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George Zimmerman Trial
Aired July 2, 2013 - 21:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
MARK EIGLARSH, GUEST HOST (voice-over): Tonight, more fireworks in the Zimmerman trial. Profiling takes center stage. But is there a difference between criminal profiling and racial profiling?
Plus, Zimmerman`s best friend and vocal supporter with a no holds barred view of the trial.
FRANK TAAFFE, GEORGE ZIMMERMAN`S BEST FRIEND: I think the operative word for this panel is decaf.
EIGLARSH: And she was the star witness for the prosecution.
RACHEL JEANTEL, WITNESS: I don`t understand you. I do understand English.
EIGLARSH: Now her friend joins the behavior bureau to speak out in her defense.
It`s time for DR. DREW ON CALL.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
EIGLARSH: Good evening, everyone. I`m Mark Eiglarsh, sitting in tonight for my buddy, Dr. Drew.
I`m joined by my lovely and very intelligence co-host, Samantha Schacher, host of "Pop Trigger" on the Young Turks Network.
Today, another explosive day in the Zimmerman trial. I couldn`t leave my room. I was glued.
We`re going to cover it all from the murder trial inside the courtroom to the heated debate that we had right here on this show. Now, in a moment we`ve got some unfinished business from last night.
But, first, the issue that`s on all of our minds is, can the state prove its case? Watch this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He told me that as he was walking back to his car down the dog path that Trayvon had confronted him. He said, do you -- do you have a problem? And then he used a curse word.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: These jurors have heard. Just for the record --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He said, "Do you have a problem mother (EXPLETIVE DELETED)?"
GEORGE ZIMMERMAN, MURDER DEFENDANT: He said, "You`re going to die tonight mother (EXPLETIVE DELETED)." He put his hand on his nose and my nose and the other hand on my mouth. He said, "Shut the (EXPLETIVE DELETED) up."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you read any comics?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Comics.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Comics. No?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I have a little caption like with a little bubble. Kind of what the person`s thinking. At the time he got out of the car, was getting out of the car, the defendant said the words these (EXPLETIVE DELETED) punks -- pardon my language -- right?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And then he followed Trayvon Martin, correct?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And I`m hitting you, correct? That`s what the defendant is claiming. That I`m suffocating you. Would you have your hands like that, just like this? Or would you have your hands like that like this? Or would you be fighting me?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I`d be fighting you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You find any blood or anything on the defendant`s hands?
JUDGE: No, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Well, you have five minutes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I will take it.
JUDGE: For your re-re-cross.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: As far as any blood on Mr. Zimmerman`s hands, of course when he got to you he was cleaned up by EMTs and he had washed himself at, correct?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, sir.
EIGLARSH: What a day in court.
On the panel tonight: Crystal Wright from conservativeblackchick.com. Welcome back. Michael Skolnik, also, editor in chief of GlobalGrind.com. He`s also on the board of the Trayvon Martin Foundation. And George Zimmerman`s slightly controversial friend, Frank Taaffe. And social commentator, Ms. Ali.
They`re all back with us tonight.
Now, Ms. Ali, apparently, by the way, your book is called "How Not to Eat Pork or Life Without the Pig." There`s your plug for you.
All right. So, before we get started, everybody listen to me, OK? There are some ground rules, OK? No yelling. Everyone`s going to get their turn. And if you do not abide by your rules, I will cut off your mic tonight. And I`ve enclosed a trap door also.
SAMANTHA SCHACHER, CO-HOST: Oh.
EIGLARSH: Let`s talk about unfinished business from last night. OK? First, let`s listen to a clip from last night`s show.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TAAFE: Let`s try to put this all into context and deal with this as calmly as possible and look at the facts and evidence that have been presented to the jury.
Ms. Ali, I like what you had to say because Trayvon was a black man. He wasn`t a young child, as originally portrayed in the media when this first happened.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
EIGLARSH: Ms. Ali, you weren`t a part of that segment, but I know you`ve got a lot to say. You`ve asked to respond.
Go ahead. The floor is yours.
SHAHRAZAD ALI, SOCIAL COMMENTATOR: Well, I first want to tell Mr. Frank that I think he kind of misconstrued what I was referring to. Trayvon was a teenager. He was just a child. I have a 13-year-old and in three years he`s not going to be a man. He`s still going to be a child.
So, you know, that`s a misconception on your part. That`s not what I said. You don`t have to thank me for that. That isn`t true.
Also you can`t join the military in this country at the age of 17. You`re not considered a man yet. You have to have your parents sign.
There`s a lot you can`t do at the age of 17. So you --
TAAFFE: But you can do it. The operative word is can do. Thank you.
ALI: I`m glad that you`re on this show.
TAAFFE: You can do it with your parents` signature. That`s a fact. Let`s move past that.
EIGLARSH: Go ahead, Frank.
TAAFFE: I was complimenting you. You`re the only one that kept it real. You said he`s a man, a 6-foot, 160 pounds.
ALI: Well, I`m the only one who know who you are.
TAAFFE: Well, you know who I am. That`s good. I`m glad you do. Here you go.
ALI: I have identified you.
