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Officer Testifies in Zimmerman Trial; Officer's Interview with George Zimmerman.

Aired July 1, 2013 - 11:30   ET





SINGLETON: Townhouses, OK. Retreat?

ZIMMERMAN: Retreat at John Lakes.

SINGLETON: Retreat at John Lakes. OK. You started a --

ZIMMERMAN: Neighborhood watch.


ZIMMERMAN: (INAUDIBLE). And I was the coordinator. There has been a few times where I've seen a suspicious person in the neighborhood. We call police on a non-emergency line, and these guys always get away.


SINGLETON: What made them suspicious?

ZIMMERMAN: This gentleman, in particular, I have never seen him in the neighborhood. I know all the residents. It was raining out. He was leisurely walking, taking his time, looking at all the houses. When I drove by, he stopped and looked at me.

SINGLETON: Had you seen him before?



ZIMMERMAN: I know all the kids in my neighborhood, all the adults in my neighborhood. I guess it was raining. He was just walking casually, not like he was trying to get out of the rain.


BERNIE DE LA RIONDA, PROSECUTOR: Tell us what happened?

SINGLETON: Sergeant Santiago was still at the crime scene and he had tripped my Nextel phone. And he wanted me to find out --


ASHLEIGH BANFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: Detective Doris Singleton on the stand, direct examination, and her critical part of this story is she took George Zimmerman's statement. Maybe even more critical, she didn't know what went on. She wasn't at the scene. She was at the P.D., the police department. She took his interrogation in one of those interrogation rooms and recorded it. Let's listen.

SINGLETON: So he can look at the phone. (INAUDIBLE)

DE LA RIONDA: Meaning phone, meaning the defendant's phone, Mr. Zimmerman's phone?

SINGLETON: Yes, his cell phone.


SINGLETON: Leeland Management (ph). So for Leeland (ph) Management, Orlando, the contact person is Kent Taylor? But he doesn't have the phone number on him.



DE LA RIONDA: When the sergeant asked you to find out, the 43, what do you mean by that?

SINGLETON: That's for information. 43 is just a 10-code for information. But I haven't gone out of the room yet based on what I just heard.



SINGLETON: Do you know where your phone is right now?

ZIMMERMAN: They took it from me.

SINGLETON: With these officers? I'll be right back.

ZIMMERMAN: Do you mind giving me your cell number? (INAUDIBLE)


DE LA RIONDA: Now at this point, are you asking the defendant to find or look at his phone and get the phone number that he just talked about?

SINGLETON: Yes, I went and retrieved the phone, brought it back to the room, handed it to him, asked him if he wouldn't mind looking up the phone number that was being requested.


ZIMMERMAN: 407-781-1181. The HOA president might also know.

SINGLETON: What's his name?

ZIMMERMAN: Don. D-O-N. It's 407-790-0054. (INAUDIBLE)

SINGLETON: Thank you.




DE LA RIONDA: What's going on now? Are you relaying that information for the Sergeant Santiago?

SINGLETON: Yes, I believe I walked out of the room and relayed that information to Nextel outside of the room.

DE LA RIONDA: Even though you walked out of the room, the recording was still going on?

SINGLETON: Yes, the recorder remained inside the room.

BANFIELD: So just to let you know what's happening right now, this is a tape being played raw, stop and start. The prosecutor, Bernie de la Rionda, is playing this for the woman who actually ran the tape. She walked out of the interrogation room. She came back into the interrogation room. So you are hearing it as it played out.


ZIMMERMAN: I had called before and the police had come. But he says he knows the neighborhood very well. He cut in-between buildings --


SINGLETON: You say these guys, who are these guys?

ZIMMERMAN: The people coming in, the burglars.

SINGLETON: So you are seeing more than one person looking suspicious and doing these burglaries?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: You never did see this guy prior to tonight or you don't know?

ZIMMERMAN: I called a few times. You guys probably have records half of like a dozen times.

