tv CNN Newsroom CNN July 8, 2013 6:00am-8:01am PDT
emotion from george zimmerman in the courtroom as this week's testimony could see more family on the stand to testify on his behalf. friday, zimmerman was visibly afecked. listening to his uncle explain when he heard those highly scrutinized screams for help on a 911 audiotape. >> i said, that is george. and i stood up and looked at the tv. >> reporter: also zimmerman's mother -- >> do you know whose voice that was screaming in the background? >> yes. >> whose voice is that? >> my son george. >> how are you certain of that? >> because he is my son. >> reporter: a day of duelling testimony, after sybrina fulton told the court what she heard. >> that screaming or yelling, do you recognize that? >> yes. >> and who do you recognize that to be, ma'am? >> trayvon benjamin martin. >> reporter: martin's older
brother also testified the screams were from his brother, but in cross-examination fulton was put on the spot for once telling a reporter he wasn't positive about who was screaming only later to conclude it was trayvon martin. for most of day nine, jurors listened to the medical examiner who did the autopsy on martin. >> i believe he was alive for one to ten minutes after he was shot. >> reporter: but when challenged by the defense, doctor bao admitted he only reached that opinion three weeks earlier. he said he thought martin was alive only one to three minutes after the shooting. defense attorneys also pointed out how bao's team may have mishandled and damaged some evidence. when asked to recall specifics about the autopsy, there was this. >> i do not have any recall. i do not have any memory of the day of autopsy. >> reporter: attorney mark
o'mara asked the judge to acquit his client after the state rested its case. arguing prosecutors have not proven second degree murder. judge debra nelson denied that motion. putting the defense on deck as this trial moves into week three. and we're back live and inside the courtroom. you see george zimmerman there, still unclear whether the jury has entered the room or not, but court will start up here in the next few minutes. wolf, we kno the defense team took the weekend to take depositions with new witnesses. we could hear from several over the next three or four days and we could hear from chris sereno and more family and friends and the forensic pathologist who is considered an expert in that field. >> we don't yet know who the first witness today will be. we'll just have to wait and see who the defense decides to call. >> yeah.
>> we're monitoring. typically that person will walk right in. you know, be sworn in and we'll get the name and find out who will be up first. that has not happened yet. again, it's still unclear, wolf, whether the jury has entered the courtroom yet. we're monitoring and, of course, we'll let you know. >> trayvon martin's parents are inside and george zimmerman are inside and all the attorneys are inside and judge debra nelson is inside, as well. hold on a moment as we await the start of this third week of this trial. let's bring in page pate, a criminal defense attorney and on site at the trial in sanford, florida, legal analyst sunny hostin and civil rights activist and organizer of atlanta's i am trayvon martin rally. attorneys are off aeriering the defense in court. but frank taffy has been offering his own defense outside the trial. here's what taffy said about george's previous classes and
his claim about certain florida laws. >> i've taken courses before in college and it doesn't mean that i could know detail amount to any specifics if i'm in a traumatic situation. i'm not going to remember a, b, c and d under trauma. big deal he took a self-defense. he took a course about self-defense or standing your ground. it doesn't mean that he detailed out his story to match what he took in the course. >> taaffe also spoke about how deadly force can be justified. listen to this. >> the law specifically says that deadly force is justified in the commission of a forcible felony. in the state of florida, there are certain crimes that are forcible felonies. one is rape and another one is
aggravated stalking and the third is aggravated battery or great bodily harm. and it's defined that if zimmerman's head was being beaten on the concrete and the sidewalk can be used as a weapon because as an extension of the body and a stationary object. and there's case law to prove this. >> as we await the start of this trial on this day, this third week of the trial and there you see george zimmerman inside the courtroom with the others. let's bring in page pate, criminal defense attorney. page, what is the most important thing mark o'mara and his team needs to do today? >> not to lose the case. they have done a good job at poking holes in the state's case. i think we heard even from state witnesses enough reasonable doubt to get the defense past the second degree murder charge. i think that now the real issue is going to be manslaughter. so, the defense team is already,
i think, neutralized. ms. fulton's testimony and having mr. zimmerman's family come in. we recognize that voice as george zimmerman. as long as they don't push it too far, they're doing okay. >> you see the attorneys standing with judge debra nelson. before the official part, the jury part of this trial resumes, sunny, what do you expect we'll see from the defense today? >> well, i think they're going to have to put on their self-defense claims, right? that's what they need to do. we have heard some piece of, some pieces of their defense in the prosecution's case in chief. and george zimmerman, i think, has made about seven statements. so, clearly, they're going to perhaps put more information forward in terms of self-defense. i think they have to do that. and i suspect that's what they're going to do. >> reverend hutchens, you've been watching all of this, as so many millions and millions of
people across the country have been watching this case. what do you make of the way it's being handled by the judge specifically? in other words, are you satisfied with the course of this trial so far? >> well, i think, wolf, it has been certainly a trial that has captivated the nation, particularly those of us in the african-american advocacy community have recognized the value in the job that the judge has done. i have to disagree slightly with my friend page. i don't think they did a adequate job in "neutralizing" the testimony of sybrina fulton. some of the public opinion generated in this case. they have done a better job in public opinion than the court of law. to suggest that trayvon martin's mother whose son is dead could have her testimony neutralized by what the defense did, at least thus far, is a bit of a stretch. >> i think she was suggesting that maybe jorgeorge zimmerman'
mother after trayvon martin's mother testified and they argued the same point that their respebive sons were the ones crying out for help. reverend hutchins you disagree that george zimmerman's mother neutralized the testimony of trayvon martin's mother? >> what you characterized, wolf, as the emotional testimony of trayvon martin's mother because george zimmerman's mother has one major difference with trayvon's mother. mr. zimmerman's mother and her son are alive, trayvon is not. >> what about that, page? what do you make of that argument? >> reverend hutchins is correct, it's not our opinion that counts, the jurors' opinion that counts. but i believe it was effecti effective, and fortunate that the defense was able to call the
witnesses. end of the day on friday, almost immediately after the testimony of zimmerman's family. i think they did the best job they could. >> sunny, you believe trayvon martin's brother was a more efe effective witness than either of the mothers. i think i heard you say that. >> yeah. i mean, you know, certainly, the mother pofs testimony was compelling, but i think there is a certain part of that, that could have been neutralized. you have one mother saying it's my son and another mother saying it's my son. but you don't have a brother getting on the witness stand on the zimmerman side saying i am trayvon martin's brother. i heard his voice on the tape. i think that's most important. not so much what he said, but the way he appeared on the witness stand. he brought trayvon martin to life on the witness stand. he is very eloquent. i've interviewed him. he's a lovely person.
he came across that way on the witness stand. i was in the courtroom. the jurors were really engaged and they were staring at him and i think it sort of goes to counter this perception that may have been in front of this jury that trayvon martin was some sort of thug who beat down george zimmerman, who used racial epithets. well, now you have his brother who he grew up with on the witness stand appear to be the very antithesis of that. >> i want to get into george zimmerman's uncle who also came over and testified and insisted the screaming sound was the sound of george zimmerman, not trayvon martin. everybody stand by, they're still having a sidebar with the judge debra nelson as we await the start of this third week in the trial. we're waiting for the first defense witness of the day to be called. we'll be right back. [ male announcer ] oh, dan, checking out of the doubletree isn't the end.
