Zimmerman: How Will the Defense Deal with the Terrified Scream?

We are far enough into the Zimmerman case to take a moment, step back and look at the big picture.

Pretend you are defense counsel and ask yourself what obstacle(s) must you absolutely overcome in order to have a chance to win the case. No matter what George Zimmerman and his defense team say in public, with a basement 25-year mandatory minimum sentence up to a potential life sentence at stake, they cannot afford to engage in delusional and wishful thinking or false and over confident expectations about winning the case. There comes a time when the bullshit must be put on hold and cold analytical rational thinking must be applied to assess the strengths and weaknesses of the defense case.

The terrified scream is one enormous obstacle to a defense victory. In this recording of a 911 call, you can hear the scream in the background and the single gunshot that appears to abruptly end it.

If you have not already done so, take a moment to listen to it and when you do, pretend that you are a juror hearing it for the first time.

After the shot, you will hear George Zimmerman’s voice yelling for help. Police recorded him screaming for help after he consented to provide an exemplar for comparison purposes. At the time he provided it, he did not know the terrified scream had been recorded in the background of a 911 call. For comparison purposes, an audiologist added his exemplar to the recording of the 911 call after the scream ended.

Even the most loyal Zimmerman supporter must be able to hear the problem.

To make matters worse for Zimmerman, I believe we can reasonably anticipate that there will be expert testimony under Rule 702 from the Assistant Medical Examiner who conducted the autopsy (he is a forensic pathologist), that the fatal shot destroyed TM’s right ventricle and collapsed both of his lungs such that, to a reasonable medical certainty whether he were conscious or not, he would not have been able to push any air past his vocal cords to cause a sound.

Therefore, if I were defense counsel, no matter what I said in public, I would tell GZ that we needed to figure out a way to exclude his voice recording so that the jury would not hear it and compare it to the terrified scream.


The answer is simple. If the jury hears that tape and compares it to the terrified scream, the case is over for George Zimmerman. That should be obvious even to the most fervent Zimmerman supporter.

The outcome of a motion to exclude that recording may determine the outcome of the trial and that is why the defense must come up with the best argument possible to exclude it from being admitted into evidence.

I call these sorts of motions potential outcome-determinative motions that must be won to have a chance to win at trial.

I would argue that the two screams should not be compared to determine if they match because the conditions in effect for both screams and the technological equipment used to record them were so different that there is no accurate and reliable way to compare them.

In other words, George Zimmerman did not fear for his life when he provided his exemplar, so his voice was not driven by fear and could not reasonably be expected to match the scream in the background of the 911 call. Also, the technological equipment used to record the scream and Zimmerman’s physical location where he provided the exemplar are not the same.

Therefore, the prejudicial value of permitting the jury to listen to and compare the recordings of both screams vastly outweighs the probative value and for that reason the exemplar of Zimmerman’s voice should be excluded.

The evidence rules in question here are rules 401 and 402 defining relevant evidence (evidence that has probative value regarding issues in the case) and 403 (excluding relevant evidence whose prejudicial value outweighs its probative value)

Put another way in non-lawyer language, you cannot compare apples to oranges and expect to get a reliable and accurate result.

The prosecution team probably realizes that the defense has to file this motion and, just as I have anticipated the defense argument, they will anticipate it.

The question is what will they say in response.

I believe they will argue that the differences identified by the defense are insignificant and go to the weight that should be given to the evidence rather than to its admissibility.

In other words, this is a simple matter that does not require expert testimony. Rule 702 provides:

If scientific, technical or other specialized knowledge will assist the trier of fact to understand the evidence or to determine a fact in issue, a witness qualified as an expert by knowledge skill, experience, training, or education, may testify thereto in the form of an opinion or otherwise, if

(1) the testimony is based on sufficient facts or data,

(2) the testimony is the product of reliable principles and methods, and

(3) the witness has applied the principles and methods reliably to the facts of the case.