TAAFFE: He`s 6 foot.
EIGLARSH: Frank, can I ask you something? One question. I mean no disrespect at all.
But as an advocate for Zimmerman, do you think that somehow if you kind of cut out some of your colorful rhetoric that you might be doing him a greater service?
TAAFFE: You know, Mark, I`m here to present the facts and the truth. And you guys want to go in another direction. I`m just portraying the truth and the facts in this case.
TAAFFE: You know, your other guests -- last night I was called a crack head. And you know what? I wasn`t allowed to retort to that. Because and I wish that was rescinded from last night too. I didn`t help you out (ph) to retort to that.
CRYSTAL WRIGHT, CONSERVATIVEBLACKCHICK.COM: Frank, can I --
EIGLARSH: I`m going to let Crystal get in here.
WRIGHT: Frank is exactly right.
But, Mark, you just said that Frank should, like, mitigate and reduce his colorful language, but you didn`t tell Ms. Ali to reduce her colorful language about the case --
TAAFFE: Thank you.
WRIGHT: -- and her bias.
TAAFFE: Thank you very much.
WRIGHT: And Frank has a right, just like I have a right to talk about --
ALI: I don`t have bias.
WRIGHT: Excuse me. Just like everybody has a right to an opinion.
And we know that everybody wants to make this racially charged. So I think you need to apply the same rules to everybody.
EIGLARSH: Michael, go ahead.
MICHAEL SKOLNIK, GLOBALGRIND.COM: Yes, I think this is not about Frank Taaffe or Ms. Ali. George Zimmerman is the one who`s on trial. A lot happened in the courthouse today. Let`s talk about that.
You guys can fight off screen or on your own time. Today was a great day for the prosecution. A great day.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It was.
EIGLARSH: Well, let`s talk about that. I want to get some --
ALI: And I`m not biased.
EIGLARSH: Hold on one second.
Samantha, go ahead.
SCHACHER: I really quickly want to speak the facts here. We`re saying that the media and that we`re talking about whether or not Trayvon Martin is being portrayed as a kid, a teenager, or an adult. George Zimmerman himself told the dispatcher, described Trayvon Martin as a teenager. Just speaking facts.
EIGLARSH: Michael, what do you think the biggest moment today for the prosecution was? Let`s start there.
SKOLNIK: Yes. I think detective Serino saying that George Zimmerman profiled him and there was ill will and spite. That`s going to prove a second degree murder charge. That`s a huge moment for the prosecution and he was following him.
EIGLARSH: Well, let me ask you this, Ms. Ali. Let`s throw out that word profile. If you have a neighborhood watchman, do you want that neighborhood watchman to profile?
ALI: Well, I want him to check the community. And first of all I want him to have self-control. I want him to follow the instructions if he speaks to an officer, a real police and not him playing police.
And I want him to be able to use the type of intelligence that would protect himself and the community by reporting it as he initially did.
I don`t want no fool out there running around in my community with a gun shooting children.
TAAFFE: Excuse me. Can I answer that please?
Joe Zimmerman --
EIGLARSH: Frank, go ahead.
TAAFFE: Mark, yes, I can lay off the colorful comments also. But here`s a fact.
EIGLARSH: You can do whatever you want, Frank. Go ahead.
TAAFFE: OK. I`ll let it loose, man. Hey. You know what? George had a concealed weapons permit. And you`re an attorney, an officer of court in the state of Florida. You know what that mandates. OK? Background checks, et cetera.
He had every right to carry that gun. OK? Whether -- he had a concealed weapons permit. It was not legal --
ALI: That is not true.
EIGLARSH: Hold on one second. Ms. Ali, and then, Crystal.
What`s not true, Ms. Ali?
ALI: That is not true. What we`re dealing with now about the gun laws in this country is that people are able to get guns --
TAAFFE: We`re talking about Florida, Ms. Ali.
EIGLARSH: Go ahead, Ms. Ali.
ALI: It`s not that everybody does. That`s what I`m saying. There`s a lot of people out here with guns that don`t have a license.
WRIGHT: Can question get back to -- I`m going to agree with Michael. Are you listening?
I think today the prosecution had a great day. Two things: the chief medical examiner saying that George Zimmerman`s injuries were insignificant and not life threatening made everybody including America question whether or not George Zimmerman`s life was actually threatened, by Trayvon.
And another thing --
EIGLARSH: Well, Crystal, let me --
WRIGHT: Wait --
EIGLARSH: Go ahead but I want to address that issue.
WRIGHT: Just real quick. Chris Serino actually said that he wanted to -- he told George Zimmerman the entire thing had been taped, right, the entire encounter, him shooting Trayvon. And Chris Serino said that Zimmerman was somewhat elated by this.
That was disturbing. Along with a lot of other things we`ll get to.
EIGLARSH: We`re going to carry this over, but the question I want to ask the panel is, do you have to have serious injury or do you just have to reasonably fear serious injuries or death? We`re going to have that discussion when we come back.
But also, if George Zimmerman was, in fact, profiling Trayvon Martin the night he was shot and killed, is there a difference between criminal and racial profiling?