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we're continuing to stand by. we're awaiting the start of this third week in this george zimmerman murder trial. we're watching what's going on. all the lawyers are meeting with the judge debra nelson right now. what they call a sidebar. the formal proceedings have not started. you'll see this trial unfold and dramatic testimony. we'll soon find out the first
defense witness who will be called today. stand by for that. we'll get back to that trial in a moment. but, other important news we're following in the cnn newsroom, including some shocking information this morning. the pilot of the asiana flight 214 that crashed in san francisco was making his first ever boeing 777 landing at that airport. the south korean airliner says there were three captains and a pilot on the flight, but it was this pilot, new to the aircraft, who was actually in command when it crashed. that pilot had only flown the 777 eight times before. the national transportation safety board is already releasing new video from inside that aircraft. as investigators get set to interview the pilot today. meanwhile, miguel marquez has been reporting. the latest information we're getting from san francisco. >> oh, my. >> reporter: this morning a stunning revelation.
asiana airlines say at the flight of the doomed flight was the co-pilot with only 43 hours of experience in the 777 and never landed a 777 at san francisco before. though he was a veteran pilot with about 10,000 hours of flying time, this was considered a training flight. flight 214 clipping the sea wall, sliding down the runway and pinwheeling at one point almost fully vertical and then erupting into a cloud of dust and smoke. >> i was watching it come in and my initial reaction was that it was trying to divert the landing. >> reporter: the pilot tried to increase speed seven seconds before impact, at four seconds, the 350 ton plane shake stick device jolted violently, a warning the massive jet was going too slowly, stalling. >> i looked out through the window and i knew we were too low. >> reporter: just 1.5 seconds
before slamming into the sea wall, the pilot called to abort the landing. >> there is no discussion of any aircraft anomalies or concerns. >> reporter: these new ntsb photos show seats crushed and jumbled together, amazing so many survived. >> everybody screamed. and most ash, everywhere is ash. >> reporter: some passengers thrown from the plane, suffering road rash from skidding along the runway. >> we got there within three minutes. there were flames coming off the plane. >> reporter: the parents of two teenage girls killed in the crash grief stricken. their daughters headed for summer camp here in california. more than a dozen are still hospitalized. two of them paralyzed, still such a violent crash ends so few injuries and deaths. >> it is nothing short of a miracle that we had literally 123 people walk away from this. >> reporter: a miracle prompting many questions.
>> oh, my god. >> miguel marquez reporting from san francisco. all right, the jury is now back in the courtroom in sanford, florida. there you see george zimmerman on trial second degree murder charge, could face the rest of his life in prison if convicted. judge debra nelson is asking everyone to get ready. we're going to anxiously awaiting to see who the defense calls as the defense's first witness on this day in the third week of the trial. sunny, you know, the burden of proof, as you know, is on the prosecution. the state. but the defense mark omara and his team aren't taking any chances right now? >> i think that's right. the entire case for the defense is self-defense and you have to put something in front of the jury to support that. they were able, i think, to do that in the prosecution's case because the prosecution put in all of george zimmerman's
statements. i believe there are about seven. now, those statements are very inconsistent in many places. so, i think what the prosecution needs to do now is shore that up. whether it be with an expert saying his injuries were actually very significant. perhaps some of his friends to indicate that, you know, he's a good person who didn't train mma style. whatever they need to do to shore up that self-defense claim. i think is what they're going to do. i don't think it's going to be a long case. i don't think it should be a long case, wolf. the burden isn't on the defense and they've done pretty well so far in terms of poking holes. i think page said it in the prosecution's case in chief. so, this should be short if they're playing it strategically right. >> the judge debra nelson now asking the jury making sure they weren't watching tv or on the internet or tweeting or doing anything along those lines. presumably they're all going to
say they did the right thing, they weren't doing any of that. mark o'mara getting ready to call his first witness. let's listen in and see who that first witness is. all right, we just learned the witness name is sandra osterman and we'll find out exactly what the defense thinks sandra can help in this case. she should be walking through those doors momentarily. here she comes right now. sandra will be sworn in by the judge and then mark o'mara a will start asking questions unless don west, his co-counsel decides. >> the testimony here will be the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth so help you god? >> yes. >> i would like to move -- this is not the traditional computer
from this courtroom. if we do not know it, i will need a minute to just use mine. >> the courtroom computer. >> i don't. >> no. this might just take a moment. what i'll do, multi-tasking and i'll begin with her. morning, ma'am. state your name. >> sandra. >> you live here in seminole county? >> yes. >> how long have you lived here? >> 16 years. >> are you married? >> yes. >> who are you married to? >> mark. >> what is his occupation?
>> he is a federal air marshal. >> he has been involved in law enforcement for quite some time? >> yes. >> how long have you been married in. >> almost 17 years. >> you know george and shellie zimmerman? >> yes. >> tell me how you met george. >> i met georgy at a mortgage company called first trust back in 2006. >> okay. and was that a place where you worked together? >> yes. >> what type of work did you do back then? >> mortgage business. >> and was mr. zimmerman doing something similar? >> yes. he was in the sales and i was processing. >> okay. >> did you guys become friends over the time you worked together? >> yes. >> did you maintain that friendship? >> yes. >> and it is that friendship that brings you here today, is that correct? >> yes, it is. >> and i know that you were
present or around during the time that both proceeding the event that brings us here and, of course, right after the event, correct? >> that's correct. >> what i'd like to do, however, today, is just focus your attention on one subject of that and that is the, we are calling the 911 tape, to identify it to you the tape that has a voice in the foreground and turns out her name is mrs. lauer and voice in the background and then what we now know to be the gunshot that killed mr. martin. >> right. >> so, before we get to that. tell me over the past few years how often would you and george zimmerman interact? >> well, we worked with each other every day. and then his wife and i were
best friends and we'd all kind of hang out together. at least every week or so. >> all right. >> have you then had a good opportunity to hear george's voice? >> yes. >> would that be in person? >> yes. >> and over the phone? >> yes. >> if you would tell the jury sort of the range, i mean, would you hear him, not to lead you, but talking, laughing, sort of go through the different types of conversations or voices, if you will, that you heard. >> i would hear him talking and laughing and maybe a little frustrated. >> and would this be sort of over the several years that you've known him? >> right, yes. >> you acknowledge you're a good
friend of his? >> that's correct. >> you guys have helped each other out over the years? >> that's correct. >> certainly you've helped out or helped the family through the initial stages of this event, correct? >> yes. >> then there was a time when you could no longer have contact with him? >> yes. >> because of the case? >> yes. >> still maintain a friendship, though, from afar? >> as far as i'm concerned. >> okay. >> would your friendship with him impact on how you're going to testify today regarding what you may hear on the tape? >> as far as would i lie? >> i guess that's a nonlawyer way to say it. >> i wouldn't lie for him or anybody. >> let me if i might, your honor, play what is already in evidence as exhibit 158. >> you may do so.
>> 911. do you need police or medical? >> maybe both. i'm not sure. >> what is the address that they're near? >> 2023 twin lane. >> is it in sanford? >> yes. >> is it a male or a female? >> sounds like a male. >> you don't know why? >> i don't know why. i think they're yelling help, but i don't know. send someone quick, please. >> does he look hurt to you? >> i can't see him, i don't want to go out there, i don't know what's going on. >> do you think he's yelling help? >> yes. >> what is your -- >> there's gunshots. >> you just heard gunshots? >> yes.
>> how many? >> have you had a chance to listen to that tape before today? >> yes. >> on how many occasions? >> a few. >> okay. do you have, do you know whose voice that is in the background screaming? >> yes, definitely. it's georgy. >> how is it that you know that? >> i just hear, i hear it. i hear him screaming. >> i'm going to leave this here. if they want to replay it, i'll leave it here on this computer if not i'll leave it here for other witnesses. >> we may need it. >> i'm sure he knows better than us. i'll do this.
>> while that is being set up, ms. oeserman, good morning. >> good morning. >> you and your husband wrote a book on the defendant. >> object, your honor. i would like a popular of how that issue -- >> overruled. >> you and your husband, mark osterman wrote a book regarding mr. zimmerman? >> yes. >> okay. and i believe you stated that you and your husband whatever money was made you would donate it to mr. zimmerman, is that
correct? to his cause? >> yes. >> so, you would agree that you have a stake in this, don't you? >> a stake? >> yes, in terms of the book. how many books have been sold as a result of mr. zimmerman being charged with this crime in terms of you all? how many books have you guys sold? >> i have no idea. >> in all the money being made from that book, are you prof profiting or donating the profits to mr. zimmerman? >> we're depositing it into our savings for george after. >> you keep saying george, george zimmerman that we're talking about, the defendant, correct? >> that's correct. >> and i believe you've known mr. zimmerman for how long? >> since 2006. >> and you met him through work? >> that's correct. >> you ended up marrying he and his wife? >> that's correct. >> he is left-handed, correct? >> yes.