The italicized language limits the use of expert testimony to matters that require the assistance of an expert for a jury to evaluate and decide. This issue merely requires jurors to listen to two recordings and compare them. This is a task that people routinely perform multiple times every day without the need of an expert’s assistance.

If you put yourself in the position of a judge who has to resolve this issue, you will see that the basis of the dispute between the parties comes down to whether the differences mentioned by the defense are significant or insignificant. How can you answer that question, unless you hear from experts?

The lawyers probably will anticipate that reaction from the judge, so you might reasonably expect the lawyers on both sides will attach supporting affidavits from their respective experts.

If I were the judge, I would schedule a pretrial evidentiary hearing for each side to present testimony from expert witnesses specifically addressing the apples to oranges problem.

In Daubert v. Merrell Dow, Inc, 509 U.S. 579 (1993), the SCOTUS interpreted federal Rule 702 to require trial judges to act as a gatekeeper in evaluating whether scientific evidence is sufficiently acceptable and reliable to be admitted into evidence and considered by a jury.

While the two recordings are not “scientific evidence,” the issues raised by the defense may require expert testimony from audiologists to determine if its concerns are sufficiently significant to exclude Zimmerman’s voice exemplar for comparison purposes under Rule 403, or to admit it for comparison purposes as relevant evidence under Rule 402, subject to testimony from experts on each side. That is, allow the evidence in and let the jury decide how much weight to assign to it.

Since there are only two possibilities as to the identity of the person screaming in the background of the 911 call, the dispute regarding that person’s identity reduces to whether George Zimmerman is that person.

If he is not, the jury will not have any difficulty identifying the person screaming.

This is how experienced lawyers and judges deal with important legal and factual issues in a case.

449 Responses to Zimmerman: How Will the Defense Deal with the Terrified Scream?

  1. Devout says:

    The problem for Zimmerman, though, is that he subsequently DENIED in a recorded statement that the voice on the 911-tape screaming for help was his. Who other than the shooter himself knows his own voice. Furthermore, when he gave the voice exemplar, he was saying “Help me, Help me”; however, that is not the manner in which the person was pleading for help. The help on the tape was a labored help.

  2. Patricia says:

    TaTa, because of the trajectory of the bullet and the placement of the bullet holes in the two shirts (matching, but out of their normal alignment), which would show Zimmerman had the shirts in a grasp, to control and/or detain Trayvon, it could be logical to consider Trayvon and Zimmerman both were upright, with Trayvon pulling away and attempting to escape at the time of the shot.

    Eyewitnesses, however have stated that Zimmerman got up off Trayvon after the shot.

    We know they were grappling on the ground a few feet away just prior to the shot – again, from an eyewitness report.

    The possibility (but not the probability) that both got up, or part way up, at the last minute, then Zimmerman fired the shot into Trayvon’s heart, could be “out there.” But there are no eyewitness reports to this.

    One witness was looking down from an upstairs window above the scene at the time of the shot – but it was very, very dark. What she saw after the shot was Zimmerman getting up.

    Zimmerman states he was over/on Trayvon at the time he frisked the corpse, after the shot.

    Theoretically, IF he shot Treyvon when both were vertical, or near-vertical, Trayvon would fall and Zimmerman could get then get on his body on the ground – but nobody has seen them vertical, and the night was very dark.

    But keep this in mind: TWO witness reports have not yet been released. So I am keeping an open mind about everything.

    I do question EVERYTHING Zimmerman says, becaue it’s so hard to find any truth in it. Or logic.

    Please stay with us TaTa, and send us your thoughts and/or questions.

    Intelligent participation is so needed – and I THANK YOU for yours.

  3. Patricia says:

    I have made a gross error in addressing TaTa when I should have been addressing Lakeview (again).

    TaTa amended his/her statement in response to Lakeview re Tracy Martin identifying his son’s screams. I misunderstood that amendment and had not traced the thread back.

    I apologize, TaTa. Your response(s) were great.

    I am asking your forgiveness.

