, just as Zimmerman caught up to him, turned around to ask Zimmerman why he was following him?
    5.  Since you think the headset with microphone was out of place when you think you heard faintly, "Get off, get off", how can you be sure it was TM rather than GZ speaking?  How well do you know Mr. Zimmerman's voice?

    Ugh (5.00 / 1) (#102)
    by Jack203 on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 08:34:11 PM EST
    Yes, those are all fantastic questions RickyJim.

    I am getting the impression West really screwed this up. He crossed examined her for what...8 hours?  Did he bore the jury to the point of disliking him?

    Hopefully Jeralyn has a better take on West.


    Not according to reporters in the court room (none / 0) (#169)
    by lily on Sun Jun 30, 2013 at 12:52:54 AM EST
    3 of the jurors fixed their eyes on West and ignored RJ, the other 3 turned their heads back and forth tracking the conversation intensely and taking notes continuously.

    Don West (none / 0) (#122)
    by rickroberts on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 06:19:57 AM EST
    Every time he stands up to do the cross examination, I sigh.

    Well, maybe because West (5.00 / 1) (#115)
    by Tamta on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 11:45:16 PM EST
    was too busy extracting  and underscoring every.single.lie she has told in this case, bringing to light circumstances of coaching or intimidation, while successfully avoiding alienating the jury and making them feel bad for her as he ripped her credibility to shreds?

    I 100% agree with you.... I am just trying to... (none / 0) (#90)
    by Cashmere on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:37:14 PM EST
    look at things the way a jury, that may truly have not paid attention to anything pertaining to this case, or be completely impartial,and how the evidence has been presented thus far.

    It also seems like it is hard to bring into evidence what you are referencing, with this judge.  


    Child falling (5.00 / 2) (#103)
    by Char Char Binks on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 08:42:28 PM EST
    Mora heard the "thump of a child falling"!  With the amazing ears these witnesses have, who need eyes?

    Important question for Rachel (5.00 / 2) (#124)
    by rickroberts on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 06:33:57 AM EST
    Given her comments online about drugs and alcohol, she should be asked if she was under the influence at any time during the day or evening of Sunday, February 26, 2012. It was the weekend, after all. Many of us, um, partake on the weekends.

    Someone tell me why that is not a relevant, fair question.

    West (5.00 / 1) (#133)
    by Jack203 on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 09:53:31 AM EST
    West was too busy being super duper nice, and leading Rachel into making rather moderate statements and positions.

    From the parts I have scene, I just don't get it.

    I do know the judge kept sustaining West, so he almost had to really watch his line of questioning, but most of the time I couldn't tell whether he was the prosecution or defense lawyer.


    she was home (none / 0) (#166)
    by Jeralyn on Sat Jun 29, 2013 at 07:55:45 PM EST
    and at one point in the bathroom doing her hair for school the next day.

    Sunday night is not still part of the weekend partying time. There is no reason to suggest she was using alcohol or drugs that night.

    The defense deposed her and would have asked her then. The fact they didn't bring it up suggests there is no evidence to support that.


    Because it is. (5.00 / 1) (#145)
    by Angel on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 12:43:34 PM EST
    Definition of SLUR. 1. a: an insulting or disparaging remark or innuendo : aspersion. b: a shaming or degrading effect : stain, stigma.

    How can we take Jeantel's testimony (3.67 / 3) (#39)
    by gadfly on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:26:46 PM EST
    seriously when she is obviously mentally handicapped? Her Twitter posts, her short answers, her inability to read, write or speak in complex sentences are telltale signs.  She obviously cannot interact with other people socially and she likely cannot discern right from wrong in a legal sense. The easy manipulation of her testimony by the folks in the racism business makes that point.


    I wouldn't go that far (5.00 / 1) (#42)
    by ExcitableBoy on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:34:21 PM EST
    There's a big difference between some of the things you mention, and the inability to know right from wrong.

    Well it's clear that she doesn't view lying under (5.00 / 2) (#51)
    by redwolf on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:48:29 PM EST
    oath as being wrong.  That says a something about her moral sense.

    Well... (none / 0) (#46)
    by ackbarsays on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:42:22 PM EST
    I questioned her judgment about right and wrong when she told Don West repeatedly that the words "creepy ass cracker" have no racial connotation.

    I'm not sure I'd go that far... (none / 0) (#54)
    by melamineinNY on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:55:01 PM EST
    but I might. I've certainly wondered.

    Obviously? You are a doctor? (5.00 / 1) (#116)
    by Palli on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 11:50:22 PM EST
    You are asked to answer succintly at a trial, answer in complex sentences.

    Your comments may also be prejudiced, certainly insensitive. Rachel's use of the term "retarded" is colloquial for inane among many people, even the rich and/or well-educated. Her answer was blunt and immediate. Of course, as a caring adult, I would caution her and discuss the inappropriateness of the term. Actually, I could use the example of your own comment above-your offhand medical diagnosis derived from "telltale signs"- would make a perfect teaching moment.

    I didn't find her style or social interaction any more tedious or inept than some public figures I could name.

    The question of the "legal" sense of right and wrong is hard to grapple with for most people. In fact, if this case is easy, you have no empathy for anyone involved.


    edit correction for above (none / 0) (#118)
    by Palli on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 11:56:00 PM EST
    Sorry-the first sentence above lost the "not in complex sentences".

    Jeantel (3.00 / 2) (#23)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 03:55:32 PM EST
    Maybe not related to the legalities of her testimony but still related to her testimony.  As an african american, I have seen my facebook account and email account explode over the past 24 hours: not about the facts of the case but about Jeantel and her performance generally.

    On one hand (admittedly this is my team) you have black people who were appalled and embarrassed by her attitude and furious that her demeanor and lack of seriousness were destroying and otherwise strong case.

    But there was a massive and surprising push back against that by those who believed that this is a massive spectacle and that not everyone is prepared to handle such a thing, particularly at 19.  And that her responses and demeanor are understandable given the fact that she is genuinely frustrated with the entire process and the fact that her name is being dragged through the mud and the fact that not everyone is has NASA scientist levels of intelligence or Martha Stewart's social graces.  And that some of the commentary and gloating and memefication of her was insulting and possibly racist.   Interestingly, regardless of what side of the debate you are on, as a black person, everyone could really understand the other side.