>> now, regarding the recording that was played for you, you had heard it two or three times you said, four times? >> a few times. >> did it take you a while to figure out who was actually yelling? >> absolutely not. >> you from the first time you heard it, you knew? >> the very first time i knew it was george. >> why did you have to listen to it more than once? >> because it's played on the news all the time. >> okay. the first time you heard it was on the news? >> yes. >> so on the news it was dealing with this case, george zimmerman, correct? >> yes. >> you are aware that the recording was dealing with george zimmerman? >> yes. >> and that in no way influenced you in raising your opinion that this was george zimmerman on the recording? >> no. >> okay. n
now -- ma'am, listen to this and tell me if you recognize this voice. >> mr. de la rionda, there is an objection. >> what exhibit are you playing? >> 911 nonemergency call that the defendant made. >> i didn't want to tip her off of the recording. >> okay, go ahead. >> i didn't mean to get in the way. >> well, now you know what i'm going to play for you. i was trying to do it, but you
have heard this recording before, correct? >> i don't know. >> okay, let me play it. see if you recognize this. do you recognize that voice? >> yes. >> and who is that voice as saying, pardon -- george zimmerman? >> yes. >> you know in court we're supposed to give -- i apologize. >> do you recognize this?
>> did you recognize that voice? >> yes. >> was that mr. zimmerman, too? >> yes. >> when he uttered the word -- >> oh, i didn't hear that. >> you didn't hear that. i can play it, again, if you want. >> which entrance is that he's heading towards? >> the back entrance. >> do you recognize that voice as being george zimmerman? >> yes. >> now, you had never actually heard the 911 tape other than when you heard it that it was being played by george zimmerman, but you had not heard
the defendant screaming before, had you? >> like that, no. >> thank you very much, ma'am. >> that's okay. so, you heard him say the word, right? >> yes. >> on the tape? >> yes. >> and you heard him talk for years now, correct? >> that's correct. >> did that word, the way he said, did that give you a sense that he was acting with spite or ill will or hatred in that sense? >> no. >> did that seem to just be an off hand way of talking to whoever it was he was talking about? >> yes. >> did you, knowing as you do george's voice throughout the years, did you even hear, by the way, the second time, did you hear him say the expletive that mr. de la rionda repeated? >> no. >> you said generally as the that's george zimmerman's voice.
>> yes. >> even turned up as loud as it could be, you still didn't hear it? >> i still didn't hear it, no. >> everything you heard him say on that tape, was there anything in george's voice that gave you the impression that he was angry or acting with ill will with spite or hatred on that phone call? >> no. >> so, since you've never heard him scream like this before, how are you certain it's his voice? >> i just felt it. i knew that it was him. i just knew it. and i saw the reaction that his wife had and listening to it. i mean, we were all together. it was definitely george. >> but it is your own opinion, separate and apart from everybody else's that the voice just heard was george zimmerman
screaming for help? >> absolutely, yes. >> thank you. nothing further, your honor. >> you were asked about, i'm not going to play it, again, the two clips, correct? >> yes. >> where he uttered -- that he speaks that on a normal basis? >> i'm saying i've heard him say it before. >> so, you're saying when he is following somebody and he's referring to -- invite them out to dinner? >> i don't think i said that, no. >> okay, well you were asked in terms of your impressions whether it was ill will or hatred. somebody talking to somebody else in that manner you think they're saying, hey, come on over and let's talk and let's go out to dinner. >> i don't think he was angry. >> you don't think he was angry? >> not at all. >> you were there that night? >> i was not. only have what you have to listen to. >> so, you're speculating as to how he was feeling based on just
those two terms, correct? >> i guess we both are. >> right? is that correct? >> i guess so, yes. >> what you're saying is when somebody tells the police th that -- he's not upset that in the past people have gotten away and this time they're going to get away. this time mr. trayvon martin is going to get away. you don't take it as that? >> i don't take it as he's angry, no. >> and when somebody as mr. zimmerman did in this case, the defendant -- that's a normal term that he uses? >> may i object, your honor. foundation in that she testified she -- >> so speaking of -- >> proper foundation. >> okay. >> i'll be glad to play it, again, your honor. >> please doso. >> second, well, the second one would be speculation, even if
it's played again. but let him play it again. >> and we can get you some headphones, if you need to. >> also six request in the rule that the entire tape be played. >> go ahead and play the entire tape. >> i'll play her this part and then play the entire tape. i want to focus on this part. >> i have requested a rule of completeness. >> he's going to do it. he said he will do it. >> thank you. >> okay, which entrance is that
that he's heading towards? >> the back entrance. >> okay. did you hear him say, mr. zimmerman, you recognize his voice, correct? >> i do recognize his voice. >> i don't know about that. >> you can tell his voice changes, doesn't it? >> i don't think so. >> do you want me to play it again? >> i heard it three times, i don't think his voice is changing. >> you think his voice is just constant throughout that? >> it seems to be, to me. >> okay. >> all we're asking you is what you believe having heard that. >> i don't hear that, i'm sorry. >> i will play the whole recording.
>> police department. >> there's a real suspicious y guy. the most accurate address i can give you is 111. this guy looks like walking around, looking about. >> okay. this guy can you see what he's wearing? >> a dark hoodie and jeans or sweetpants and white tennis shoes. he's just staring. >> okay, just walking around the
>> come straight in and make a left. actually, go past the clubhouse. >> on the left hand side from the clubhouse? >> straight through the entrance and then you make a left. you go straight in. >> he's down towards the -- >> okay. which entrance is that that he's heading towards? >> the back entrance. >> are you following him? >> yes. >> okay. we don't need you to do that. all right, sir, what is your name? >> george. >> all right, george, what is your last name? >> zimmerman.
>> george, what address are ynu calling from? do you want to meet with them when they get out there? >> yeah. >> where are you going to meet them at? >> i think come in through the gate, go straight past the clubhouse and -- go past the mailboxes. my truck. >> what address are you parked in front of? >> i don't know. i don't know the address. >> do you live in the area? >> yeah. >> what is your apartment number? >> it's a home. 1950 -- i don't want to give it all out. >> do you want to meet with them right there by the mailboxes? >> that's fine. >> all right, george, i'll let
them know to meet you. >> could you have them call me and i'll tell them where i'm at? >> that's no problem. i got it. okay, no problem, i'll let them know to call you when they're in the area. >> thanks. >> you're welcome. >> i believe that was the entire tape. the phone call that he made. do you recognize the defendant's voice? >> yes. >> you were also asked by mr. o' mara in terms of you being positive of the voice you heard on the other call, do you want me to play that again for you? >> no. >> you recognize it as being george zimmerman, is that correct? >> yes. >> in that call when you heard the cries for help, correct? >> yes. >> did you hear any interruption at all? did they interrupt or were they
continuous cries for help? weren't they continuous cries for help? >> yes, appeared to be. >> thank you, ma'am. >> you're welcome. >> any reredirect. >> there is some based upon the new information presented, your honor. now that you've had a chance to listen to the entirety of the phone call, i want to ask you some questions about that, okay? >> okay. >> anywhere on that call, any word, any sentence, any phrase, did you hear anything that, to you, knowing george zimmerman's voice as you do, evidence that he was angry or act aing with ill will? >> no. >> that he was spiteful in his presentation to the law enforcement officer? >> no. >> when he said things like he looks black, did that come across to you as spiteful or
hateful? >> no. >> what about right after -- to the clubhouse. >> yes. >> we're just throwing out curse words like we can. okay? >> okay. evidence to you any ill will or hatred? >> how about the words right afterwards and gave directions to the clubhouse. did he seem exasperated or angry in that? >> no. >> asked him where he's running, he said down towards the back entrance. did that have any anger or hatred? >> no. >> how about when the officer asked are you following him and he said, we don't need you to do
that and george said okay. did you hear any anger in that? >> no. >> could you identify what that wind noise or that sound was during that part of the conversation? >> no, i didn't know. >> when he said, when they were talking about where to meet and mr. zimmerman gave him his telephone number, any anger that you heard in that? >> no. >> when he said the word that he had just given out his telephone number out there in the open, when he said that word crap did it evidence any ill will or anger or hatred to you? >> no. >> how about right after he used that word when he just said, yeah, i'll meet you at the mailboxes and, no, just have him call me. did you hear anything in his voice that gave you an idea he was getting upset or angry at anybody, never mind the person
who may have been him talking about. >> mr. de la rionda asked you if the screams were continuous and you said, you thought so. >> yeah. >> did there seem to be scream, time, scream, time or was it -- which is the alternative. >> rephrase your question. >> may i give an alternative? >> rephrase your question. >> did you hear gaps between the screams, gaps in time between the screams? let me ask it this way. was that one long, continuous scream without any stopping or was it individual screams? >> i don't think it was long and continuous. but there were a lot of cries for help. >> a lot of separate cries? >> objection, leading question.