SINGLETON: OK. ZIMMERMAN: And this time, I was leaving to go to the grocery store. Like I said, I saw him walking in the neighborhood, seen him in front of the same house that I had called the police before to come to because this guy leaves his doors unlocked and stuff. He was walking leisurely, looking at the houses. So I just pulled my car to the side and I called the non-emergency line.

SINGLETON: Were you armed at this point?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: You were or were you not?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am. I called the non-emergency line. I just reported that there was a suspicious person in the neighborhood. The dispatcher or the person that answered the phone asked me where they went, I said I wasn't sure because I lost visual of him in between the houses. He said, can you tell me what direction you went? I said, not really. All of a sudden, I see him circling my car. And then he goes back into the darkness. So --

SINGLETON: So you (INAUDIBLE). So you are headed down the road?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: Are you on the phone? He dips between two houses?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.


ZIMMERMAN: Correct. He comes back out, circles my car while I was on the phone with police.

SINGLETON: OK. Did he say anything to you?

ZIMMERMAN: I couldn't hear. The windows were up. As soon as I saw him come out, I rolled up the windows and stayed on the phone with the dispatcher.

SINGLETON: Your car was running?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: The lights were on?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: You said he seen you in your car?


SINGLETON: Is he walking completely around the car?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.


ZIMMERMAN: Dispatch asked where he went. I didn't know the street that I was on. I --

SINGLETON: So you come off your street on to another street?

ZIMMERMAN: He goes in, cuts through the middle of my neighborhood.


ZIMMERMAN: I didn't know the name of the street or where he went. I got out of my car to look for the street signs and to see if I could see where he cut through so I could tell the police.

SINGLETON: So after he circled your car, he disappeared again?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.


ZIMMERMAN: Then the dispatcher told me, where are you? I said, I'm trying to find out where he went. He said, well, we don't need you to do that. I said, OK. He said we already have a police officer en route. I said, all right. I had gone where -- through the dog walk where I normally walk my dog, and walked back through to my street, the street that loops around. He said, we already have a police officer on the way, so I said, OK. I told -- they said, would you like a police officer to meet you? I said, yes. And I told them where my car was and the make and the model. So I was walking back through to where my car was. He jumped out from the bushes. And he said (AUDIO PROBLEM) -- and I got -- (AUDIO PROBLEM) -- I don't have a problem. He says now you have a problem and he punched me in the nose. At that point, I fell down. I tried to defend myself. He started to punch me in the face and I started screaming for help. I couldn't see. I couldn't breathe. Then he started taking me --


SINGLETON: Are you still standing at this point?

ZIMMERMAN: No, ma'am. I fell to the ground when he punched me the first time.


ZIMMERMAN: I didn't even see him getting ready to punch me. As soon as he punched me, I fell backwards into the grass. Then he grabbed -- he was wailing on my head and then I started yelling "help." When I started yelling for help, he grabbed my head and started hitting my head into the -- I tried to sit up and, yell for help. He grabbed my head and started hitting me into the sidewalk. When he started doing that, I slid into the grass to try and get out from under him so he would stop hitting my head into the sidewalk. I still was yelling for help. And I could see people looking, and some guy yells out, I'm calling 911. I said, help me, help me, he's killing me. And he puts his hand on my nose and on my mouth, and he said, you're going to die tonight. And I don't remember much after that. I just remember I couldn't breathe. And then he still kept trying to hit my head against the pavement or -- I don't know if there was a sign or what it was. So when I just -- when I slid, my jacket and my shirt came up, and when he said, you're going to die tonight, I felt his hand go down on my side. I thought he was going for my firearm. So I grabbed it immediately. As he banged my head again, I just pulled out my firearm and shot him.

SINGLETON: OK. Then what happened? You are both on the ground?

ZIMMERMAN: I'm on my back.


ZIMMERMAN: He's on top of me. He's mounted on top of me. I just shot him and then he falls off, and he said, all right, you got it, you got it.

SINGLETON: Does he fall to the side and he stays laying on the ground?

ZIMMERMAN: I -- my vision was blurry and --

SINGLETON: You felt him fall toward you? He somehow ended up (INAUDIBLE) or you don't know?