And later, she was the star witness for the prosecution. And now, Rachel Jeantel`s friend joins the behavior bureau to speak out in her defense.
Back after this.
MARK O`MARA, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: He said following him is not legally improper, correct?
CHRIS SERINO, WITNESS: It`s not illegal.
O`MARA: Tell me what crime you believe would occur if I were to walk up to you on the street and say "hi"?
SERINO: In that manner, none whatsoever.
O`MARA: How about, "What are you doing here?"
SERINO: None whatsoever.
O`MARA: How about, "Get the hell out of here"?
SERINO: None whatsoever.
O`MARA: How about, "I don`t like the way you`re dressed. I don`t like the fact you have gray on. Get out of my face"?
SERINO: Not illegal.
O`MARA: Is that a crime?
SERINO: No, sir.
BERNIE DE LA RIONDA, PROSECUTOR: Are you saying it is against the law for a person to wear a hoodie at night?
SERINO: No, sir.
DE LA RIONDA: If I were to believe somebody was committing a crime, could that be profiling?
SERINO: It could be construed as such, yes.
EIGLARSH: Another huge moment in the trial today.
I`m back with my co-host Samantha Schacher. My panel`s back to me.
And, listen, right before we went to break, I brought up the issue about whether it`s needed that there must be serious bodily injury to have taken place or is it enough under Florida law, as I believe that it is, to fear reasonably serious bodily injury?
So, I ask you, Michael, what`s your response?
SKOLNIK: I think Mark O`Mara, as I praised him yesterday, I think he did an awful job today. I think he asked a question that was just an awful question to say, could the next punch be lethal? That`s like saying any fight it could be lethal. You cannot shoot someone if you think you`re going to die with a third, fourth, fifth punch that never happened.
EIGLARSH: Frank, what do you want to say?
TAAFFE: Mark, I read the statute too. It`s 776.13. You can look it up. I`m sure you know it. You`re well-versed. You`re a criminal good attorney.
It says to prevent imminent death or in the commission of a forcible felony or reasonably believe. That`s the law. That`s the law. We`re not going to bend profile or anything else.
SKOLNIK: You have minimal injuries -- you think you have --
TAAFFE: Michael, put yourself in that spot. It`s dark, it`s rainy --
SKOLNIK: I`ve been in that spot. I`ve been in a fight.
TAAFFE: I live there, man. I know what it`s like. I know how the concrete feels. How about --
ALI: Well, let`s put ourself -- let`s put ourself in Zimmerman`s position.
EIGLARSH: Go ahead, Ms. Ali.
ALI: He`s already been shown to lie under certain circumstances because he lied about that money him and his wife collected. He got busted in that.
But also, every person that`s in the legal industry knows that if some time a perpetrator is in the back seat, he will hit his head on the window to make it look like police brutality. If a woman is mad at her husband or mad at her boyfriends, sometimes she`ll beat herself in the face and call the police and blame him.
So, we don`t know how Zimmerman got those marks on his face or head.
TAAFFE: That`s what the state have to prove. That`s the elephant in the room.
WRIGHT: We do know --
EIGHLARSH: Let me ask you this. Stop, guys.
WRIGHT: OK. We do know what happened. There was a scuffle. And Trayvon --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Scuffle?
WRIGHT: Well, not a scuffle. There was a fight. There was something that happened. And because it was the two of them, I believe like the medical examiner said that Trayvon punched him.
But I think today`s testimony from the medical examiner and Chris Serino, but particularly the medical examiner really blew holes in this argument the defense has that Zimmerman said he was punched more than two dozen times by Trayvon. It`s just --
EIGLARSH: Hold on.
WRIGHT: There`s reasonable doubt.
ALI: That didn`t happen.
EIGLARSH: Crystal, here`s the question --
WRIGHT: Come on. I think what`s interesting is Ms. Ali doesn`t want the facts to present themselves. And at the end of the day while --
ALI: No, what I don`t want is for you to keep butting in while I talk.
WRIGHT: While this was a good day for the prosecution. The defense created lots of reasonable doubt. That`s what it`s going to boil down to.
EIGLARSH: Crystal, I have a follow-up question for you. If it`s your loved one on the ground and I don`t know what the facts are, but let`s just assumed for a second that Jonathan Good`s testimony is credited by the jury. If it`s your loved one on the ground and let`s say they`ve been punched in the nose and their head`s been hit on the concrete once or twice which is the minimal amount that the medical examiner gave.
EIGLARSH: Isn`t that enough to them? No?
WRIGHT: No. I think today there was a lot of question as to whether or not George Zimmerman`s life was threatened. And as far as "Stand Your Ground", he told Sean Hannity in that interview where he looked like he had memorized the story.
Now that I saw that tape, I think that there`s something -- when you look at all of the interviews with George Zimmerman, it seems like a lot of memorization. He`s almost robotic. Then, he tells Sean Hannity he didn`t even know about Florida`s "Stand Your Ground" law? Come on. That was not plausible, guys. Not plausible.
SCHACHER: Mark, can I say something? Listen. Let`s try to give George Zimmerman the benefit of the doubt. Let`s say in that fight, even though we learn today that`s an injury sustained, were not life threatening.