    But what it highlights in jury trials is why the jury selection matters so much.  I am putting myself on an all white female jury and wondering whether there is anyone there that can truly provide perspective that would clear the communication barriers of her testimony?  Are 6 white women really going to understand that blacks at that age often use the N word the same way others use "dude"?  Would they get the fact that the word "Cracker" is often used when dealing with a white person doing the exact type of stereotyping and profiling the state is asserting?

    I am thinking not.

    I think the trial was just won or lost in the last 24 hours.  And it will all depend on whether they can see through cultural differences to what the core of the testimony was about.

    I have doubts.

    Not only this (5.00 / 1) (#26)
    by vicndabx on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 04:10:52 PM EST
    you have black people who were appalled and embarrassed by her attitude and furious that her demeanor and lack of seriousness were destroying and otherwise strong case

    I felt the same way initially also.  Then I realized, my own prejudices about how she presented herself ultimately didn't matter.  There but for the grace of God go I, I thought.  What is normal for her culturally is not the same for me, but doesn't make what's normal for her culturally wrong merely because I cannot connect to it as strongly as she can.  Indeed, we are all not alike.  

    It really is about seeing past the book cover and getting to the core - how much weight to lend her testimony and why/why not.


    Except (5.00 / 4) (#29)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 04:21:13 PM EST
    you have black people who were appalled and embarrassed by her attitude and furious that her demeanor and lack of seriousness were destroying and otherwise strong case

    That CAN go to how much weight to give her testimony, without it being a race thing.  Witnesses who are not forthcoming, have attitudes, may be lying, snarky, sarcastic, etc.  may be doing so because they don't like the questions being asked, and may be trying to spin a story. her demeaor and lack of seriousness would have nothing to do with whether she is black, white, or green with yellow polka dots.


    jbindc (none / 0) (#31)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 04:29:18 PM EST
    I guess the point though is that you are more likely to be able to differentiate demeanor and seriousness from deceptiveness and other bad witness traits if you understand the culture that the witness comes from.  I just that is natural and happens all of the time.

    You can better evaluate someone who has a similar background.

    If you dropped me in an largely asian county somewhere in the US and sat me on a trial and asked me to determine the credibility of a set of witnesses who speak english as a second language, I am just not going to do as good a job as I would if I was a juror on a case here in Fulton County, GA with witnesses from Southwest Atlanta.

    It matters.


    I understand your concern... (5.00 / 2) (#45)
    by melamineinNY on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:42:19 PM EST
    and for me it wasn't the language she used, but  her demeaner and attitude, not just in court but with regard to the truth of what she witnessed, and the seriousness of the trial. We know she can speak her mind about bald heads and her drunk driving and such. The first at least would be more entertaining if she also spoke the truth to Trayvon's family and investigators. I don't find her credible for those reasons. That doesn't mean I don't mind the double standard when it comes to judging her language and that of her peers, but it wasn't an issue for me as far as her credibility

    Careful (5.00 / 1) (#97)
    by chaking on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 08:18:09 PM EST
    I guess the point though is that you are more likely to be able to differentiate demeanor and seriousness from deceptiveness and other bad witness traits if you understand the culture that the witness comes from.  I just that is natural and happens all of the time.

    You can better evaluate someone who has a similar background.

    I think it's pretty dangerous when we think we can tell what someone else thinks or what the truth is based on "demeanor" and the like.  Especially when it comes to holding someone's life in the balance.

    There has to be a separation of, "that feels true" and "does that actually line up with everything else we know?"  Probably, at this time in history, it's fairly impossible to be 100% sure if someone is telling the truth - or as Jeralyn pointed out yesterday, if they're telling the truth but the truth has been distorted intentionally or unintentionally by a number of other factors.  RJ has no doubt had a ton of outside influence from the time the event occurred and the trial.  So much can happen, change, morph or whatever you want to call it in that period.

    The fact of the matter is that she was talking to Trayvon, he commented to her about being followed and said something to that person, something was said back and then a scuffle ensued.  In my opinion, that's about all you can be fairly sure about.


    the jury will be instructed to consider (none / 0) (#168)
    by Jeralyn on Sat Jun 29, 2013 at 08:28:16 PM EST
    both how she acted and what she said. It's in the jury instructions, see the end of this comment thread.

    Maybe, but (none / 0) (#34)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 04:44:18 PM EST
    It's pretty offensive that you ASSUME that an all white female jury can't evaluate her testimony for what it is.  Some of that, yes, will include any prejudices they may have, but then again - what are their ages?  Maybe it's an age thing and nothing to do with race?  Why do you automatically go there?

    I don't assume anything really (none / 0) (#44)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:41:57 PM EST
    But let's keep it real: the jury selection process matters.

    In this case more than others (none / 0) (#108)
    by Jack203 on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 09:59:56 PM EST
    "but let's keep it real: the jury selection process matters. "

    From what I can tell the black community is nothing short of obsessed over this case.

    It reached a tipping point when the black celebrities starting coming on board.  It's now at the dissenters are compared to Uncle Tom stage.  If I was black, I wouldn't dare voice any doubt and ostracize myself in my own community.

    The truth can go to hell.

    99% of cases, I wouldnt care about the race of the juror.  But this one, a black jury would be an almost certain conviction.  And I don't even think OJ was acquitted because of the number of blacks on the juror. OJ was acquitted because the prosecution got their asses handed to them, and the prosecution were the ones that had to prove beyond a reasonable doubt >95%.



    Jack203 (none / 0) (#134)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 10:06:42 AM EST
    If you don't understand why this case is a big deal in the black community, you just don't understand the black experience in America today.

    Hell yes we are obsessed with this case.

    And why on earth do you think that the only bias occurs when you have black juries.  Maybe black juries are less biased, but it seems like they are the biased ones because for so long white juries were the standard.

    There are plenty of people in the black community who believe that Zimmerman should get off legally, but that from a moral/ethical point of view, he is responsible for the boy's death.  

    We are a little more nuanced than you think.


    Says the guy from Santa Monica (5.00 / 1) (#136)
    by Payaso on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 10:55:05 AM EST
    How the black community feels about this case is irrelevant.