>> sustained. >> nothing further than, your honor. >> may ms. osterman be excused? >> yes. >> you're excused. >> call mark osterman, your honor. >> so there you see sondra ostermman and we believe her husband will be recalled as the next witness. all this is very significant because in order to convict someone of second degree murder, second degree murder, the prosecution, the state in this particular case, among other things, needs to point out that the murder, the shooting was done from ill will, hatred, spite or evil intent. here you see mark osterman being
sworn in. that's why all the discussion of ill will, hatred or spite. they were trying to show on the one hand the prosecution that he did have ill will, george zimmerman. on the other hand, the defense saying he did not. let's listen in to the testimony of the husband of sondr will. >> do you want to state your name? in this case? i think you acknowledge you are still or under oath as you testified before the jury? >> yes, sir. >> i know we don't go very far into your background. i know it was talked about before, but you are a federal air marshal? >> i am. >> you lived your life within the confines of law enforcement? >> i have. >> you do know george zimmerman, obviously? >> i do. >> i want to focus on a couple subject, first of which is any information you have regarding
mr. zimmerman accomplishing a concealed weapons permit, are you aware of that process? >> i am. >> if you would, tell the jury, what discussions you had with mr. zimmerman in that regard. >> objection. calls for hearsay. >> overruled. >> in reference to the concealed weapons permit, we had talked about him getting a concealed weapons permit, how to go about it. there was a local sports store, i think it was gander mountain, that was putting on a class for the concealed weapons permit and he had seened up for it. him and his wife and they both took the class together, which provided training and actual fingerprinting and elements. >> and did you have discussions with him about gun safety? >> often. we had gone to a shooting rainge on several occasion, probably eight or ten occasions and each
time fire arms safety was at the top of our discussions. >> tell the jury what you mean by firearms safety. >> well, the firearms safety at a range means always being safe and aware of where your firearm is being pointed. making sure it's in a safe condition until you are ready to fire it or if it's not being pointed in a direction that shouldn't be pointed and just making sure that it's handled correctly and george was very safe all the time. >> and that was, in part, based upon your instruction to him? >> that is possible. >> and did you discuss with him the type of weapon to purchase and the purpose for it? >> yes, we did. >> would you explain to the jury about. well, there are many different times of firearms for many different purposes him some are for competition, if you wish to
compete and travel and compete in firearms competition, you would use a certain type of firearm for that, some are for self-defense and those would be a little more exact, a little smaller, able to keep on your person with a concealed weapons permit. some, of course, would be for let's say home defense. they would be a little larger in size, for the ones that you would have for personal defense, those would probably be the ones that i'd recommend to george to get, if he was going to get a concealed weapons permit. the type of firearm we chose was the cal tek 9 millimetre. it was chosen for the reason, it didn't have an exterior safety. when you have an exterior safety on a firearm, sometimes it can be dangerous to the person who owns the firearm. such as if you need to use it in a very stressful situation, sometimes your mind will lock up a bit, will not allow you to think that extra step of pulling
the safety down before you need to use it to defend yourself, so as most law enforcement agencies or all that i'm aware of, they don't have an exterior safety on your firearm, which means there is no extra button to push. the only natural safety that you would have is an extended trigger pull. it means the trigger is not what people sometimes call a hair trigger. it's an extended trigger pull to where it can't be just accidentally squeezed and have the firearm go off. >> all right. so let's take a quick break. we'll resume the coverage, a quick break right now. this is mark osterman described as george zimmerman's best friend testifying on how he initially got that firearm permit. let's continue our coverage right after this. . who out there owning it.
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>> the defense attorney mark o'mara continuing his questioning of mark osterman, george zimmerman's best friend. they're going through the details of the firearms george zimmerman had the permit, how it was used. >> in today's firearms, especially with the cal tek, there is no reason i can think of why you wouldn't after loading a round into the chamber, why you wouldn't add another into the magazine in case you needed that. there is no reason why not to
have that. to leave an extra available round not in your fire. a in your firearm didn't seem to make sense. >> you were with mr. zimmerman when he was at the firing range? >> often. >> what hand does he shoot his firearm with? >> he shoots right handed, i believe. but if i remember correctly, he is left handed when he writes. >> but his firearm shoots with -- first of all, when you hold a firearm, obviously, do you use two hands if you can and, if so, which dominant hand would you use? >> well, the hand that squeezes the trigger would be your dominant hand. i believe he was right-handed when he fired his firearm. so the right hand would be holding the firearm, of course the right index finger is what pulls the trigger. >> if there was evidence and you may not by a ware of it of the
gun being on his right side, what would be the normal process for removing the holster from the firearm to fire it. >> objection, speculation. >> sustained. >> do you know any training which would suggest sort of the cross-body presentation going across one side and brit out rather than going up and out? are you aware of that? >> absolutely. >> objection. >> what's the objection? >> relevance to this case. >> sustained. >> did you have discussions with mr. zimmerman to how and where to maintain his firearm in a 6 concealed way? >> my discussions with him for anything firearm-related like that, what do what is comfortable. do what feels most natural because if a stressful situation is stressed upon you, you can always go back to what feels natural and what you have
trained with. >> sir, is it that important in your discussions with mr. zimmerman that he'd have consistency in how he handles his firearm? >> absolutely. >> can you recall any time where you see mr. zimmerman use his left hand for shooting a firearm? >> yes. >> tell me about. we practiced that. sometimes if you are unable to shoot with your dominant hand or the hand most comfortable with, you shoot with the other hand. sometimes you do it for marksmanship practice and sometimes you do it in case your prominent hand gets injured, your arm gets broken in some kind of event. you may need to use your left hand or alternate hand for that reason. >> that would be used in an aun
alternative method of use of a firearm. >> whichever one gets to the firearm, that's the one you use. >> as you have testified before, you have known mr. zimmerman for how long? >> least five years. >> i believe that your wife had met him first? >> she did. >> through work? >> she did. >> have you had an opportunity then to interact with mr. zimmerman over the past five years? >> often. >> i think you testified that he's your best friend, correct? >> yes. >> have you heard his voice then in different varying situation or experiences? >> i have. >> and just an overview of some of the different types of voice, conversational laughing, whatever it might be as sort of the spectrum of what you have heard mr. zimmerman and his voice sound like? >> quite bit. quite wide in the spectrum. >> can you give us any examples? >> well, the anywhere from the casual conversation to the
hysterical laugh to perhaps shouts over long distance, someone is downrange at the shooting range or someone is at the other side of the store and yelling to each other, but perhaps not what i heard on the 911 tapes. >> let's talk about that, for a machine. if i might display for you a tape of i believe it's 158, am i getting that right? >> yes. >> may i play that exhibit at this point? >> yes. >> i'm going to play an exhibit for you which i think it references the 911 call and ask first that you listen through it throughout, if you need to hear it a second time, let me know. if you need me to go back and listen to a portion, let me know. i will play it straight through one time. >> 911, do you need police, fire, medical? >> really both.