But let`s say that George Zimmerman believed that they were. Listen. He should not have gotten out of his vehicle in the first place.
EIGLARSH: Thank you.
SCHACHER: And the fact he got out of his car -- I don`t buy the fact really quickly.
TAAFFE: Come on.
SCHACHER: I`ve tried to put myself in George Zimmerman`s shoes. I cannot buy the fact that he states he got out of the car to look at a street sign when he`s lived in that neighborhood for years. There`s only three streets in that neighborhood, Frank. You know. And it`s the main street that goes in and out of the main gate.
TAAFFE: I didn`t even know the name. I didn`t know the name of the street.
SCHACHER: Come on.
TAAFFE: I didn`t know the name of the street.
SCHACHER: Really? It`s the main street that goes in and out of the gate.
TAAFFE: I bible it. I bible it.
EIGLARSH: Michael, here`s the question. I have a question for you, Michael --
TAAFFE: Let me go back to the original point here. You know, the use of deadly force is justified in the commission of a forcible felony. That`s the statute. And that`s what`s going to be read to the jury that they`re going to take back the jury box with the evidence and the facts.
Now aggravated battery -- Mark, you know this -- aggravated -- ag bat is a forcible felony. Just like rape. Does a woman who`s being raped have to be penetrated before it`s justified she`d kill the rapist? Think about that.
WRIGHT: Come on, Frank. Don`t bring a woman being raped.
SKOLNIK: Frank, today, your buddy had holes just blown through the water today.
TAAFFE: No, he didn`t. Serino just --
SKOLNIK: If he walked to the end of the block to his street, why didn`t he tell the police at that point an address?
TAAFFE: He couldn`t see it. It was right --
SKOLNIK: It was on his street.
TAAFFE: He didn`t have x-ray vision like Superman.
SKOLNIK: We saw a photo of the house, and there was an address in the light of the house.
TAAFFE: It was obstructed. If that light -- listen. On the direct testimony, she could not say if that light was on. If that light in front of that house is not illuminated. You can`t see the letters in the black of night.
WRIGHT: I want to ask Frank a question. Can I ask Frank a question?
SKOLNIK: We don`t believe it, Frank. We do --
EIGLARSH: Let me go with Crystal. Then we go to Ms. Ali. Go ahead, Crystal.
WRIGHT: Frank, I want to ask you a question. Neighborhood watch as far as I can remember when I was a kid and there was a neighborhood watch - -
TAAFFE: We`re the eyes and ears of the community.
WRIGHT: Wait a minute. Supposed -- can I speak, please, Frank?
The association actually says that a neighborhood watch person is never supposed to carry a gun or follow. They`re supposed to be the eyes and ears to the police and call the police if they see something.
So I`m asking you do you think it`s OK for George Zimmerman he was the neighborhood watch, he was driving around looking for stuff. Why was it OK, Frank, for him to act against what the police coordinator told him not to do? Eyes, ears.
EIGLARSH: Ten seconds, Frank.
TAAFFE: That`s a compound question. Here you go -- George Zimmerman had the legal right to carry that weapon.
WRIGHT: I`m not talking about that.
TAAFFE: Number one.
WRIGHT: That`s not what I asked you.
TAAFFE: You just asked me -- he can carry it anywhere he wants. He had a legal permit.
Number two, he was the eyes and ears of neighborhood watch. And the dispatcher who`s not law enforcement said just tell us if he`s doing anything else. It`s in there. Listen.
EIGLARSH: Frank, thank you. And thank you to the rest of the panel. We have a lot more this hour to talk.
We`ve got fresh insight into the state`s intriguing and controversial star witness from her friend. We`re going to hear from her. She also went to high school with her.
And later, my legal dream team is back for another installment of Dr. Drew`s trial report card. You don`t want to miss that.
REPORTER: You can see it from the moment she takes the stand. Rachel Jeantel is not comfortable in the spotlight.
DON WEST, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: You don`t think that creepy ass cracker is a racial comment?
DR. DREW PINSKY, HLN HOST: A young girl who`s now in the middle of a storm.
JEANTEL: Why are you following me, yes. You correct. You right. You can go. You can go.
NANCY GRACE, HLN HOST: Even though she was horrible on cross exam, it was just -- it hurt. My teeth hurt.
WEST: Did someone talk with you last night about your demeanor in court yesterday?
JEANTEL: No. I went to sleep.
TAAFFE: She created so much doubt in that jury`s mind. She was precious. Those are the words I can use. She was just precious for the defense.
EIGLARSH: Of all the words in the English language, he uses precious.
WEST: Are you claiming in any way that you don`t understand English?
JEANTEL: I don`t understand you.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Look, Nancy. If this is the state`s star witness, she`s a falling star.
EIGLARSH: It`s time for the behavior bureau. I`m back with my co- host Samantha Schacher.
Joining us is clinical and forensic psychologist, Cheryl Arutt, HLN contributor and psychotherapist Tiffanie Davis Henry, and criminal investigator Danine Manette, author of "Ultimate Betrayal".