    The only thing that matters is how the jury feels about the evidence.


    Exactly (5.00 / 1) (#141)
    by rickroberts on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 11:55:02 AM EST
    And it is not the defense's job to worry about community reaction to how the trial is conducted or its outcome. Their job is to defend their client. Period. Ruthlessly even.

    ABG (5.00 / 1) (#138)
    by Jack203 on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 10:58:34 AM EST
    "If you don't understand why this case is a big deal in the black community, you just don't understand the black experience in America today.

    Hell yes we are obsessed with this case."

    I understand why this is important in the black community.  

    It's about power. It's about winning.  It's about proving a young black boy's life is just as important as any other boy's life. And it's about making sure the police, the prosecutors, and American public never forget that.

    But what it's not about is the truth.

    "And why on earth do you think that the only bias occurs when you have black juries.  Maybe black juries are less biased"

    Any other case it wouldn't matter, but this one it does.

    "but it seems like they are the biased ones because for so long white juries were the standard."

    Thanks for proving my point.  So you're allowed to be biased because in the past others were biased against you?

    "There are plenty of people in the black community who believe that Zimmerman should get off legally, but that from a moral/ethical point of view, he is responsible for the boy's death.  "

    Well I would partly agree with them.  I do think if GZ didn't have a gun that day, they'd both be alive, and if GZ didn't panic even with his gun, they'd both be alive.

    Any famous one you could think of offhand that has said this opinion publicly.  Please don't say some Black Republican talking head getting paid to spout out bs.  


    oh come on (none / 0) (#148)
    by TeresaInPa on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 01:22:40 PM EST
    the black experience today?  What is this 1962?

    If TM was an Irish American the minority community in Sanford would have considered Zimmerman the person of color and no one would have been up in arms that he was not arrested.  In fact they might have congratulated the police in recognizing a case of self defense even in a case where a brown person shot a white boy.
    I am glad to hear that there are people in the AA community that think this was a matter of self defense. I am sorry they feel it is Zimmerman's fault because they do not like his character.  Our justice system doesn't allow for beating up people we don't like or whom we consider creepy a**ed crackers. If our justice system worked that way then there would be no protection for anybody else either.


    That is a fair point (none / 0) (#50)
    by vicndabx on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:46:36 PM EST
    you ASSUME that an all white female jury can't evaluate her testimony for what it is

    However, I would submit that if the jury is anything like the commentators on the news the last few days, who had difficulty understanding her, whereas I, as a black man (or my wife who is Mexican & Dominican) did not, the point ABG makes is equally valid, and should not be considered offensive.  We have evidence, in other words.  

    Of course, none of these commentators are on the jury, thus this is all speculation.


    I would submit (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:04:56 PM EST
    That jurors, in general, take their oaths to be fair, very seriously, and to assign motives for them, especially as we are early in the trial, is unfair.

    Not trying to disparage the generic juror (none / 0) (#86)
    by vicndabx on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:22:32 PM EST
    however, jurors are people too.  What makes you believe they can't also be

    not forthcoming, have attitudes, may be lying, snarky, sarcastic, etc.  may be doing so because they don't like....

    you seriously can't believe jurors are any different from witnesses, defendants or anyone else in the courtroom, but for their title?  

    Aren't they people just like you and I?


    Didn't these jurors go through (none / 0) (#121)
    by TeresaInPa on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 06:16:57 AM EST
    the jury selection process?  Didn't the Prosecution take part in that and ask the important question?  Isn't the prosecution serious about convicting Zimmerman?
    Maybe you lucked out and the prosecution cleverly profiled them and found six white women drowning in white guilt. They'll bend over backwards to convict GZ no matter what the evidence says.

    I think there is (none / 0) (#153)
    by BackFromOhio on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 02:40:54 PM EST
    research on juries that backs up what Angry Black Guy is saying and issues with the jury's evaluation of the witness.  I am white, studying psych, and we are being trained daily to understand cultural differences in language, body language and other matters.  That said, aside from sizing up the witness's demeanor, choice of language, etc., I think what's important for the trial process is looking at her testimony, the facts, etc.  
    That said, I think there are problems with the testimony, that are entirely unrelated. I have been reading the posts and comments about factual matters to sift out what this witness knows and where there might be holes or serious inconsistencies in her testimony, unrelated to her demeanor and language.  

    Couldn't you also say (none / 0) (#154)
    by jbindc on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 03:29:41 PM EST
    That because the jury is made up of all women, that they may feel protective of her, because an older man "went after her"?  How about if the jury members are all significantly older than her that a) they feel protective of her because "she's just a child" (she's not, but that's how some may feel), or b) they feel contempt for her because she is a "typical, slacker teenager, who will say anything to avoid responsibility and will never take the blame for doing something, so she can't be believed"?  Before the jury even decides anything, why are some assuming it's going to come down to her race and cultural attributes?

    Yes, the substance of her testimony is what's relevant - can it be believed?  Can inconsistencies be easily explained away?


    I am not aware of (none / 0) (#170)
    by BackFromOhio on Tue Jul 02, 2013 at 11:13:09 AM EST
    any psych studies on M/F issues in the jury process except perhaps as apply to decisions in rape cases.  

    but this particular (none / 0) (#158)
    by TeresaInPa on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 05:30:20 PM EST
    jury was chosen from a very large pool by the prosecution as much as by the defense. I see no reason to worry about them.  I too am a middle aged white woman and I have no problem understanding RJ.    Her testimony, character and forthrightness held up better than several other witnesses. So it is not a race thing much as some people keep trying to make it so.

    It seems to me that (5.00 / 4) (#30)
    by rjarnold on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 04:27:24 PM EST
    you are presuming that the only reason one would have problems with her testimony is if they themselves are culturally prejudiced.

    I find that offensive.

    She admitted to lying on more  than one occasion, she didn't talk to anyone about what happened for three weeks, and she-contradicted herself multiple times.

    She lacks credibility and good judgment and her story does not strongly contradict any part of George Zimmerman's version of the events.


    rjarnold (2.00 / 3) (#32)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 04:31:54 PM EST
    I am not at all excusing her lies, but honestly, I think if you make that girl white, have her speak the queen's english, and have her explain that her deceptions were the result of concerns over the family and other things (basically make the exact same points Jeantel did), I think the jury would probably overlook much of it.  