i'm not sure, there is someone screaming outside. >> what's the address? >> 121123 blaine. >> is this in sanford? >> yes. >> is it a male or a female? >> it sounds like a male. >> you don't know why? >> i don't know why. i think they're yelling help but i don't know. >> does he look hurt? >> i can't see him. i don't want to go out there. i don't know what's going on. >> do you think he's yelling help? >> yes. >> what did you -- there's gunshots. >> i'm going to stop it at that point. have you listened to the tape throughout the end of it at any point? >> i have. >> any relevance of the rest of the tape as far as your ability to hear george's voice? >> no, sir. >> let me focus you on what we have heard and tell the jury,
first of all, if you have an opinion, to whose voice that is in the background and by that, i mean, not who we now know miss louder talking to the 911 operator, but the screaming or the noise in the background, do you have an opinion whose voice that is? >> i thought it was george. >> can you tell me why you think that? >> just the tone. just that the volume and the tone of what i was hearing was something that, because i talk to him probably as much on the phone or had before this incident as i did in person. so hearing his voice over a recording is something that your stone a little different. it just sounds a little different over a phone. it just sound like george. >> if i may have a moment, your honor. >> yes, you may. >> another question or two, just
concerning the decision regarding the cal tek. can you explain to the jury your understanding of double action vs. single action guns? >> of course. a firearm that has double action requires the trigger in the hammer to do two separate things, two separate motions. one is as you are squeezing the trigger, the hammer was in front. was forward it has to come back. that's the one action. then it comes forward and it fires the firing pin, which sets off the firearm. single action would mean the firearm, the hammer mechanism is back and one, as you squeeze the trigger, it does one action, which is single. now, there are some automatic handguns that are single action or i'm sorry double action only to where internally the hammer is internal, so you really can't see the hammer coming back. but both functions are back in a double action capacity with
those handguns. >> is the cal tek 9 the firearm where it can only be double action? >> correct. it makes the extra trirg squeeze harder. it's more of a firm squeeze, making it less likely to go off by accident. >> is that one of the safety features of that gun? >> it's its greatest safety feature. >> thank you. no further questions. >> thank you chgs you may cross. >> good morning, mr. osterman. >> good morning. >> i think we briefly talked about a book you wrote with your wife, right? >> yes. >> all the proceeds are going on behalf of george zimmerman, is that correct? >> that is correct. >> how many books have been sold so far? >> i'm not sure,tate publishing would know best. they would give us the best number. >> whatever money has been obtained so far, you are setting aside for the defendant, george zimmerman? >> correct. >> you were asked i guess at the very end about the knowledge of
the gun that you suggested to mr. zimmerman, correct, the defendant? >> correct. >> do you know what the trigger pull is on that gun? >> the pounds per square inch, is is that what you are referring? >> yes. >> i do not know. >> would you agree an expert with firearms would be better suited to expla inthe trigger pull and all that stuff? >> without question. >> you are not here testifying as a firearms expert? >> i am not. >> i want the record to be correct with that. you did say you had discussions with the defendant, mr. zimmerman, regarding what type of gun he had, i think you taught him to shoot is my recollection? >> he had been shooting at a range before his father was career military. so it was not his first time going to a shooting range. >> but you made him a better shooter? >> i hope so. >> you mentioned in terms of discussions with him if terms of the firearm what to get. >> yes, sir. >> he never confirmed with you the type of holster to get, correct? >> he did not.
>> right. i mean, the hol ter he got he got on his own? >> effect c. >> did he show it to you? it was an internal, means you can hooipd hide it inside your waistband, versus the police officer in uniforms. is that correct, the difference? >> that's correct. >> it would be hard to see, internally, people would have a hard time seeing it, that's the whole purpose? >> even without a jacket, it would be difficult to see. >> okay. if it was dark, it would be even harder to see, correct? >> i would agree. >> okay. >> and you were talking about techniques in terms of shooting a gun and all that in terms of shooting, i gathered when you were shooting, whether you shoot at a target, you shoot to aim to kill, correct? >> you aim center mass, center of the target. >> center mass, meaning the heart the torso, correct? >> absolutely correct. >> you keep shooting until the
threat is gone. if the person is gone, you keep shooting until the threat is gone? >> it's not so much as the person is alive, it's until the threat is neutralized. >> in other words, you would never holster your gun if the person was alive and a threat to you, correct? >> well, i disagree with that. >> you would? >> i would disagree. my thought would be would be, let's say someone was a threat to me with a knife or a firearm, even if they had the knife in their hand but they surrendered and started following my instruction, i would consider them neutralized. >> okay. other than in that scenario, the there is a threat, you keep shooting, correct? >> not if they're not aggressively harming you. >> you would holster the gun if you thought the person had a firearms, still? >> i had enough confidence to know i might be able to retreat fast enough if they jump back at me. >> you say you shoot somebody, they are going for the gun, you would holster your gun? >> not if they're going after my
gun. >> do you believe they have a gun or some type of weapon? >> if their hands are free? >> if you can't see their hands? >> i would keep the firearm out. >> pointed at the person? >> probably. >> and/or shoot because you thought it was a threat. >> you'd only shoot if you felt the actual threat of a firearm, a firearm pointing in your direction, then you would fire again until it's neutralized. >> in other words, if you feel if person has a weapon, you would not holster your gun, correct? >> it would depend. >> if you can't see the person's hands and you believe they have a weapon, you would not holster a gun? >> it would depend. it would depend on the type of weapon. >> if you can't tell what type of weapon they have, you believe they have a weapon, they're threat to you, would you holster your gun? >> well, i'm a person that would give police commands and give that kind of commanding prince presence, if someone is not obeying the commands on the heels of a very stressful and
physical confrontation, i would probably keep the firearm out. may be what i would do with training i've had. >> yes, sir. >> you talked about the gun in terms of how many rounds i guesstime people refer to as bullets. you know it's referred to as a round t. bullet is the part that comes out of the gun, right? >> a fair distinction. >> right? >> yes, sir. >> to the cartridge, et cetera, the gunpowder. but you are saying you would fully load and have one in the chamber already? >> always, no reason not to. >> you have saying that that's per policy, are you talking about police officers? >> police officer policy and in every department i've ever worked with. >> there is a dozen, you are not telling every citizen when they get a permit they are told automatically they have to have a gun in the chamber? >> not at all. >> you are talking about police officers? >> correct. >> there is a difference? >> i agree. >> now, you are talking about in terms of scenarios that you
discussed with the defendant. >> yes. >> you were asked about that. if a person, if you shot at somebody, right, and you didn't realize whether you had shot them or not, the person said, gave up, give up, what would you do? if they still were a threat to you? >> okay. they were still a threat? >> would you shoot them then? >> could you define what a threat might be? >> i'm talking about what the scenarios you discussed with the defendant? >> we discussed if they're a threat, let's say someone lice down on the ground follows your commands, you told them to freeze, lie down on your knee, you are not a threat. at that point i would probably try to restrain them. >> okay. so you discussed with him in terms of taking somebody in terms of arresting them or getting them under control, correct? >> if we did, it was something i wouldn't have remembered the specifics of it. he would not have needed to know how to arrest somebody or how to restrain someone.