And on the phone, a very special guest. I`ve been looking forward to hearing from her all the day, Debra Fakanlu. She`s a former classmate of Jeantel`s.
Debra, there`s been a lot of controversy about this witness. And the reason why we`re spending a lot of time with her in the behavior bureau, is because especially after today`s testimony, she is such a critical witness, potentially to show that Zimmerman was the aggressor.
Now, what is your reaction to all the negative comments and criticism surrounding Rachel?
DEBRA FAKANLU, FRIEND OF RACHEL JEANTEL (via telephone): I feel like it`s a lot for her and she`s doing her best. And I don`t think they should give her a hard time.
EIGLARSH: Is she somebody that we can believe? Because people thought that her demeanor suggested either truth or lie. There was not really much in between.
FAKANLU: I feel like she`s very believable. She`s very consistent in everything she says.
EIGLARSH: OK. And do you think she performed well on the stand? Kind of how she is in real life? Tell us.
FAKANLU: Yes. She performed well in my opinion.
EIGLARSH: OK. Is there anything else you wanted to tell us about her?
FAKANLU: She`s a very nice girl. She`s very caring. And I don`t feel like she`s rude.
EIGLARSH: All right. Well, we appreciate your insight.
What`s very important really, behavior bureau, all women by the way. We`re back to how Drew usually has it. I feel like I`m in the sorority party. Thank you for having me.
But what`s really critical is how the all-women jury will receive this woman, especially after today`s testimony. I kind of want to know how you guys feel about her.
You know, Rachel`s highly criticized appearance kind of really is critical, critical for this prosecution. Right?
I mean, Samantha, you with me?
SCHACHER: I said it once and I`ll say it again. Just because someone`s demeanor and dialect is different than your own doesn`t mean that they`re not credible. We need to be emphatic and I thought that she was real and raw and honest. I believed her.
EIGLARSH: OK. You know, this just came in. She changed the wallpaper on her Twitter to read the following. Ready for this one?
EIGLARSH: "Don`t like me? Have a seat with the rest of the B-words. Waiting for me to give a F-word."
Danine, what does this tell us?
DANINE MANETTE, CRIMINAL INVESTIGATOR: No good deed goes unpunished - -
EIGLARSH: Expert on D-words and F-words, Danine. Yes.
MANETTE: No good deed goes unpunished. This is why people don`t want to get involved in criminal cases, because you are just completely torn apart. Your life is torn apart. She didn`t come into this courtroom because she was in a beauty contest or because she was in a job interview. She came because she was the last person to speak to Trayvon alive.
And we basically need to -- or the jurors need to take her statement and determine the truth and veracity of the statement itself. And use her in order to determine what happened or what they feel happened in this case. I mean, people -- a man will rescue three women who have been kidnapped and we have to hear about why he fought with his wife. It is a shame, because this is why people don`t get involved in the justice system and the wheels of justice are grinded to a halt because of all this external stuff that comes into play and destroys people`s lives who step forward and get involved.
EIGLARSH: Tiffanie, you`ve got five white women, one Hispanic, no blacks on that jury. Do they get her?
TIFFANIE DAVIS HENRY, PH.D., PSYCHOTHERAPIST: You know what? I would hope they would get her at least as a woman. One of the things the defense did that was a disservice to them and this is my opinion, they talked down to her. They talked to her as if she was not smart. And no woman wants to see another woman talked like that especially a white male talking to a black female.
But I do want to go back to her tweet, because this girl is 19. She is being criticized by people who do not know her. And she can do one of two things. She can crawl up into a corner in a little ball and just internalize all the things she`s hearing or she can say you know what? Screw you guys.
I am who I am. Leave me alone. If you don`t like me, that`s your problem. And as a therapist, that`s exactly what I would tell her to do.
EIGLARSH: Cheryl, let me ask you. Did she resonate with you? Can you believe what she`s saying and then base a verdict on it? As Zimmerman was the aggressor, essentially?
ARUTT: You know what, Mark? I think we need to remember that this is a young woman who was grieving, who is absolutely filled with survivor guilt because she felt like she had somehow failed him. And, she was not there seeking fame. She was not a legally sophisticated witness.
But she was somebody who was out there to tell the truth and try to do the right thing. And I think what she put up on her Facebook page in her own way was an attempt to say, hey, you know, back off. I`m going to try to get some power back and say I`m not going to succumb to people taking all of these hits at me.
She was trying to do the right thing. And I think that race and culture are so important here. And it`s so important for people with White faces to be saying this and acknowledging this, because in White culture, very often, people are taught that just noticing race is racist and believe falsely, I think, that being color blind is being non-racist. We actually need to value difference. And that means acknowledging the impact of race.
EIGLARSH: All right. Tiffanie, I`m going to get you on the other side. We all want to hear what you have to say. But next, we`ve got some good stuff coming up. George Zimmerman, you know, he alleges that he shot Trayvon Martin in self-defense. Who is the aggressor in this case? We`re going to have the behavior bureau weigh in when we come back.
And also, later, what the jury never should have heard but did. That`s right after this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: There`s been a few times where I`ve seen a suspicious person in the neighborhood.