    I think Jeantel will not get that benefit of the doubt because of the cultural barriers between her and the jurors.

    But don't get me wrong, she has absolutely sucked as a witness generally.  Which is why I was furious at her yesterday.


    On one hand, (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by rjarnold on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:22:58 PM EST
    you're right, the people probably would be more sympathetic had she been more articulate. However, with someone with all the inconsistencies, and the lies, and showing poor judgment, they still would have significant credibility issues with the jury regardless of how well they spoke.

    Even if she didn't have those issues she still did not witness something that definitively would contradict GZ's version of the events.

    The thing that bothers me personally about people's criticism of her is that many people (not on Talkleft but on other websites) are mocking her and assuming she is an idiot. You can't make assumptions on one's intelligence based on how they communicate. Many people have learning disabilities and other issues.


    I wouldn't. (5.00 / 3) (#53)
    by redwolf on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:53:56 PM EST
    If you'll lie about the small things to make things more convenient, you'll sure as hell lie about big things if you find it in your interests to do so.  It's clear she's not worried about perjury charges because she doesn't understand that she could go to jail for lying in a murder trial.

    Even more of a factor IMO (5.00 / 1) (#62)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:08:20 PM EST
    the white woman you describe would not have had to repeat her answers over and over, and would have been off the stand in 4 hours, before so much frustration took over.

    I disagree (5.00 / 2) (#123)
    by TeresaInPa on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 06:31:13 AM EST
    I think make her white with the queens english, she gets less sympathy.  She then gets called a spoiled rotten little white girl who with all her advantages should know better.  She gets raked over the coals for be a self entitled brat and I would be one of the first to land on her suggesting she lose her cell phone her car and get sent off to work camp for a summer to get a better view of real life.  
    And no one would be making excuses for a white girl using words like retarded or the N word like they are for RJ using "Cracker".

    I certainly don't disagree with that example... (none / 0) (#127)
    by melamineinNY on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 07:15:14 AM EST
    but I had a poor, uneducated, overweight etc. white girl in mind, whom I didn't imagine being spoiled in the way the witness is. It is a point that would probably be emphasised with a spoiled white girl.  

    Hopefully the jury (2.00 / 1) (#47)
    by ExcitableBoy on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:44:06 PM EST
    doesn't live in such a bubble that they don't get some of the cultural differences. But I did find myself picturing a couple sitting around a table in Kansas or some white tony suburb saying "honey, why did the black kid call the white guy the N-word? What's up with that? Pass the Grey Poupon".

    Kansas (5.00 / 1) (#96)
    by Char Char Binks on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 08:16:53 PM EST
    Yeah, that's exactly the snobby, snooty image that Kansas has.

    Ya got me on that (none / 0) (#107)
    by ExcitableBoy on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 09:59:37 PM EST
    After I hit post I realized the Kansas reference didn't go with the Poupon line (which is really old and dated, and stupid, but it's been a long day).

    I just meant some generic place in the heartland where there aren't many inner cities, so they wouldn't have experience with the changing vernacular.


    Really? even the caricature of people like that (none / 0) (#64)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:11:44 PM EST
    seems dated to me, but I suppose they are still out there.

    I think if she were a black man or white... (none / 0) (#106)
    by melamineinNY on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 09:24:50 PM EST
    woman or for sure, a white man, many the glowing excuses on her behalf would disappear. Having said that, the more I think about how improperly her first interview with investigators was conducted - most of all, sitting her beside the openly grieving mother of Trayvon, is it any wonder that she or any witness would feel intimidated into shading their initial story? It undermined anything she would testify to from then on, and the responsibility for it was wholly with State's investigators.

    I can't say for sure about these 6 women ABG (5.00 / 5) (#35)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:04:17 PM EST
    but white women in that age group of my acquaintance (and I know a lot of them)are usually pretty good at understanding people's meaning behind their words. If it were solely a communications or cultural matter, I don't think her testimony would hurt the case. The veracity of it is another question.

    I've noticed since I hit my mid-50s that people refer to middle aged women as if they are middle aged women of 100 years ago. Middle aged women of today grew up in the 60s and 70s. We are not wilting flowers at salty language or cultural differences.

    It is early in the trial...too soon to make predictions either way.


    Purely anecdotal (none / 0) (#36)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:10:56 PM EST
    When I worked at a state court in Michigan, in a large majority white county, it seemed that in general (and not just based on my OWN observations, but in speaking with many prosecutors and defense attorneys), middle-aged to older black women on juries were actually much tougher on defendants than any other subset of juror.

    So, you really never can tell.


    just guessing (none / 0) (#126)
    by TeresaInPa on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 06:50:16 AM EST
    because they know how tough life is and chose not to make excuses for people...tough love.  Or maybe just "suck it up, I had to".

    yeah (none / 0) (#125)
    by TeresaInPa on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 06:48:09 AM EST
    remember the 70s people, drugs, sex, rock and roll, communes, the woman's movement....that was us. Jeesh

    Didn't think her responses and demeanor (5.00 / 2) (#41)
    by ExcitableBoy on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:32:21 PM EST
    had anything to do with the spectacle, her race or her culture. I thought she was typical of certain teenagers, immature ones. Part of growing up (hopefully) is telling the truth in uncomfortable situations. Immature kids lie easily to avoid unpleasant conversations and situations. She lied about the hospital to avoid the wake/disappointment at not attending the wake, and about her age to avoid talking to the cops. She dismissed problems with Crump's interview by saying she didn't care about it.

    I thought she was deceitful in other areas as well, but I didn't chalk those up to immaturity. I think she knows she's the best chance to convict the guy who killed her friend. I can understand that. Take the last question from West: she understood him, didn't ask him to repeat, but there was an incredibly long pause. I could almost see the wheels turning in her head as she contemplated the best way to answer the question.

    Hopefully most of these things will change as she matures, but I don't know. I have the feeling if I met her 10 or 20 years from now, I'd feel the same way. I know too many adults of all races that remind me of her. But I felt terrible for her when I realized she can't read or write cursive. And if she can't do that, I'm sure she has other problems as well. How she can be close to graduating high school amazes me.