it was basically if someone is a threat to yourself or to someone in the general public, you keep the firearm out if they're an active threat. >> that cal tek gun we talked about, when you fire it, you intend that bullet to go out the barrel, right, there is no like you don't like in the movies where you kind of squeeze the trigary little bit, when you squeeze it, you are intendsing for that bull tote go out, correct? >> right. correct. >> and to make sure the record is clear, now you are not saying that mr. zimmerman was a law enforcement officer? >> not at all. >> unlike you, obviously. >> right. >> there is a difference, would you agree? >> 100%. >> a big difference. >> i agree. >> in terms of what police officers can do and citizens can do? >> the short much different, correc correct. >> and i'm assuming in terms of
the scenarios you discussed with him, you are confronting a person, in other words, they're saying, they're giving up, they're backing up, you don't shoot them, correct? >> correct. >> i'm assuming, or do you? do the police chief teach you to shoot them? >> no. >> you mentioned about left-hand, right-handed, did you say he had shot the gun left-handed? did i understand correctly? >> he had shot both. >> he was proficient at boerkts he was right handed? . >> pro sufficient a relative word. >> could he pull the target? >> i wouldn't consider that proficient, just familiar. >> so he could shoot the gun and hit the target with his left hand. >> left or right handed. >> he was better right-handed, would that be fair? >> i thought so. >> okay. i need a moment, your honor. >> let's take a break, mark
. >> once again, this is mark osterman. he describes himself as george zimmerman's best friend. the defense attorney is now questioning him once again about george zimmerman and the use of that firearm, how it came about. stand by for this. >> we have that training. they also train that type of technique at concealed weapons permit classs to fire more than once, either at the two shot or the three shot. it depends on the scenario. it depends on the situation. it would depend on whether you have multiple assailants that are threatening you, something to that effect. >> and the purpose for shooting
more than once and going for center of mass? >> well, if you have a smaller calibre handgun, the impact of the projectile isn't as great. if you have a rather large person, someone over 6-foot, 5 something, very heavy in their weight, shooting a smaller calibre bullet may not have the same effect to stop them. someone who is perhaps under a hypnotic that is enhancing their strength. sometimes firing once may not stop them from being a threat. they may continue to attack. >> we had talked, you had talked to mr. de la rionda about an internal holster, you were not there when that was chosen, correct. >> correct. >> you have seen them? >> i have.
>> is there something sinister or internal in your mind as an internal holster? >> no, it's comfort. you wear what is comfortable and effective. there are some holsters some people will get that are worn for show, but they're kind of difficult to remove the firearm. sometimes you see that at a shooting range, where won is trying to get their firearm out of a holster, it's a struggle. always go with what's functional and comfortable. >> so we're clear, if i had a holster with the gun, the internal holster has begun, may i approach the witness for a moment? >> you may. >> i would think, yes. >> it's hidden from view, correct? >> in its design. >> in effect concealed the purpose is to do what? >> is to make sure no one can see it. >> that's the law, is not to carry it opened.
>> carrying one external would have it like this, correct? >> you would be required then to have a jacket or a cover. >> so if i had an external holster like this, this might be legal, correct? >> i would agree. >> this wouldn't be legal, would it? >> that would be a violation. >> this certainly would not be legal? >> absolutely not. >> but with an internal holster, i might get away with having illegal carry as long as the gun was not visible. >> correct. >> thank you, your honor. >> thank you. >> very briefly, your honor. you mentioned in terms that you shoot more than once, it's called a double tap, i believe, am i right? >> it is. >> you are shooting not once, twierks three times, however many times? >> correct. >> normally it's twice? >> well, we practiced that over and over and over again, correct. >> thank you very much.
>> may mr. osterman be excused? >> thank you very much, sir, you are excused. call your next witness, pleads. >> subject to recall. >> you are subject to being recalled, sir. >> the defense will call jerry russo, your honor. >> all right. we have wrapped up mark osterman's testimony. they are close friends of jrnlg zimmerman. mark osterman testifying about the weapon that george zimmerman used the weapon to shoot and kill trayvon martin. he is self-described as the best friend of george zimmerman. he is a usair marshall, a former
seminole county deputy as well. let's listen into this next witness, jerry russo, who is being sworn in right now. the defense, remember, this is a defense witness, what she has to sa say. >> you may be seated. >> thank you, your honor. >> good morning, ma'am. >> state your name, please. >> jared russo. >> russo? >> yes. >> where do you work, jerry? >> jeri. >> that's probably the more difficult one. there is probably more v variations. >> where do you work? >> digital risk. >> what is that? >> they do mortgages. >> how long have you lived there? how long have you worked there? >> i have been there most recently for about a
year-and-a-half and i've worked there previously in the past also for just over a year. but i had about a year's gap in employment. >>ing okay. >> and do you know george zimmerman? >> i do. i worked with him. >> was that first one-year period at digital risk or more recently? >> it was both times. >> okay. >> correct in that mr. zimmerman was there while you were there. you left a little while. he stild worked there. you came back, he was still working there? >> that's correct. >> would you consider yourself a friend of george zimmerman's? >> yes, i do. >> obviously, also, a co-worker? >> yes. >> even during the year that you weren't working there, would you keep in touch with george, mr. zimmerman? >> yes, we would keep in touch. >> did you know his wife as well? >> i did not know her personally, know. >> you kept in touch with george
zimmerman for the year you weren't working there? >> yes. >> when you came back, how often would you see him on a weekly basis? >> i would say sometimes daily or several times a week. it varied, quite often. >> have you had an ability to interact with him on almost a daily basis? >> yes. >> to hear his voice? >> yes. >> and if you can tell us, if you can, we started using the tomorrow of a spectrum of different voices, anything from conversational tone, yelling, laughing, you sort of tell us to the extent that you have heard him speak in different ways, tell us about that, if you would. >> you know, normal conversation, personal conversation, work conversation. i heard him speak in english. i heard him speak in spanish. >> if you heard him laughing or
yelling? >> i've heard him laughing, not yelling. >> okay. >> and my understanding is, of course, you know why we are here the event that happened february 26th of 2012? >> yes. >> and you had, did you speak to him just after that event? >> it wasn't just after that event. but it was in some time in the year after that, i couldn't be exactly sure what date. >> okay. do you recall if you can how far after a long after the events of the shooting that you spoke with him? >> my best estimate would be a couple of months before he returned to seminole county. >> that's when he was out before he came back? >> yes. >> have you had an opportunity
to listen to what we are calling the louder 911 call on the tape? >> yes, sir. >> i'm going to play for you and let me know if you have an opinion to whose voice it is, okay? >> yes. >> if i pay have just a moment, your honor. i'm going to play it one time straight through. if you want me to play it a second time, i know, if you want to me to go back to a particular portion of it, let me know, okay? >> okay. >> 911, do you need police, fire, or medical? >> maybe both. i'm not sure. there is someone screaming outside. >> what's the address? >> 121123 blaine. >> 23 blaine? is this in sanford?
>> yes. >> is it a male or female? >> it sounds like a male. >> you don't know why? >> i don't know why. i think they're yelling help, but i don't know. >> does he look hurt? >> i can't see him. i don't want to go out there. i don't know what's going on. >> they're sending. are you hearing help? >> yes. >>. >> there's gunshots. >> have you heard that tape before? >>. >> yes, i have. >> if you would tell the jury, how many times or when or the circumstances? >> i've heard it less than half a dozen times and mostly on the tv news, the first time i heard it was on the news. >> okay. were you able, first of all, do you have an opinion to whose voice that is?
>> yes. >> whose voice is that and let me premise it this, we know we hear someone in the foreground, a person by miss louder talking to the 911 operator, could you hear the noise, the yelling in the background? >> yes, i could. >> could you identify whose voice that was yelling in the backgrounds? >> george's. >> how do you know that? >> i recognized his voice. i've heard him speak many times. i have no odoubt in my mind, that's his voice. >> you said you heard the tape several times, is that mainly listening to it on tv? >> yes. >> were you able to identify mr. zimmerman's voice during the very first time that you listened to it? >> yes. my immediate reaction was, that's george's voice. >> was anyone there prompting you in anyway to identify the voice, one particular person over another? >> no. >> it's something you listened to on tv by yourself or with family members? . >> i was in my home.
i had the news on in the backgrounds the first time they played it. i believe i was by myself. >>. >> if i may have a moment, your hono honor. >> thank you, your honor. >> thank you. >>. >> good morning. miss russo, actually, you characterize yourself as a good friend of the defendant's, correct? >> a good friend, a work friend.