FRANK TAAFEE, ZIMMERMAN FRIEND AND SUPPORTER: I think he had a call of duty for the neighborhood. And I think he was not going to let another burglary go down on his watch.
He had a concealed weapons permit. It was self-defense. Self- defense.
I wonder who the aggressor was. I wonder who had the injuries. He became the aggressor, the thug that he was. He went MMA style on top of George. And he started pounding George`s head.
DR. DREW PINSKY, HOST: It seemed like he continued to pursue him. That`s how he got himself into trouble.
TAAFEE: How do we know that? How do you know that?
PINSKY: Well, we don`t, for sure. And that`s something --
TAAFEE: Thank you.
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Some mother`s child ended up dead because he was armed with Skittles and some ice tea.
EIGLARSH: So, frank Taaffe called Trayvon a thug? I`m just saying, I`m not judging. I`m back with my co-host, the lovely Samantha Schacher and the behavior bureau. Now, we keep hearing throughout this trial supporters from Trayvon Martin`s camp, you know, say the teen was armed with nothing but Skittles and ice tea, which is a fact. But George Zimmerman, he told the police that Trayvon was the aggressor. Watch this.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I was walking back through to where my car was and he jumped out from the bushes. And he said what the (EXPLETIVE DELETED) is your problem, homie. And, I got my cell phone out to call 911 this time. And I say, "hey, man, I don`t have a problem." And he goes, "now you have a problem." And he punched me in the nose.
At that point, I fell down. I tried to defend myself. He just started punching me in the face. And I started screaming for help. I couldn`t see. I couldn`t breathe.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
EIGLARSH: Blame the victim. It`s nothing new in the criminal justice arena. Danine, let me ask you. How do you think the jury is reacting to the defense`s allegation that Trayvon was the aggressor?
DANINE MANETTE, CRIMINAL INVESTIGATOR: Mark, the two things I think are missing from this case are common sense and empathy. When I was a young teenager, I was walking home from school because we got of school out early unexpectedly. There was a guy in a van that drove by me. He turned around and drove back again, he turned around and drove back a third time. I got really scared and I hid behind a car.
I was shaking like a leaf (ph). He turned around and came back again really, really, slowly and I was scared to death. I`m telling you right now, Mark, I don`t know if he was undercover -- officer. I don`t know if he was the undercover mailman. I didn`t know who this guy was.
But I`m telling you now that had he gotten out of that van and came towards me, I would have picked up whatever I had, a bottle, a brick, a stick, a stone, and I would have tried to kill that man. I would have tried to kill him. And I think that if you`re faced with a fight or flight situation and you don`t know what you`re dealing with, you will go for somebody`s throat and do whatever you can to protect your life.
And I think there are plenty of parents of murdered children or kidnapped children that wished their kids could have fought harder and left the DNA on the ground so that there could have been a trail of evidence to what happened to these kids. I honestly think that this is a situation where he didn`t have any idea and he fought for his life.
SAMANTHA SCHACHER, SOCIAL COMMENTATOR: I agree with Danine.
EIGLARSH: You know, if you listen to what Danine just said, it can arguably apply to both.
MANETTE: Of course.
EIGLARSH: It can apply to Zimmerman, depending on where you are in the facts and Trayvon. What did you want to say?
MANETTE: I didn`t know who that guy was. I would have tried to kill him. I would have tried to kill that man.
HENRY: I totally agree with you.
ARUTT: This is a dangerous situation.
HENRY: I totally agree with you. And I replayed this over and over again in my mind as well. If I were Trayvon, if I were George Zimmerman, what would I have done differently? How would I have reacted? And I think that George -- you know, there were crimes in his neighborhood. He saw someone suspicious. He called the non-emergency. He did those things. And nothing was wrong with that.
He was suspicious of this young man. He got out of his car. That`s the first mistake there. And then, with Trayvon, if he`s walking, minding his own business, walking home, I don`t care that it was raining and that he was walking slow. He wasn`t bothering anybody that we know of. He was walking home.
ARUTT: And he was a teenager.
HENRY: Exactly. And he sees this car -- he sees this guy following him and he`s like, well, wait a minute. If I was in a dark alley or anywhere and I saw a guy following me, what would I do? I would look at my surroundings. I would want to know where I am, what the car looked like, what the guy looked like, so that if something did happen, I could describe it. To George Zimmerman, that might look even more suspicious.
EIGLARSH: Let me pose this idea. Let me pose this idea. Cheryl, we`re always quick to behave in a way where one party`s right and the other party is wrong. Could both parties be right here in this case?
ARUTT: Well, Mark, that`s a good question. Both parties could have genuinely felt threatened once they were face-to-face and George Zimmerman was armed. But George Zimmerman got out of the car and put himself into a situation where he was face-to-face with a kid who was feeling followed and trapped.
ARUTT: And I think that Trayvon was really only guilty of walking while Black.
EIGLARSH: OK. All right, guys. There are so much more to talk about. Stick around. I`ve got a legal dream team -- first of all, thank you, guys. You`re wonderful. The legal dream team is coming up, and they`re going to review the day`s court`s action.