    Not just convict the killer of her friend (none / 0) (#130)
    by donatella on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 08:55:59 AM EST
    but of a cultural icon.  What bothered me most was her initial interview with LE.  Having Trayvon's parents and attorneys there seems unprofessional and taints all of her testimony for me.

    zimmerman (5.00 / 2) (#65)
    by morphic on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:16:28 PM EST
       You're confusing image with substance. The real problem is that DD contradicted herself at various times, and destroyed her own credibility.

    Why make excuses (5.00 / 5) (#70)
    by ding7777 on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:36:47 PM EST
    about her testimony based on age and/or race?

    Her testimony was orchestrated by Crump, influenced by TM's parents and further tainted by  Corey's office and the FDLE.

    For Bernie de la rionda to interview RJ in Sybrina Fulton's home with
    Sybrina sitting next to her and the Crump Team on hand reeks of manufactured testimony.

    And I hope the jurors can see that.


    Stereotyping and profiling (5.00 / 1) (#95)
    by Char Char Binks on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 08:13:24 PM EST
    TM calling GZ a "creepy-ass cracker" is evidence GZ stereotyping and profiling HIM?!  Your thinking  is truly AMAZING!

    If... (5.00 / 1) (#110)
    by MikeB on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 10:40:01 PM EST
    ...she was a witness for George Zimmerman, would you feel the same way? I don't care much about the lies. My biggest complaint is she had over two weeks of press coverage to refer to before making her first statement to anybody. And that was to Crump in front of Martin's mother. If the tables were turned, I would expect you to have the same reservations as many of us.

    Her story has "evolved". Zimmerman's statements have remained fixed since the immediate aftermath of the shooting. I believe there were some inconsistencies in his statement as well. Why doesn't he get a pass?

    I keep seeing a double standard.


    Rachel's testimony (3.50 / 2) (#78)
    by AndyDaniel on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:58:28 PM EST
    I watched only a part of Rachel's tetsimony but I think she was very damaging for the defense. To me, she came cross not as uncaring but rather as wholly intimidated by the proceedings. It's true that her speaking abilities seemed low but that doesn't necessarily translate into lack of credibility.

    When I heard her testify that Trayvon used two epithets, cracker, and n------, I thought it was terrible for the prosecution. But as her testimony continued, she started to come across as entirely truthful - and her testimony about the epithets only made it seem like she was telling the unvarnished truth.

    Her earlier lying to police should have been a disaster for her, but her explanation - that she didn't want to see the body and lied to Trayvon's parents as to why she missed their son's wake - is credible and does much to recast her from simply a liar to a much more sensitive person.

    Finally, if the jury believes her that Trayvon thought he had ditched Zimmeman but then "Oh s---, the n----'s behind me", this contradicts Zimmerman's story of returning to his car and having Martin sneak up behind him and hit him.


    Really?? (5.00 / 5) (#80)
    by bmaz on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:12:21 PM EST
    That just explains away perjury under oath to you? Amazing. Yes, I just didn't want to be inconvenienced, so I perjured myself. Very credible.

    intimidated? (5.00 / 4) (#82)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:14:51 PM EST
    That's a laugh. Of all the words I would use to describe her in court, that fits the least. She was bossy, sarcastic, petulant and rude. She tried to make it seem her knowledge was superior to West's. Did you see her spout off the days and times of her depositions? She resented having to testify and she let everyone know it.

    zimmerman (none / 0) (#92)
    by morphic on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:49:00 PM EST
      The problem with DD's explanation is simple enough. She claimed Trayvon was near his father's house, the phone disonnected.Twenty seconds later she got a connection, than minutes later, the incident occurs. Since she couldn't see, what near his father's house means is debatable, but it probably doesn't mean he was far away.

    So basically you're setting yourself up to (none / 0) (#85)
    by Jack203 on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:22:15 PM EST
    blame the white jury....That was a rhetorical question.  Of course you are.

    And you and the rest of your community should be people first, and not black people.

    Fear not, the trial isn't going badly for you so far in my opinion.   You just might get your pound of flesh after all.


    An otherwise strong case? (none / 0) (#112)
    by me only on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 10:58:44 PM EST
    Without Rachel there is no murder 2 charge.  The state has zero evidence of depraved indifference w/o her.  If they did, they would not have had her take the stand.

    It appears to me the point of the murder 2 charge was to provide the jury with manslaughter as a "reasonable" alternative.


    OK (1.00 / 1) (#149)
    by squeaky on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 01:31:40 PM EST
    So, apparently if the jury delivers a quick verdict, you are going be the one to slur them?

    Odd, but given the emotions people have about this case, I guess expecting rational dialogue from some TL commenters is to much to expect.

    Don't accuse me of something you think I might (none / 0) (#157)
    by Angel on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 05:22:58 PM EST
    do.  I am waiting to hear all of the evidence before making any comments regarding guilt.  I'm the one defending the jury in this conversation, not you. I will bet you that even if they are unanimous in their decision it will take much longer to reach that conclusion than the 5 minutes suggested by the original poster:  20 minutes total less 15 minutes for bathroom breaks = 5 minutes.  

    Accuse? (1.00 / 1) (#159)
    by squeaky on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 05:47:46 PM EST
    I am not accusing you of anything, just forced to make hypotheticals because you refuse to explain why it would be a slur to suggest that the jury would decide a case in 20 minutes.

    If a jury decides in 20 minutes, I would take it to mean that they were all on the same page, and unanimously believed that either the defense or prosecutor made a very solid case.

    Thinking them idiots, or not doing their job, would be the last thing that would occur to me, particularly given this case is widely followed.


    Did prosecutor object as calling for (none / 0) (#2)
    by oculus on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:20:11 PM EST
    speculation as to question whether, in the opinion of this lay witness, Martin was racially profiling Zimmerman?

    Not that I saw. (none / 0) (#4)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:35:44 PM EST
    It was pretty eye opening for me to see how both attorney's phrased their questions such that the only answer by RJ was generally "yes" or "no." The questions almost seemed like they was giving her the answer they wanted to hear. I guess that's how lawyers do it, I've never watched this stuff before.

    A lot of leading questions (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by MKS on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 04:42:01 PM EST
    That is the idea for the Defense during cross-examinations.