  4. Malisha says:

    While I was looking for more information about how the LLMPapa video was constructed out of the picture of the tattooed man and the still photo of Zimmerman’s allegedly bloody head, I ran across this video clip:

    which really showed me two things: (Thing-1) How evidence can be misinterpreted so that it is taken to mean the opposite of what it means (and one way that happens is by moving from the conclusion backwards through the alleged proof of that conclusion); and (Thing-2) how the police manipulation of witness statements in the George Zimmerman case shows the extent of the contamination the SPD inserted into the investigation of this crime.

    The video shows a handwritten witness statement and, using some of its information (and not other parts of its information), develops the following “statements” (I won’t call them facts because they are not proven to be factual, even within the confines of a witness statement itself).

    1. Witness heard voices outside arguing.

    2. Witness called one voice “Dominant” which is also being called “Aggressive” and characterized the other voice as “Not Dominant” or “Not Aggressive.” From this, I will now name the two voices the “Dominant/Aggressive Voice” and the “Other Voice.”

    3. Witness then heard voices start up again and the one that was NOT Dominant/Aggressive began to call out for help and made a “Yelp” sound.

    4. I am now re-naming the two voices in accordance with her information, so that I call the two voices “Dominant/Aggressive Voice” and “Yelping Voice.”

    NOW: That is all the witness was able to tell us about the relationship between the words and the voices she heard.

    She did say that she felt bad not to have been able to help the person with the Yelping Voice.

    WHEREUPON the Police told her not to feel bad because the Yelping Voice was NOT the voice of the person who had died.

    She did not know that. She did not say that. The police told her that.

    Therefore, the creator of this video concludes, and repeats, and emphasizes, that Trayvon Martin was the aggressor in the fight, that George cried out for help, and by implication, that he killed in self-defense.

    This witness never said anything that could lead to that conclusion. In fact, it is far MORE likely that the witness’s own conclusion (that the Dominant/Aggressive Voice belonged to the shooter and that she was hearing the Yelp from the victim of the shooting) was correct than that the police advice to her (based upon no earwitness testimony, but based only upon the police believing George’s self-serving statement to them when he tried to exonerate himself for responsibility in the killing) was accurate. It is far more likely that the argument was:

    Dominant/Aggressive George-Voice Yelling at Trayvon to subdue him;

    Yelping Trayvon-Voice trying to get help from neighbors before being shot through the heart; and

    End of story,

    Addendum: Police mislead witness into thinking the killer was being victimized, justifying his “having to kill in self-defense.”

    The reason this shows the extent to which the SPD contaminated the evidence is really clear. THEY told the witness whose voice she heard being “dominant” and whose voice she heard “yelping.” If they did this sort of thing with every witness, one can presume that they also did this sort of thing with George at times, feeding him information to assist him in constructing a story that THEY would accept as true to give them the justification for letting him walk away from a crime.

    To me, the police are so complicit in this, I am not sure they didn’t arrive before Trayvon was dead, and then just delay until it seemed to be a “moot point” who had been the aggressor.

    • This is an excellent example of how police can contaminate and improperly influence the outcome of an investigation. As smoothly and confidently as he did it, I’m reasonably certain he did this before.

      Notice also that it can happen intentionally or unintentionally.

      Unfortunately, we have no way of knowing how many innocent people in this country have been wrongfully convicted behind this sort of improper witness influencing.

      I’ve seen this happen during lineups with police suggesting that the suspect is in the lineup and occasionally even suggesting whom the witness should pick.

      Serino is lucky he wasn’t fired for that misconduct. I believe he should have been fired.

      At least they inconvenienced him by reassigning him to patrol during the graveyard shift.

      Hopefully, he learned a lesson and won’t do it again.

      Hopefully, his fellow officers did too.

    • Laketree says:

      Malisha: Are you aware that TM father, upon first hearing the 911 calls, said that is not my son’s voice?

      In my opinion people posting on this site, as well as other sites have already established a position and are only looking for evidence to verify that position.