ZIMMERMAN: I don't remember. I think, when I shot him, it might have pushed him back. But I remember -- I didn't know what he was hitting me -- it felt like he was hitting me with bricks. I remember, once I shot him, my holster, my firearm, and I got on top of him, I held his hands up because he was still talking. And I said, stay down, don't move. And then somebody comes out, and I couldn't see, there was a flashlight to my head, I asked if it was a police officer, and he said, no, it was a witness, but he was calling the police. I said, the police are on their way, they should be here already, because I had called them. And he's like, I'm calling the police. I said, I don't need you to call police, I need you to help me with this guy. Then an officer shows up. Again, he had the flashlight, so I couldn't see him. And he asked me, who shot this guy? And I said, I did. I immediately put my hands on top of my head. I told the police officer where my firearm was. And then he cuffed me and took it from there.

SINGLETON: After you shot, he said, you got me?


SINGLETON: When you got on top, did he say anything else?

ZIMMERMAN: He said, ow, ow.

SINGLETON: You said you were -- you had walked back there to try to find out where he went. Were you already on the phone with dispatch? You said you called up and the whole time you were on the phone?


SINGLETON: Were you still on the phone when he jumped out and you had hung up?


SINGLETON: Did someone else call before the shot? He said he was already calling, right? You said you heard someone saying I'm calling?


SINGLETON: OK. So someone else might have been on the line with dispatch while you were being beat up?


SINGLETON: You had never seen this guy before?

ZIMMERMAN: I don't recall. It's always dark. They always come around nighttime.

SINGLETON: What did he look like?

ZIMMERMAN: African-American, early 20s, late teens. He was taller than me, so I would say six-footish. Slender build.

SINGLETON: Did you know what he was wearing?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, I gave description over the phone, a hoodie, and either sweat pants or jeans.

SINGLETON: All dark-colored stuff?

ZIMMERMAN: No, the hoodie was grey. The sweat pants were like knee length, a denim color, like stone-washed denim.

SINGLETON: What was his hairstyle?


SINGLETON: So you couldn't see?


SINGLETON: OK. All right. How is your head?

ZIMMERMAN: I can't feel it.

SINGLETON: Who told you -- you said when I came in here, someone told you broke your nose? They told you that. Did you need to go to the hospital?

ZIMMERMAN: I don't know. They said I didn't.

SINGLETON: Is this bump -- I can't tell what's normal for you.


SINGLETON: Can you see, like right here, does this, does that look like an intrusion? It looks swollen?


DE LA RIONDA: Are you examining the sides of his head at that time?

SINGLETON: I stood up and came to his side of the table so I could see all sides of his head.


SINGLETON: The person who said "I'm calling the police," did you recognize that person?

ZIMMERMAN: No, ma'am.

SINGLETON: You don't know if they were a resident or?

ZIMMERMAN: They were looking out their back patio.


SINGLETON: So it was somebody that was looking from a residence --


SINGLETON: Did you see more than that just that person?


SINGLETON: You saw that person, and they said, I'm calling?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: Nobody came over to assist in pulling him off? You were between two houses when this happened?

ZIMMERMAN: Behind the houses.

SINGLETON: You were behind the houses?

ZIMMERMAN: There's a row of house, yes.

SINGLETON: So there was a row of houses you had gone behind and you were on your way back out?


SINGLETON: Was there one house?


ZIMMERMAN: Would you like me to draw it?


ZIMMERMAN: The neighborhood is like a square like this. Then there is a row of houses, there is a wall. There's houses here. There's another row of houses here. This is houses. I parked my car here. Mailboxes here. He went through this dog walk here. You can either go down the sidewalk here between this row of houses or you can go straight through to the street. So this is asphalt --



ZIMMERMAN: This is asphalt. I walked through to see if there was a street sign that I could tell dispatch where I lost sight of him. When I walked back, that's when he came out of darkness, and I guess he was upset that I called the police.

SINGLETON: This is behind the house that he comes out of darkness?