    But on Re-direct, the State attorney led too.  Defense counsel objected, and the court sustained a couple of questions as leading and then started to overrule such objections.

    It certainly looked like the State attorney wanted to control her testimony and was really worried what she would say.....

    Defense counsel asked a number of questions  about Martin's intent. As I recall, the State Attorney objected the questions were argumentative (not calling for speculation.)  I thought he was just getting his idea out there, and didn't care what the witness said.  The Judge did sustain a couple of the objections.  But the witness also got the opportunity to strongly deny the assertion.

    Not sure any of this mattered.


    I think a lot of it today was because they (5.00 / 0) (#91)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:44:54 PM EST
    saw yesterday how hard it was to hear and transcribe anything much more than yes or no. I don't blame them for putting it in that form as a huge timesaver whenever possible.

    iow, RJ never really gave her own opinion. (none / 0) (#7)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:44:36 PM EST
    Generally, opinions were presented to her and she was asked if she agreed with them, or if they represented her opinion, etc., and she either agreed or disagreed.

    have there been experts in (none / 0) (#10)
    by TeresaInPa on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:47:07 PM EST
    racial profiling? Are Crump or Mr Martin experts in racial profiling?
    For that matter, didn't RJ not say she thought this was a racial incident because of of the description of Zimmerman as being a cracker? So if the prosecution didn't object to that how could they object to the other?

    I don't think she really gave (none / 0) (#18)
    by rjarnold on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 03:15:14 PM EST
    a clear incident in whether it was racial or not. I think I remember he answered at one point it was and at another point it wasn't.

    She said something yesterday in (none / 0) (#94)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:58:44 PM EST
    answer to why she agreed to an interview with Crump that it was because it was a "racial thing". I didn't take it as those were her words but she just repeated what Crump or someone else told her.

    I honestly think her testimony was a stalemate and only for sure tells the jury when the last time they know Trayvon was alive.


    please stay on topic of (none / 0) (#11)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 02:48:37 PM EST
    Rachel Jeantel's testimony. This is not a thread to argue about the gunshot which she didn't hear. She had lost phone contact with Travyon Martin before the shot.

    Wet grass (none / 0) (#43)
    by ackbarsays on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:40:55 PM EST
    Did anyone figure out what she meant by hearing wet grass?  I will note that when she originally spoke with prosecutors, it was "the grass thing" and now it's "wet grass."  Did that detail about the grass that she heard being wet just come to her recently?  It could be crucial to this case.

    I took that as (none / 0) (#55)
    by ExcitableBoy on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:59:21 PM EST
    her tailoring her testimony to meet the desired outcome. Like when she knew Zimmerman confronted Trayvon because she could tell the difference between the sound of wind passing by someone who's stationary versus someone who's moving. Or her earlier (pre-trial) statement that she heard the sound of Travyon getting pushed (as opposed to Trayvon pushing someone).

    West asked her what she meant by that (none / 0) (#56)
    by ruffian on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 05:59:39 PM EST
    As I recall she said something about the sounds of people rolling around on grass.

    Interestingly a later witness, one of the women from a 911 call, made a distinction between the sounds she heard of scuffling on the sidewalk and scuffling on the wet grass.


    I don't think they'll ever know (none / 0) (#57)
    by melamineinNY on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:00:21 PM EST
    I assumed she meant the sound of sneakers on wet grass, for instance, slippery wet on wet, but it's not a reliable sound for anyone to identify by phone and probably not significant.

    I found her whole testimony very interesting... (none / 0) (#58)
    by Cashmere on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:00:27 PM EST
    I found Rachel believable for some of it, and unbelievable for other parts (when I have been able to watch).

    What does anyone think about the fact that she was in the bathroom, doing her hair, at I believe the time that she claims to hear Trayvon say "a little bit of get off", or something to that effect.  I think in testimony today, when asked about this by West, she stated that she had no water on (and I assume no blow dryer either), and I also assume West had no "real" idea what to enquire about when a woman is doing her hair! ;).  Yes, women can be incredible multi-taskers, but there has to be some consideration as to how focused she was listening to this particular part of the conversation.  When one is on the phone for "hours" over the course of the day, in my opinion, the focus on the conversation can dwindle a bit.

    Also, as I watch, I am struck by how controlled the court is in determining what the jury can and cannot hear.  If the jury truly has little knowledge of the case "incoming", then so far, I can see them ruling for the prosecution.  However, the defense has yet to present their case (and the prosecution has yet to finish).

    I heard reports following ?Mora's? testimony today that she was a very strong witness for the prosecution, backing up Rachel's testimony.  Any thoughts about this?  

    Rachel testified that she was using the iron on (none / 0) (#61)
    by Angel on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:07:03 PM EST
    her hair at the time, and that doesn't involve any running water, and also that the door was closed.  She also said she was using a Bluetooth connection, so that would mean her hands were free and she could listen and speak on the phone.  As far as Ms. Mora's testimony, she testified that she saw someone crouching over someone else who was on the ground, and that the person who had been crouching was the one who got up and walked away.  She was strong in her testimony and O'Mara was not able to impeach her in any way from what I saw and heard.  I watched the entire trial yesterday and today.  

    Crouching over? (none / 0) (#63)
    by jbindc on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:09:54 PM EST
    Like someone who could be checking on someone - not necessarily "on top of someone?"

    (Asking for clarification purposes, as I did not watch the testimony).


    Well, to this, as a woman myself..... (none / 0) (#69)
    by Cashmere on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:36:09 PM EST
    I predict that the "all women jury" will take a look at her comment of using the iron on her hair a bit more closely.  When I have used irons on my hair in the past, even with multiple things going on in the house, kids and husband requesting my attention, I would spend some time focused on how my hair looked.  Just my opinion, but the female jury may question how focused Rachel was on the conversation (via bluetooth).  

    Re: Mora, I thought that Zimmerman's statements claimed that after he shot Martin, he was not certain that he hit Martin, and straddled Martin following the shot  (may have been in his re-enactment).  Also, I think Martin's jeans (trousers, pants), clearly show grass stains on them (knees) and I don't believe the pics of Zimmerman's jeans shown in trial thus far do.  This is for the defense to prove.

