Other jurors distance themselves from Juror B37

Jul 18, 2013, 7:16 AM

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) – Four of the six jurors from the murder trial of neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman have distanced themselves from statements another juror made in a televised interview.

The four jurors issued a brief statement Tuesday on court stationery saying the opinions expressed by Juror B37 to CNN’s Anderson Cooper are not representative of their views.

“The opinions of Juror B37, expressed on the Anderson Cooper show were her own, and not in any way representative of the jurors listed below,” said the statement, signed by Jurors B51, B76, E6 and E40. The six-sentence statement did not specify what parts of the other juror’s comments they disagreed with.

Juror B37 said the actions of Zimmerman and 17-year-old Trayvon Martin both led to the teenager’s fatal shooting last year, but that Zimmerman didn’t actually break the law.

The four other jurors said in their statement that Martin’s death weighed on them.

“Serving on this jury has been a highly emotional and physically draining experience for each of us,” the statement said. “The death of a teenager weighed heavily on our hearts but in the end we did what the law required us to do.”

They also made a request for privacy. The court has not released the names of the six-woman jury, which included five whites and one woman who appeared to reporters to be Hispanic. B37’s face was obscured by shadow during her interview.

In a statement to CNN released Wednesday, Juror B37 said she prayed for those who have the power to modify laws that gave her “no verdict option other than `not guilty’ in order to remain within the instructions.”

Juror B37 had an agreement with a literary agent to explore a book deal. But under pressure from critics in social media, that relationship ended when she realized the emotions tied to the case once she was out of the bubble of sequestration, she said.

“My prayers are with Trayvon’s parents for their loss, as they have always been,” she said.

Court officials also released the questionnaire given to potential jurors on Wednesday. The six-question form asks if they had heard about Zimmerman or Martin; if they had formed an opinion as to Zimmerman’s guilt or innocence; and if they could put aside any opinion they had formed and focus only on the evidence presented in testimony.

Juror B37’s interview came two days after the jury acquitted Zimmerman of second-degree murder in the shooting death of Martin in a gated community in Sanford, Fla. Martin was black, and Zimmerman identifies himself as Hispanic. Zimmerman was not arrested for 44 days, and the delay in charging him led to protests from those who believed race was a factor in the handling of the case.

While prosecutors accused Zimmerman of profiling Martin, Zimmerman maintained he acted in self-defense. He claimed Martin was slamming his head into the concrete sidewalk when he fired the gun.

In the CNN interview, Juror B37 said she did not believe Zimmerman followed Martin because of his race. She said that Zimmerman made some mistakes, but that she believed Martin struck Zimmerman first and that the neighborhood watch volunteer had a right to defend himself.

Juror B37 said the jurors were initially divided on Zimmerman’s guilt, with three jurors believing he was guilty of either manslaughter or second-degree murder, but that the jury agreed to acquit the 29-year-old Zimmerman after more closely reviewing the law.

In a part of the interview that aired Tuesday, Juror B37 said it wouldn’t have made much difference if Zimmerman had testified because she believes he would have given the same story he gave investigators in videotaped police interviews that were played at the trial.

Juror B37 said at one point it appeared they might be heading to a hung jury as another juror wanted to leave. The other jurors convinced her to stay.

Juror B37 said a block of concrete that defense attorney Mark O’Mara placed in front of jurors during closing arguments made an impression, as did photos of Zimmerman’s bloodied head. She also believed Martin’s actions contributed to his death.

“I think George got in a little bit too deep, which he shouldn’t have been there, but Trayvon decided that he wasn’t going to let him scare him and get the one-over, up on him or something,” she said. “I think Trayvon got mad and attacked him.”

By not walking away from the confrontation, the juror said of Martin, “I believe he played a huge role in his death.”

___

Follow Mike Schneider on Twitter:
http://twitter.com/mikeschneiderap

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

United States News

Associated Press

Sewer emergency in Cape Cod resort town closes restaurants

PROVINCETOWN, Mass. (AP) — The popular Cape Cod resort of Provincetown declared a sewer emergency Thursday, ordering restaurants and other food establishments to close immediately along a section of its bustling waterfront. Provincetown officials said in a Facebook post that residential property on the affected sewer system must also reduce water use, including flushing toilets […]
12 hours ago
Associated Press

Jury convicts Wisconsin man in fatal hate crime crash

FOND DU LAC, Wis. (AP) — A jury in Wisconsin has convicted a man accused of intentionally targeting a motorcyclist in a fatal crash because of the victim’s race, in a two-phase trial that will eventually determine the defendant’s mental state at the time. Daniel Navarro, a 27-year-old Mexican American from Fond du Lac, was […]
12 hours ago
FILE - The Flint water plant tower is seen on Jan. 6, 2022, in Flint, Mich. A judge declared a mist...
Associated Press

Jury can’t reach verdict in engineers’ Flint water trial

DETROIT (AP) — A judge declared a mistrial Thursday after jurors said they couldn’t reach a verdict in a dispute over whether two engineering firms should bear some responsibility for Flint’s lead-contaminated water. Veolia North America and Lockwood, Andrews & Newman, known as LAN, were accused of not doing enough to get Flint to treat […]
12 hours ago
Associated Press

Armed man approaches FBI office, exchanges gunfire with cops

CINCINNATI (AP) — An armed man decked out in body armor tried to breach a security screening area at an FBI field office in Ohio on Thursday, then fled and exchanged gunfire in a standoff with law enforcement, authorities said. The confrontation at the FBI’s Cincinnati field office comes as officials warn of an increase […]
12 hours ago
Associated Press

Man arrested in death of co-worker at Michigan GM plant

ORION TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — A cleaning service employee who was working at a General Motors plant in Michigan was killed Thursday during an altercation with a co-worker, authorities said. It’s not clear what led to the fight at the Orion Assembly Plant in Orion Township or how the person was killed. Authorities said they […]
12 hours ago
FILE - Beto O'Rourke, Democratic candidate for Texas governor, speaks during a town hall meeting at...
Associated Press

Beto O’Rourke responds to heckler over Uvalde with expletive

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Democrat Beto O’Rourke responded to a heckler at a campaign stop with an expletive after the Texas gubernatorial candidate heard a cackled laugh while criticizing the ease with which the Uvalde elementary school gunman legally purchased an AR-15-style rifle. By Thursday, video of O’Rourke’s exchange at a town hall in rural […]
12 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Here are 4 signs the HVAC unit needs to be replaced

Pool renovations and kitchen upgrades may seem enticing, but at the forefront of these investments arguably should be what residents use the most. In a state where summertime is sweltering, access to a functioning HVAC unit can be critical.
...
Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

Why your student-athlete’s physical should be conducted by a sports medicine specialist

Dr. Anastasi from Mayo Clinic Orthopedics and Sports Medicine in Tempe answers some of the most common questions.
...
Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

Update your child’s vaccines before kindergarten

So, your little one starts kindergarten soon. How exciting! You still have a few months before the school year starts, so now’s the time to make sure students-to-be have the vaccines needed to stay safe as they head into a new chapter of life.
Other jurors distance themselves from Juror B37