SINGLETON: Behind the building? You said there's some bushes he may have come out it.

ZIMMERMAN: Because when I walked past, I didn't see him. I walked through to make sure -- I looked to make sure he wasn't there. I walked straight through to see the street sign. When I came back he was waiting somewhere.

SINGLETON: Where is your cell phone? Where was your cell phone? Had you already had it back in your pocket? Did it get dropped? What happened with your cell phone?

ZIMMERMAN: No. I had it in my hand. When he -- when they said, "Would you like the police officer to meet you," I said yes, my car is there.


SINGLETON: That's when they disconnected with you?



ZIMMERMAN: So I did. I put my cell phone away.


ZIMMERMAN: When I walked back towards him, I saw him coming at me. I went to grab my phone. I don't remember if I had time to pull it out or not.

SINGLETON: You attempted to try to recall that.

ZIMMERMAN: To call the police. 911, because the first time I called 911 --

(CROSSTALK) SINGLETON: You're not sure if you got it out of your pocket or not?


SINGLETON: That's when he slapped you?

ZIMMERMAN: He just hit me.

SINGLETON: What did he say before that? He asked you something like, "Do you have a problem".

ZIMMERMAN: He said, "You have a problem with me." I said, "I don't have a problem." And he said, now -- (AUDIO PROBLEM).

SINGLETON: That's what knocked you down?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: You're saying this is behind the building?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: Is it a patio? Because you said he's hitting your head on a sidewalk.

ZIMMERMAN: No, no, I said it's the sidewalk.

SINGLETON: There's a sidewalk behind it?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes. It's a dog walk.


ZIMMERMAN: This is a row of houses and this is a row of houses.


ZIMMERMAN: So I walked back here.

SINGLETON: So the dog walk is cement?


SINGLETON: OK, that makes sense. He's hitting your head on the dog walk?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes. As I went to sit up, he grabbed me by the --

SINGLETON: When you look either to your left or right, you can see this guy and you're saying help me.

ZIMMERMAN: I don't remember. I screamed help me probably 50 times as loud as I could.

SINGLETON: OK. At some point, you could see there was someone saying something to you from a patio? ZIMMERMAN: Yes.

SINGLETON: Do you remember what that person looked like? And the police got there.

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: And you were holding him down?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.


ZIMMERMAN: Once the police got there, I got on my feet because there was another person that got there -- I guess, a resident. I could see. He had a flashlight. I thought he was a police officer.

SINGLETON: At that point, you got off him?



ZIMMERMAN: When the police got there, I was already standing up.


SINGLETON: We're talking about seconds between the time you see the flashlight and the police show up?

ZIMMERMAN: It's a while, but I'm sure it's seconds.

SINGLETON: OK. They put you at gunpoint?

ZIMMERMAN: I don't know. I put my hands on my head and I turned my back to them.

SINGLETON: OK. What were they saying to you, the police?

ZIMMERMAN: He said, who shot him? I said, I did.

SINGLETON: You said you did this?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am. I said, I have my gun on my right side in my holster in my waistband. He said, I know you do. He says, but I have to handcuff you first. And I said, I'm not going for any firearm. He put my arms out.

SINGLETON: Where did they take you?


SINGLETON: They put you right in the police car?

ZIMMERMAN: Ambulance, put peroxide on my head. They put it on my face to get the blood off. SINGLETON: OK. Anything else I haven't asked you or you haven't said that's --


SINGLETON: OK. You said you're in charge of the neighborhood watch.

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: OK. You weren't doing it that night or you were just (INAUDIBLE)?


SINGLETON: Driving out and you happen to see this kid and you want to check it out with him?


SINGLETON: OK. You did the right thing. You called the police.

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: Have them check it out. You just noticed it. OK. Is that normally what you do when you see something suspicious? You just call?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: You don't try to make contact with them at all?




DE LA RIONDA: During that interview, there was an indication that he was drawing something. Is that correct?

SINGLETON: Yes. There have a pad in there and he attempted to draw the location.

DE LA RIONDA: Subsequent to that, you used a Google Map to get him to draw that to demonstrate what happened?