    Will be interesting to see how this case proceeds.  Thanks for your reply and the info!



    I don't think the witness said or implied that (none / 0) (#74)
    by Angel on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:50:03 PM EST
    Zimmerman was on his knees, he was just in a position that straddled the other person, so he wouldn't necessarily have any grass stains on his knees.  

    After the gunshot... (none / 0) (#73)
    by Cylinder on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 06:44:33 PM EST
    ...just like Zimmerman claimed in his own narrative.

    she's talkign about after the gunshot (none / 0) (#84)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:19:25 PM EST
    It has nothing to do with before the shot which she didn't see.

    O'Mara was just on Anderson Cooper (none / 0) (#87)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:33:08 PM EST
    AC asked about the prosecutor interviewing Rachel the first time with her sitting on the couch beside Trayvon's mom. He pulled no punches about the prosecutor (I blank out on spelling his name) in his answer. None at all. If you get a chance to see a replay later, watch it.

    They might replay it on the 10:00 show which is devoted to the trial. They get things wrong, but it's less wrong than other commentary I've seen from both sides.

    Sorry to double post (none / 0) (#88)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 07:34:25 PM EST
    AC said O'Mara had a press conference after trial today. Did anyone see it? I wouldn't be surprised to see the judge zip their lips now.

    You can delete this, I saw your pic (none / 0) (#105)
    by Teresa on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 09:07:55 PM EST
    in the forum. My Twitter is the regular Twitter and it doesn't look like that. That's the old old Twitter and I don't think it's even usable anymore. It tells you you have to update something. I can't remember exactly but that's how it looked years ago.

    Mine has "Following" at the side where hers has "follow". She has to click that and it changes to "following", so I'm confused. It's OT anyway. Sorry.

    That would only make the local news (none / 0) (#114)
    by Jack203 on Thu Jun 27, 2013 at 11:11:42 PM EST
    Not exactly all the time, but I'm sure it's happened hundreds of times over the years.

    But why even bother?  Do you think Trayvon actually wanted to or would have killed GZ?  I certainly don't. Not my position. But if I was in George's shoes at the moment, dazed, beat up, bleeding, a firearm at your side.  I think fear of significant harm or death is reasonable.

    Here is my question for the Trayvonite.  Can you name any other instance of a fight between two parties where one guy is beat up BADLY, but the guy who was doing the beat down with zero defensive wounds, was screaming at the top of his
    lungs for 45 seconds HELP!!.

    Its utterly and completely preposterous.   And that is what the prosecution has to say exactly what happened BEYOND a reasonable doubt (>95%).

    I deleted that comment (5.00 / 1) (#120)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 03:53:10 AM EST
    I have repeatedly warned Ricky not to ask readers to help prove the prosecution case. He portrays himself as open to Zimmerman's defense but too often asks stealth questions like that one. Perhaps it's his phrasing but he's also been on notice to watch how he phrases things. This is the second time in a week. He is sounding more and more like a stealth commenter. Commenters may not use this site to try and build a case for the prosecution in areas they fall short.

    Really? (none / 0) (#139)
    by Jack203 on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 11:14:40 AM EST
    A stealth prosecutor commentator.

    Well I could see why someone being disingenuous would annoy you.  

    I've enjoyed his informative, thought provoking posts over the previous months...if that matters.  


    Thank You Jack (none / 0) (#163)
    by RickyJim on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 07:27:04 PM EST
    for your kind words.  I also thank Jeralyn for some belly laughs.  The question she deleted came up in a debate with Susan Simpson of View from L2.  Susan is very pro prosecution and unable to answer my defense oriented analysis, she challenged me with that question.  I really didn't answer directly but gave her a link to FBI statistics that show over the 5 year period 2007-2011, around 800 homicides a year are accomplished by hands or feet instead of guns or knives.

    why people carry guns (none / 0) (#140)
    by friendofinnocence on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 11:37:03 AM EST
    I would just like to point out that one of the reasons people carry guns is to take the decision of whether or not they are going to be shot, stabbed, or beat to death out of the hands of someone who is attacking or threatening them, and put it in their own.

    McWhorter and Hayes on West and Jeantel (none / 0) (#119)
    by obsessed on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 12:40:42 AM EST
    Listen to McWhorter's analysis of the linguistics.


    names for each other. (none / 0) (#132)
    by Jack203 on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 09:35:29 AM EST
    I find it sad Nelson got in the act allowing the prosecution to call George "wannabe cop".

    Jeralyn (none / 0) (#135)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 10:09:16 AM EST
    How long do you think this case lasts?  What is you estimate for when we would likely have a verdict? Are we talking a month?  A few weeks?


    About 20 minutes after the jury gets the case (2.60 / 5) (#137)
    by Payaso on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 10:57:39 AM EST
    What is you estimate for when we would likely have a verdict?

    I estimate a verdict about 20 minutes after the jury gets the case.  That's because it will take 15 minutes for them to all use the bathroom.


    My impression is that when a verdict is not... (none / 0) (#150)
    by melamineinNY on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 01:52:51 PM EST
    quickly delivered - when a quick verdict is justified by common sense and evidence - many people start making excuses that the jury "needs to" have time to go over "all" the evidence, that it would be irresponsible of them not to, etc.  This is what I saw with the Jodi Arias trial, where many trial watchers refused to believe what the long, drawn-out deliberations - relative to the obviousness of what they believed the verdict should be - meant. It meant that there was serious conflict among jurors, something that was later confirmed, though the jurors in that case failed their duty in the third phase to address their conflict. Not that I believe this case is so clear-cut in every respect. According to FL law it seems like a pretty good case of unintended consequences more than anything criminal and that's what makes it even more tragic in a way, whether GZ is convicted of anything or acquitted.

    I've no idea what will happen in that jury room (none / 0) (#152)
    by Mr Natural on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 02:21:00 PM EST
    but there seems to be plenty of reasonable doubt in play here.

    My experience is that juries (none / 0) (#155)
    by Payaso on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 03:54:38 PM EST
    take a short break, then sit down and elect a foreman.  Then they take a vote to see where everybody stands.  If they all agree they notify the bailiff that they have a verdict.

    20 minutes is about the shortest possible time.

