Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Rachel Jeantel: "Trayvon Noticed A Man Looking At Him, A “Creepy, White, Kill-My-Neighbors Cracker!”

On the third day of testimony in the George Zimmerman murder trial, the prosecution called what could be the most pivotal witness of all: Rachel Jeantel, the friend who was on the phone with 17 year-old Trayvon Martin until moments before Zimmerman shot and killed him. In the early part of her testimony, Jeantel described her conversation with Trayvon, in which he notices a man looking at him, a man Jeantel says Martin described as a “creepy, white, kill-my-neighbors cracker,” and a “creepy-ass cracker,” to which she joked that he “might be a rapist.”

The credibility of Jeantel’s testimony is crucial, because it establishes George Zimmerman as the aggressor, and contradicts the defense’s contention that Mr. Zimmerman did not pursue Trayvon Martin after the police dispatcher instructed him that they didn’t need him to do that. The phone call also represents a two-minute overlap between the time Zimmerman hung up woth the dispatcher, and when he made contact with Trayvon Martin.

The prosecution asked Rachel Jeantel what Trayvon Martin was complaining to her about on the phone, as he walked home.

“That a man just kept watching him,” she replied.

After the judge overruled a defense objection, the prosecutor continued, “Did you say anything back to him or did he say anything back to you?”

“Yes,” Jeantel replied. “I asked him how the man looked like. He just told me the man — the man looked creepy.”

“He said the man looked creepy?” the prosecutor asked.

“Creepy, white, kill-my-neighbors cracker,” Jeantel replied, and when asked to repeat her testimony a few times, added, “He looked like a creepy ass cracker.”

“He told me the man was looking at him,” she added, “so I had to think it might have been a rapist. Might have been a rapist.”

Jeantel’s testimony bogged down for several minutes because the defense and the court reporter were having trouble understanding her testimony.

Here’s the clip, from HLN:


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Martin’s Friend Breaks Down During Tough Cross-Examination: ‘I Didn’t Want To See The Body’

After revealing some shocking information about the content of her final phone call with Trayvon Martin during her testimony to the prosecution this afternoon, witness Rachel Jeantel was faced with a tough cross-examination by George Zimmerman‘s defense attorney Don West. Much of the cross-examination revolved around Jeantel’s decision not to attend Martin’s funeral, which at time she attributed to being in the hospital. It turns out, that was a lie.

Jeantel became emotional when recounting the real reason she did not want to attend Martin’s funeral. “I didn’t want to see the body,” she told West. “You’ve got to understand, you’re the last person to talk to the person and he died on the phone after you talked to him? You’ve got to understand what I’m trying to tell you. I’m the last person… You don’t know how I felt. You think I really want to go see the body after I just talked to him?”

But West pressed her on why she decided to lie about her decision to stay home that day. “What you did in order to explain that to Ms. Fulton,” he said, referring to Martin’s mother, “and then to Mr. de la Rionda,” the lead prosecutor in the case, “under oath is that you created a lie and said you had gone to the hospital?”

“Yes,” Jeantel replied.

While the defense team succeeded in getting Jeantel to admit to a series of lies on the stand, she may have also creating some sympathy with the jury for the obvious emotional toll the ordeal has taken on her.


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