And also, it`s time for Dr. Drew`s report card. We`re going to grade Zimmerman`s interview performance. Back in a moment.
VINNIE POLITAN, HLN ANCHOR: Coming up top of the hour on "HLN After Dark," our bold question tonight for our jury. Did Trayvon Martin reach for the gun the way George Zimmerman described in those recorded interviews?
RYAN SMITH, HLN ANCHOR: Oh, it`s one of the biggest issues in this case. You saw the different stories that came out in court today. Our in- studio jury ready to decide that issue. And this issue could be one that determines the verdict.
POLITAN: Absolutely. And we`ll have a verdict at the end of our program. Top of the hour. "HLN After Dark."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: He said "are you following him?" And I said, "yes, because I was in the area. And he said, "we don`t need you to do that."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Did you think that there was anything wrong with him following him to see where he was going?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Legally speaking, no.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Tell me what crime you believe would occur if I were to walk up to you on the street and say hi.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In that manner, none whatsoever.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How about what are you doing here?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: None whatsoever.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How about get the hell out of here?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: None whatsoever.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: How about, I don`t like the way you`re dressed? I don`t like the fact that you have gray on, get out of my face?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: That could be construed as confrontational.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Sure, but is that --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It`s not illegal.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: -- a crime?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, sir.
EIGLARSH: Welcome back. I`m Mark Eiglarsh sitting in for my buddy, Dr. Drew. My co-host still the lovely, Samantha Schacher. And joining me, we`ve got three of the greatest legal minds on HLN. First, we`ve got Attorney Loni Coombs, author of "You`re Perfect And Other Lies Parents Tell." I don`t tell my kids any lie.
CNN legal analyst and former federal prosecutor, the wonderful, Sunny Hostin, and defense attorney, Darren Kavinoky, host of "Deadly Sins" on Investigative Discovery and the best dresser around.
Darren, in the tape that we just heard, I asked producers to show everybody, it was a huge moment in this trial. The detective says on cross-examination correctly that it is not illegal to follow someone. We`re not talking about the court of public opinion where everybody saying he shouldn`t. It`s not illegal, right? The question that I`m asking you is, legally, does that make him the aggressor, though?
DARREN KAVINOKY, ATTORNEY: I don`t think it does. As long as you`re in a place where you have a legal right to be, just because you might be following somebody doesn`t necessarily make you the aggressor. The aggressor is about the first violent act, that first physical confrontation, not about following.
And by the way, speaking of violent acts, this whole thing, this prosecution`s case, it reminds me of a boxing match where one fighter may be taking a dive. I`m not one to buy into conspiracy theories, but man, oh, man the defense is having some big days in the prosecution`s case.
EIGLARSH: Darren always liberal with the metaphors. Sunny, at what point did Zimmerman`s actions then cross the line to become criminal?
SUNNY HOSTIN, CNN LEGAL ANALYST: Well, I mean, if you believe the prosecution`s narrative, Mark, then he crossed the line when he got out of the car, followed Trayvon Martin, because he profiled him.
EIGLARSH: Wait, wait, wait. Stop there. Stop there, Sunny. Sunny, stop there for one second. He crosses the line, it becomes criminal to get out of your car? The lead detective said that wasn`t the case. Just to follow, get out of the car and follow him?
HOSTIN: You`re mischaracterizing what I just said, though. : You`re mischaracterizing what I just, Mark.
EIGLARSH: And I apologize. Go ahead.
HOSTIN: He crossed the line when he got out of the car by the way contrary to the advice that he was given by the dispatcher, followed Trayvon Martin because he profiled him, and then confronted him. If you look at some of the case law in Florida, you don`t need physical force to be the first aggressor. And so, it`s going to be a factual determination that needs to be made by this jury.
HOSTIN: So, you`ve got to look at the facts altogether. You can`t just say, well, is following illegal, is profiling illegal, is confrontation illegal. When you look at it all together, I submit to you if the jury believes the prosecution`s theory, then yes, that would be enough.
EIGLARSH: All right. Loni, I`ve got 15 seconds. When do you think factually that based on what Sunny said, it`s all factual determination. When do you think factually the jurors will find if at all that it turned into something criminal?
LONI COOMBS, ATTORNEY: You know, I don`t think we know yet. And what`s interesting when you put together all of George Zimmerman`s interviews and what we heard from Rachel, both parties, if you believe these witnesses, have the same thing going on. George said I was fearful. I thought there was a threat, and yet, I got out of my car and walked towards it. Then Trayvon said, according to Rachel, you know, hey, this creepy guy is following me. I don`t like it.
I`m trying to get away from him. And then when he saw him again at some point, Rachel says, he confronted George and said what are you doing here? So, they both saw someone that was a threat and the walked towards it. So, it`s really going to be up to the jury to say where`s the confrontation and who did start it.
EIGLARSH: Hold it right there, Loni. We`ve got to hold you over. We`ve got more to come. Next, it`s time for another installment of Dr. Drew`s trial report card.
And later, what the jury heard that they shouldn`t have.
EIGLARSH: It`s time for the Zimmerman trial report card. Welcome back. Samantha Schacher, she`s still my cohost. We`re going to keep her around a little longer.