>> he would communicate well outside of work, true? >> occasionally, yes. >> you would text him? >> occasionally, yes. >> you could text him back? >> occasionally, yes. >> tell when the first time they played that, you said you heard it on the news, my question is when? >> i would say soon after it was initially released to the media. >> do you recall what month that was? >> i did not. >> you understood george zimmerman was under investigation for the murder of trayvon martin. >> i don't know at the point that i heard the tape that he was under investigation, no. >> he wasn't at work, was he? >> no. >> where did you think he was? >> all i knew is he was out of work. let. let me clarify, i knew about the incident that occurred, whether he was under any particular investigation i can't recall at the particular moment that i heard that on the news that there was a active investigation. if i said i knew that or i
didn't know that, i'd be guessing. >> why did you think he wasn't at work? >> what, initially? i thought he was out sick. then i heard he was out on f mla. >> but you are telling this jury, you had no idea he was being investigated for that murder? >> no, i'm not telling him that. i'm saying at the time i heard the 911 on the news, i can't recall at this moment if i knew at that very moment if he was under investigation. if i said i knew that, i'm guessing. the assumption is that yes, he was, why else would it be on the news? i would be guessing. >> you knew at the time you heard the tape that he had shot trayvon martin? >> yes. >> and you know now he's actually charged with the second-degree murder of trayvon martin? >> yes, of course i do. >> so when you heard the they, you wanted to believe it was george zimmerman's voice screaming for help? >> no, when i heard the tape, my
immediate reaction was, that's george screaming for help. >> did you want to believe it was trayvon martin? >> there wasn't a matter of believing or wants to believe who it was. i recognize it to be george's voice. >> because you never haermd yell before, have you not? >> no. >> you never heard him scream? no. >> so you don't know what he sound like screaming? >> no the choice i heard was george zimmerman's. >> have you ever heard trayvon martin's voice? >> no, i have not. >> you never heard him scream? >> no, i have not. >> so you have no idea how he sounds like when he skrems? >> no, i have not. >> thank you, judge. >> any redirect? >> very, very brief, your honor. >> you understand now he was actually, mr. zimmerman was out of state just shortly after the shooting, correct? >> yes. >> that calls for speculation.
>> well, it will be sustained unless she knows. >> okay. do you know, did you know where mr. zimmerman was just after the shooting? >> i didn't know his exact location. i knew he was in the state of florida. >> you knew he had to leave the state? >> yes. >> and that at first there was police investigation, correct? >> i believe so, yes. there was a shooting. >> and that he was not charged with a crime immediately, was he? >> judges, i object to that, unless she has that information. i would ask him to rephrase the question. >> i'll rephrase it. do you know when, how long it was before charges were filed against him? >> i believe it was a couple of months. >> so you know he was not charged initially by the police, correct? >> correct. >> and he wasn't charged until the 4th circuit came down from jacksonville and charged him. >> judge.
i object, leading. >> sustained. >> do you know who charged him with second-degree murder? >> i don't know who charged him. i know he was charged. >> do you know whether or nott the 18th judicial circuit, this circuit charged him? >> i believe there was a special prosecutor involved. >> you were asked when the first time was. i think he asked you the question, didn't you really want it to be george? weren't you hopeful it was george zimmerman screaming? and what was your answer? >> i just immediately recognized it as george's voice. there was no hoping it was one person or the other. >> you understand you are under oath as you sit here today? >> yes, i do. >> is your friendship with mr. zimmerman any hopes you may have to the outcome of this case, is that affecting your testimony here today? >> absolutely not.
>> if it was your opinion that it was not george zimmerman's voice on the tape, would you testify to that as well? >> yes, i would. >> thank you, nothing further. >> thank you. may miss russo be excused? >> yes, your honor. >> thank you very much, you are excused. call your next witness. >> i suggest a morning break? >> do you all need a break? ladies and gentlemen. they're going to call your next witness, please.
>> all right. they're calling the next witness. let's see who it is. the testimony from geri russo reiterating from what we heard from several defense witnesses that it was the voice of george zimmerman crying out for help on the that 911 call. you heard trayvon martin's mother, trayvon martin's brother insists that was the voice of trayvon martin. this is significant in as much as if, in fact, it was george zimmerman who believed he was in danger and he then shot and killed trayvon martin. would obviously have an impact on this decision by the jury. let's see who this witness is. let's get some more of this live coverage here on cnn. >> [ witness sworn ]
. >> you may be seated. >> thank you. >> good morning, ma'am, how are you? >> good morning. >> state your name, please. >> lee anne benjamin. >> and are you married? >> yes, i am. >> to whom? >> john donnelly. >> okay. do you know george zimmerman? >> yes, i do. >> and if you would, tell the jury how long you have known him. >> i think i met george nor the first time either at the end of 2002 or early in 2003. >> and if you would briefly tell the jury the circumstances of. i own and operate a local real estate business and george was working for the local evens company and i used to refer my commerce over to him, so i got to know him that way. >> would a characterization as a
business friendship be? >> yes, it started out as a business relationship. >> have you maintained a friendship sort of continuously back in 2002? >> yes. >> if you would, tell the jury the high points of that. how it happened, how it progressed. i'm sorry, do you know shelly zimmerman as well? >> yes, i do. when i have you talk to the juriant your relationship, is it one that grew with you and your husband and george zimmerman and his wife? >> yes. >> okay. >> so as you are going through this, are you talking about the relationship that grew between the four of you? >> yes. mostly, it started out though with george. >> i want to object to using the survey. >> one thing i didn't talk about beforehand, in a courtroom, we have to be very careful with the record. so we need to use full names. so even though he may be known to you more familiarly if you would use his entire name mr.
zimmerman or george zimmerman, i would appreciate it as would the court, if you would, using his name tell us. >> well, i first met george zimmerman through the real estate business that i was doing and i would refer my customer to his company he was working with and we got to know each other with the business relationship that way first and my offices are in the same building where his office was and we kept a refrigerator there and offered people to come for soda or something and mr. zimmerman did that on numerous occasions. then he began asking me questions about business, how do you start a business?
what's involved? what does it take to get going? things like that. so i took more interest in him then too because of that. he seemed to have a very keen interest in business and how to start one up. >> okay. did that friendship progress? are we now talking about the 2002, '3, '4 period of time in. >> yes, it did. we did things more socially. we would go out to lunch or to dinner and about that time a friend, a mutual friend was interested in getting into politics and the city of lake mary and my husband and i were helping him on his campaign and mr. zimmerman was also
interested in the political aspects and then we served on the campaign together. >> so was that sort of another connection that you and your husband and george zimmerman and shelly zimmerman did work on the campaign? >> yes. >> it sort of moved forward, closer to your relationship over the last few years? >> well, the relationship over the last few years has been a little more intermit ten. but when you have a good friend and you don't get to see them constantly, i think everyone has relationships like that. where you don't talk for a while, it's like you pick up where you left off. it was very comfortable. my dad moved in with us and was ill and in the hospital a lot. >> did that take then a lot of your focus away from friendships
and you focused on your dad? >> yes. >> did the friendship then sort of re-emerge or come back once this happened with mr. zimmerman? >> actually, before. my husband and i recognized that mr. zimmerman had a strovrng strong interest in business wand his age at the time we encouraged him to potentially go to college. we wanted him to consider that. we, at least i felt, there was the time later to do a business. so when i learned that he was interesting in school and going back to school, then that friendship picked up more then. >> is is that when he had gone to seminole state college, he
was in legal studies? >> yes. >> did you encourage that sort of maneuver towards education? >> yes. . >> and my background before real estate was in teaching. so education is a love that i have and i did a lot of volunteer work with respect to that and i realize that george was tutoring some young children and i encouraged that and i water very proud of him for. okay. and leading us up to sort of what happened, that brings us all here today, you knew what happened with mr. zimmerman being involved in a shooting? >> i do now.
but i didn't at the time. i did not hear about it or notice the news because my dad was having a very difficult time medically and i was spending a lot of time with him. so i was not paying attention a lot. >> at some point along the way, between february 26th and today, though, you became aware of what mr. zimmerman is going through with his second and third degree murder charges? >> yes. he called me. we spoke on the telephone for quite some time. i was not aware when he had called me that the event had happened. and i was not aware of any of the conditions or surroundings, so when we spoke on the phone, i spoke to him as my friend and we just talked. >> okay.
did you recall approximately when that first conversation occurred? >> well -- >> i'll preface it with this. we ask a question doesn't suggest it has to be answered. >> yeah, i don't know. >> if you don't know, that's okay, give us the year the season. >> let's take a quick break and resume our coverage in a minute. this is le anne bengals then, another friend of george zimmerman testifying presumably about his character. let's listen in, take a quick break, though. we'll be right back.