    I was on the jury for a murder trial (none / 0) (#162)
    by TeresaInPa on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 07:14:29 PM EST
    in Broward county Florida.  There were 12 of us I think.  It was murder one.  The defendant was 17. There were actually two boys charged but they were tried separately.  It was armed robbery and murder by gun shot.  
    We did take a break, elected a foreman and took a vote.  We were not in agreement. But it only took us a few hours and would have taken less if I did not manipulate/argue the jury in to considering both sides, prosecution and defense.  I thought it was the least we could do.  I felt it was the least we could do for this kid.  Ultimately we found him guilty.  
    Looking back on it now, I think a better lawyer might have won the case for him. As it was the prosecution was just so much better at presenting their case.

    If they all agree (none / 0) (#156)
    by Payaso on Fri Jun 28, 2013 at 03:56:22 PM EST
    there is nothing to discuss.

    Sybrina? (none / 0) (#165)
    by labrat on Sat Jun 29, 2013 at 06:16:06 AM EST

    Early in the cross of RJ (I think), my radar went off. RJ doesn't like and seems scared of "the mother". It's the part where she was talking about how she ended up agreeing to be deposed and her mother was talked into consenting to an interview. She seems seriously intimidated by Sybrina. Given that we now know that BDLR deposed her with Sybrina sitting right next to her - what do you make of that? From a legal perspective? Is this significant? The whole thing struck me as really bizarre - I can't imagine how RJ's testimony can even be in evidence anymore since she's such an obviously tainted witness. Interested in your take.

    I think it is (none / 0) (#167)
    by Jeralyn on Sat Jun 29, 2013 at 08:22:56 PM EST
    unusual and bad policy for a prosecutor to interview a person who claims to have knowledge of an event under investigation while the family of the alleged victim is sitting right there. Keep in mind the state didn't find this witness, the Martins and their lawyers found her. But it doesn't affect admissibility, it goes to weight of the evidence. In other words, the jury can hear it give it whatever weight they choose. They can also disregard it entirely. From Florida's credibility instruction:

    ....You should consider how the witnesses acted, as well as what they said. Some things you should consider are:(my underlining)

    1. Did the witness seem to have an opportunity to see and know the things about which the witness testified?
    2. Did the witness seem to have an accurate memory?
    3. Was the witness honest and straightforward in answering the attorneys' questions?
    4. Did the witness have some interest in how the case should be decided?
    5. Does the witness's testimony agree with the other testimony and other evidence in the case?
    Give as applicable.
    1. Has the witness been offered or received any money, preferred treatment, or other benefit in order to get the witness to testify?
    2. Had any pressure or threat been used against the witness that affected the truth of the witness's testimony?
    3. Did the witness at some other time make a statement that is inconsistent with the testimony [he] [she] gave in court?
    4. Has the witness been convicted of a [felony] [misdemeanor involving [dishonesty] [false statement]]?
    5. Does the witness have a general reputation for [dishonesty] [truthfulness]?.

    After the trial opinon of Rachel Jeantel (none / 0) (#171)
    by Manny on Sat Jul 20, 2013 at 03:15:17 AM EST
    I know I'm late to this party, but I did not pay attention to the trial while it was happening because of the MSM's absolutely ridiculous bias to find Zimmerman guilty.  However, after the verdict I did watch Zimmerman's walk through account of events, and then Rachel Jeantel's testimony all the way through.
    RJ puzzled me at first, and I could see she was deliberately mumbling and slurring in order not to be understood.  I took that to mean she did not want to be there testifying, and she wanted off the stand as quickly and painlessly as possible.  As I listened to her testimony however, I found myself thinking, this girl is not dumb, ignorant, or stupid.  She knows enough about the court system to know not to offer any information outside of what is directly asked, and to strictly answer only what is asked, even if she knows it may be misleading.
    I am sure West was questioning her the way he was to show several things: 1) that she is willing to lie when it serves her purpose, 2) that she omitted things she added later, and 3) her versions changed as time went on.
    After listening to all her testimony, I came to the conclusion that she didn't take any action after the phone disconnected with TM because I believe she heard much more than she admitted.  I believe TM's headset did not come off, and even if it did, I think she heard GZ yelling "help" and then she heard TM say to GZ "you gonna die tonight motherf*c*er."  And although the phone disconnected before the gunshot, I think when she didn't hear back from TM, she thought he killed somebody.  I believe that's why she didn't call police.  And I believe she was shocked when she found out TM was the one who died, and she realized she knew something that would show he was the aggressor, and telling that would make her a snitch.  That's why she didn't want to talk about it at school, that's why she didn't want to go to the wake and funeral, that's why she didn't want to talk to TM's mother, or the Martin's attorney, and why she was waiting for the police to contact her.  She knew it was only a matter of time that they would. But then, how could she tell that part with SM sitting right next to her on the couch, holding her hand, in SM's own house? I believe she wanted it all to just go away.  And I think West was on to her.
    She so reminded me of the classic definition of a hostile witness, even though the prosecution did not declare her to be one.  And I think West thought she knew more than she was saying, and he was trying to show that by getting her to admit she omitted other things TM said (like not telling SM that TM used the term, creepy a** cracker, and adding only at the April 2nd interview that she heard more than she first had said "a little, get off, get off") and I think he was suggesting she was omitting hearing TM say, "you gonna die tonight m'fer", because she knew to say that would make it clear GZ acted in self defense.  I think that's why she seemed more and more testy near the very end of the cross-examination, when West was forcing her to answer questions about the last phone call almost second by second.  Look at her eyes during that exchange.  She appeared to be getting very angry.  I think she knew he was trying to trip her up, to get her to slip and say something more, something she was withholding.  
    Anyone who thought she was dumb, or ignorant, or stupid, or even just a teenager...I just don't agree.  I think she was a hostile witness

    Correcting an error (none / 0) (#172)
    by Manny on Sat Jul 20, 2013 at 04:14:11 AM EST
    After I hit POST, I realized I referred to TM's mother as SM, thinking her last name was Martin.  I then realized I should have put SF, Sybrina Fulton.  Thanks.

    Site Violator (none / 0) (#175)
    by McBain on Tue Mar 24, 2020 at 09:38:59 AM EST
    I presume but interesting to go back in time and read some of the other comments in this tread.