SCHACHER: Oh good.
EIGLARSH: Zimmerman did an interview on Fox News last year, and it was played for everyone to watch in court. Watch this.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you regret that you had a gun that night?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you feel you wouldn`t be here for this interview if you didn`t have that gun?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, sir.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You feel you would not be here?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I feel that it was all God`s plan and for me to second guess it or judge it --
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Is there anything you might do differently in retrospect now that time has passed a little bit?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, sir.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
EIGLARSH: All right. We`re going to be grading his performance. Did this interview help or hurt his defense? Now, remember, hold your grade until the end. I want to take it around the horn. We`re tight on time. Very quickly let`s start with you Sunny. What`d you think of this interview?
HOSTIN: This was harmful for the defense. He shows no remorse when asked "would you have done anything differently?" He says "no." Wow, really? There is -- you`re on trial for second-degree murder and there`s a dead kid. I think that doesn`t play well with the jury.
EIGLARSH: Loni, you agree?
COOMBS: Yes. I have to agree. You know, at first, I thought, look, he`s clear, he`s consistent. You can see his demeanor. He`s calm. I was thinking this is pretty good for him. this was a smart move. And then, when he asked those questions, do you have regrets? No. Do you regret the gun? No. Do you regret getting out of your car? No.
Do you wish you could do it over again? It was god`s will. I`m not going to second guess -- I was like, do you have any human compassion? I mean, I just got sick to my stomach. If it was me, I would do anything to take it back, to change it, to bring Trayvon Martin back. And he`s just like, no, you know, I don`t second guess it. That for me, I think, is going to hurt him so much in the eyes of anyone.
EIGLARSH: Darren, would you have had your client there doing this interview?
KAVINOKY: Hell no. That was felony stupid. Softball questions, though. I`m offended by that notion that somehow him taking a life and playing God is God`s will. That`s not working for me. But my bigger problem is why the prosecution chose to play those interview tapes now completely eliminating the need for an opportunity for them to cross- examine Zimmerman on the stand.
And that`s why I think they`re like a boxer taking a dive. This is crazy time. Two scoops of crazy, Mark.
EIGLARSH: No vigorous cross-examination. All right. Let`s get to grades right now. Samantha, letter grade. Go.
SCHACHER: I give it a big old "F," because he failed to show any type of remorse and any type of accountability. Let`s remember that a teenager died here.
EIGLARSH: OK. Loni, what do you think?
COOMBS: Yes. I was giving him a "B" until he got to that area where he said he had no regrets and he wouldn`t redo it. I gave him a "D."
EIGLARSH: Darren, what`s your grade?
KAVINOKY: Yes. I give Zimmerman a "C" for his lukewarm performance. And I give the prosecution a big fat "F" for playing it now. That -- I got stuff to say about this, Mark.
EIGLARSH: All right. And I give him a "B" because, essentially, in a way, he avoided ever having to take the stand. They`re never going to call him now. All right. Thank you, guys. Great grades. Thank you.
Next the defense, they were able to slip in some testimony that the jury should never have heard. And we`re going to play that for you right after we get back from the break.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why suspicious?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It was raining. He was looking into the houses, looking behind, looking at me. He wasn`t walking quickly to get out of the rain.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you think he was telling the truth?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
EIGLARSH: For me, one of the hugest moments yesterday in court was when lead detective Serino who was called by the prosecution says he thinks that Zimmerman was telling the truth. Now, today, the judge tells the jury, hey, you`ve got to disregard that statement. But as they say, you can`t unring a bell. Right, Samantha?
SCHACHER: Yes. It`s still going to resonate in the back of their minds.
EIGLARSH: Yes. How about you, Darren? I mean, picture a big elephant who`s pink on a unicorn with a unicorn on a unicycle. OK. Erase, erase, erase, right?
KAVINOKY: Right. Yes. Completely, mark. You can`t unring the bell. You can`t put the toothpaste back in the tube. There`s plenty of analogies there, but here`s the deal. That very helpful tidbit for the defense came at the end of the day yesterday when the jury could go home and sleep on it and let it percolate and really feel that.
And then, when they`re told today to disregard it, good luck. And by the time we get to the end of the trial, it`s gone. It`s already in there. It`s already in their minds, and you`re not going to be able to wipe it out.
EIGLARSH: Samantha, I`m going to let you speak for all the women in this country because there`s six women on this jury. Are they better able than men to somehow put it out of their minds?
SCHACHER: Honestly, I think we hang onto it more.
SCHACHER: We analyze --
KAVINOKY: Hold on to it more. Yes. Aren`t you married, Mark? Come on. What in the hell are you saying, man?
EIGLARSH: Darren, do you think that somehow the fact that he said he believes him is going to play significant in this case?
KAVINOKY: I do. I actually think that`s an important point, because law enforcement officers come into court with a certain amount of credibility already. They`ve got a halo over their heads, unless, there`s a reason to knock it off.
EIGLARSH: Darren, I`ve got to run. Tight ending here. Thanks to my co-host, Samantha Schacher. We`ll see you next time. "HLN After Dark" starts right now. Good night, everyone.