. >> the defense attorney mark o'mara questioning lee ann benjamin friend of george zimmerman about that 911 tape. she has an opinion whose voice is crying out for help. >> may i have a moment, your hon honor? . >> operator, 911, why do you need police, fire, medical? >> maybe both. i'm not sure. someone is skroeming outside. >> what's the address? >> 121123 twin tree blaine. >> is this in sanford? >> yes. >> is it a male or a female? >> it sound like a male. >> you don't know why? >> i don't know why. he's been yelling help, but i
don't know. send someone, pleads. >> okay. does he look hurt to you? >> i can't see him. i don't know what's going on. they're sending. >> do you keep hearing help? >> yes. >> all right. there's gunshots. >> you just -- >> have you listened to that before today? >> yes, i have. >> any reason for me to play any more of it or go back over it? >> no. >> do you have an opinion to whose voice that is in the backgrounds? >> yes, i do. >> whose voice is it? >> george zimmerman's voice. >> how do you know that? >> we've spent a lot or had occasion to get together many times. i know his voice but also when we were working on the political campaign, we were loud, waving science and just kind of hooping
it up and so i know what his voice sounds like when he gets excited or loud. >> let me have a moment, your hono honor. >> no further questions at this time, your honor. >> thank you. cross? >>. >> good morning, ma'am. >> good morning. >> you and your husband have contributed i believe $2,500 on behalf of the defendant, george zimmerman, correct? >> that is correct. >> and then i think there was some additional money that was provided to him i think $500 or
$400. now you mentioned clothes, et cetera. is that correct? >> i don't know about the amount my husband -- >> deals with that. >> deals with that. >> for the record, your husband's name is john donnelly, is that correct? >> yes, that's correct. >> but to your knowledge, you and your husband have contributed to the defense fund, correct? >> that's correct. >> now, if i understand correctly, there was a period of time that when he was younger, the defendant, george zimmerman, you were close to him in terms of business, then your dad was sick, so for a period of time, you were focusing obviously on your dad? >> correct. >> after he was involved in this, then you got caught up again, do i got that right? >> before. >> right before or? >> no, several months prior. >> okay. so that would have been this happened in february, you are thinking december or -- >> yes. >> december of 2011? >> yes. >> but for a period of years i
guess you were keeping up with him then you got. >> we were talking. we just didn't get together a lot. . >> okay. >> you mentioned that 911 call? >> yes. >> the first time you heard it, it was on the news in terms of what had happened? >> yes, i believe so. but i didn't hear it right away. >> you waited a few month, you think? this happened back in february of 2012, february 26th? >> no, when i realized what had happened because of prior jury experience. >> right. >> i tried to not watch or listen or read about it. >> so you heard about the shooting, you heard about mr. zimmerman being charged. then you listened to it on the radio or was there a recording
played? how did you listen to it? >> i think the first time i heard it, it was on tv. >> do you recall was it like this year, 2013 or was it last year, 2012? >> you know, i don't really know. >> okay. >> i know you gave your deposition in may of this year, duping it was before your deposition? >> oh, yes. . >> so it was sometime before the deposition? >> yes. >> but it could have been this year some time? >> it was probably this year some time, but i'm thinking i may have heard it late last year. i just can't remember. >> sure. that's fine. and the occasion for you hearing it, was it over the news or a separate recording played for you? >> i don't really know. i'm thinking the six was the tv was on in the background and i was in the kitchen. >> okay. sure.
did you hear the news, was there a story about the george zimmerman case and then they played the recording or do you recall the situation, the circumstance on you hearing it? >> i don't recall. >> okay. >> if you don't remember something as mr. o'mara said, it's perfectly all right to say you don't recall. we are trying to make sure the jury understands the circumstances. >> it was on tv. >> it was on tv. >> okay. >> probably related to the news. >> okay. so, in other words, and you were watching tv and id just happened or you heard it in. >> right. >> so my point i guess in terms of establishing the context in which you heard it, it wasn't just played out of the blue recording, there was some context it to, i'm assuming the george zimmerman case, so you knew it was realed to this case, right? is that correct? >> i believe so. >> okay. all right. then you heard it, what mr. o'mara played for you?
>> yes. >> then you heard it. you said a second time? >> yes. >> the second time you heard it, was it again the same similar situation? >> george zimmerman the charges, a story about the case and then they played the 911 call? >> yes. >> both times you heard it or have you heard it the third time, too? >> at the deposition? >> you heard it in the deposition? >> and then today. >> so and the deposition was played for you on a recording, correct? >> yes. >> but you had heard it prior to that and both times in the news in. >> yes. >> one time you were cooking or doing something else, the second time you were watching tv, it came up? >> no, i think i was probably cooking. >> so both times it was backgrounds noise? >> backgrounds. >> they said this was the george zimmerman case, you heard the recording, is that accurate? >> yes. >> okay. >> and i'm assuming, you never heard trayvon martin's voice, correct?
or have you? >> no. >> okay. and, obviously, you mentioned you had heard george zimmerman prior to hearing the recording, correct? >> yes, a lot. >> you had actually heard him before yelling like he did this time vai crying for help, that's his voice? >> very similar. when i heard it, it was related to political campaign locally. >> and i guess there was cries for help in that campaign? >> no. >> okay. so you hear yelling? >> whooping it up. >> like hey? or something? >> yes. >> was it him just by himself yelling it up or everybody in the campaign yelling it up? >> it was all of it, but i also heard him, too, specifically. >> i'm assuming, everybody involved in the campaign was whooping it up, correct? >> yes. >> it was pretty loud at that time? >> yes, it was. >> so you believe that you have now, based on that, are able to extrapolate or say this is
definitely george zimmerman's voice, correct? >> definitely. >> and the recording you heard, is it continuous, you believe you hear him continuously yelling for help? >> yes. >> there is no break, he yells, help, help, whatever? >> there were some breaks in there that i heard. >> there were. >>? >> yes, while the 911 call was. >> oh, i'm sorry. i'm talking about the yells for help as opposed to the other people. do you understand what i'm asking? >> no. >> okay. i apologize, you are hearing the recording, the one we just heard, do you hear yells for help? >> yes. >> are they continuous yells for help. >> it's hard to tell because the person's voice who is making the call made it difficult. >> okay. you are saying there is somebody else speaking? >> yes. >> you don't recognize that voice, obviously is this. >> no, i do not. >> the yells for help are continuous other than the person breaking in, saying something? >> no, it sound like they are.
it's very difficult for me to tell. >> so it's difficult for you to really hear the voice or? >> no, i hear the voice. >> okay. >> i haer the voice clearly. >> sure. >> and since you contributed to his behalf, you want to believe it was george zimmerman. >> it is george zimmerman. >> that's your opinion? >> yes. >> that's all can you testify about? >> correct. >> did you have occasion to discuss wit your husband, too, in terms of what his opinion was? >> we tried not to discuss this? ask is that on purpose? >> on purpose. >> i gather when he contributed to on behalf of the defendant, did he discuss that with you or did he do that on his own? >> he did that on his own. i was not in the discussion. >> you found out about it after? >> after the fact, he said i hope that's okay with you. i said, of course. >> you approved? >> yes. >> i didn't mean to imply he was doing something sneaky.
did you hear any other recordings in this case? >> no, not to my recollection? >> you the hear any recordings about his call, his being george zimmerman's call to the police that day? >> no, i don't recall hearing. is there any reason why you would have heard the story, you don't know why? >> no. because i was trying not to pay attention. >> on purpose. >> on purpose. i was trying not. i know that the news was going to be covering it. i just, and plus my work schedule, i'm not always home anyway. >> sure. if i play something for you, will you be able to recognize the voice that's on there, do you think? >> i'll try. >> okay. >> you haven't heard that recording where he's calling the police? >> i don't think so. >> where there is profanity