SINGLETON: Yes. It wasn't clear to me and I was confused as to where it happened and how the neighborhood was set up. So I went and got a print out of the Google Map of the entire neighborhood and had him show me exactly what he was talking about using the map.


SINGLETON: This is February 26, 2012. Again, I'm with George Zimmerman in his interview with the police department.

You still have the right to remain silent. (INAUDIBLE) Just want to ask you a few more questions.

This is the neighborhood.


DE LA RIONDA: This is where you've gotten the Google Map?


DE LA RIONDA: Tell us how you got that. Everybody knows about Google. You actually went on the computer?

SINGLETON: I went on Google and typed the street. When it showed it, I printed the page.

DE LA RIONDA: Did you actually use that to have him draw what's going on?

SINGLETON: Yes. As he could tell me, I would have him make markings on the map with a pen to show locations he's referring to.


SINGLETON: -- we're talking about, right?


SINGLETON: Can you put an X on here where you first saw the guy.

ZIMMERMAN: Right about here.

SINGLETON: Right about there. This is the entrance, correct?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: Like that. This is where you first saw it. Then you're drawing. Where were you when you saw him?

ZIMMERMAN: I was driving around here.

SINGLETON: This is where your car was. Can you just write "car" right there? Then you saw him here?


SINGLETON: And then where did you go from there? When do you start calling the police? Where are you?

ZIMMERMAN: I pulled in front of the clubhouse.

SINGLETON: Did you pass him?


SINGLETON: He was here and you passed him?


SINGLETON: Put an X there that's where. Put "911" because that's where you were when you called 911.

ZIMMERMAN: It was the non-emergency number.

SINGLETON: That's where you called the police?


SINGLETON: Then he's behind you. He's still over here. You pass him.


SINGLETON: This is where you still have him. Where do you go when you realize -- you said he comes and circles your car?

ZIMMERMAN: No. I lost contact of him as I was trying to get through --


SINGLETON: Does he continue past you?


SINGLETON: He continues past you and you lose sight of him over here?


SINGLETON: Just draw an arrow where he continues to pass.

ZIMMERMAN: Passes me through here. He goes here.

SINGLETON: He goes somewhere here, where you can't see him?


SINGLETON: Go to where you think he might have been to where you lose sight of him.

ZIMMERMAN: He started going here and behind this house.

SINGLETON: You could see that from here?


SINGLETON: When he gets behind the house you lose sight?


SINGLETON: At some point, he comes back and circles the car. Has he done that?

ZIMMERMAN: He looked into my vehicle but he didn't circle it at that point.

SINGLETON: When does he -- you're still on the car talking to 911.

ZIMMERMAN: I'm trying to get through.

SINGLETON: At some point, you say he tries to come back.


SINGLETON: So you're sitting here and he returns?

ZIMMERMAN: I drive my car up here.

SINGLETON: To move your vehicle up to there.

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am. Right here.

SINGLETON: Draw where you are.

ZIMMERMAN: To there. That's where I parked.

SINGLETON: That's where you parked. OK. You park here, and then is that when he comes and circles your car?

ZIMMERMAN: It might have been closer between here, these houses.

SINGLETON: You can move it. Just move it. Right around there.

Right around here. We're going to X that. You came around here and ended up here?


SINGLETON: You ended up here. And is this when he circles your car?


SINGLETON: He comes up from where?

ZIMMERMAN: I don't know.

SINGLETON: You just notice he's circling your car?


SINGLETON: You're still on the phone?


SINGLETON: Are you giving them a description?


SINGLETON: Where does he go when you lose sight of him?

ZIMMERMAN: He walks back into the darkness. SINGLETON: He walks back in here. Does he make the turn? Does he go -- by the time he gets here, you can't see him?


SINGLETON: You're still in your car?


SINGLETON: You're watching him walk away?

ZIMMERMAN: Yes, ma'am.

SINGLETON: OK. And then what happens?

ZIMMERMAN: The dispatcher asked me what direction he went on and exactly what address I was at --