      If it goes to trial, and both sides have voice experts, the affect on the jury will be to create confusion ….. who does one believe?

      The defense may call TM’s father, who initialy said it was not his son’s voice.

      To be impartial, TM’s father later said it was his son’s voice on the tape. His reason for the change, the first tape was bad quality.

      Please keep an open mind.

      • Patricia says:

        Laketree, it is my understanding that Trayvon Martin’s father was asked if he WAS CERTAIN the voice was his son. He said he was not.

        Not CERTAIN …

        FYI, Moms hear their kids screaming far more often than Dads do.

        Also FYI, the first hearing by Trayvon Martin’s father and the detective’s question and the father’s reply were not recorded.

        I have NOT “established a position.” I am examining Zimmerman’s statements which are often bizarre, in conflict with his earlier statements, do not square with science AND FORENSIC EVIDENCE.

        You could move me to consider Zimmerman’s “innocence” if you could explain how he pulled that gun out from under his butt and shot a kid right on top of him — with the trajectory that has been verified by the Coroner

        Waiting to hear from you, kiddo!.

      • You need to get your facts straight.

        Serino played the tape with the terrified scream in the background and asked Trayvon’s dad if he was 100% certain that was Trayvon screaming.

        Dad said, “No,” and later changed his mind after he thought about it.

        That was playing “Gotcha,” which is an improper investigation procedure.

        This is the same cop who went around the neighborhood in the immediate vicinity of the crime scene telling witnesses that they were mistaken when they said the young boy was screaming.

        BTW, Trayvon’s mom immediately recognized her son screaming and GZ’s voice exemplar does not sound at all like the voice screaming.

  5. Malisha says:

    To me, the only real importance of the screaming being identified on the 911 calls is how it affects George Zimmerman’s credibility. Screaming “help help” doesn’t prove anything other than that the person screaming wanted HELP with something, OR PRETENDED TO. Screaming “help help” does not prove self-defense, either. If a woman wanted to frame a man for rape and she enticed him into having sex with her and then screamed “HELP HELP,” would that prove that the sex was non-consensual?

    On the other hand, if forensic experts make a credible case that the screams (whether “help” or other syllables) on the tape were not those of George Zimmerman, his gratuitous comments to the police
    about screaming “help help” will make him look like the liar I believe he is. I think O’Mara is well aware that he cannot put George on the stand — I think that is the real reason we’re going to have theater for another year or so and then a plea deal. UNLESS George escapes or fires O’Mara.

    • Lonnie Starr says:

      It really matters little who was screaming for help, since when GZ left his truck he became a criminal vigilante. Thus, he wasn’t following a suspect, because he had nothing to suspect TM of. There had been no crime committed, and he can’t claim urgency based on a belief that TM might commit a crime in the future.
      Because the law will not recognize that as a cause for any action.

      His status, after he left the truck, became criminal vigilante and as such he had no right to do anything at all.

      • When he left the safety of his truck and pursued TM, he became the aggressor and aggressors cannot claim self-defense.

        Moreover, their victims can stand their ground and use reasonable force to prevent an assault and battery.

        • Lonnie Starr says:

          That being the case, the fight/struggle/tussle whatever, is irrelevant as it is all part of Trayvon’s lawful defense of himself.
          I think the SP just may go to the GJ and seek a murder 1?
          All of GZ’s verbal thrashing about for an escape hatch is making a very unsympathetic figure of him. That plus the way he gobbled up the donated funds as a personal reward of a kind, paints an incredibly despicable picture to be pondered over.

  6. justice for Tm says:

    Professor how is it with all the evidence in this case the judge still seems to give zm and mom Whatever they ask for?

    • Permitting a client, whose conditions of release restrict him from leaving the county, to leave the county for the sole purpose of meeting with his lawyer at his lawyer’s office in the adjoining county and traveling to and from that destination is not unreasonable. I would have done that, if I were Judge Lester and y’all know how I feel about Zimmerman.

      Judge Lester did not grant the defense request to relocate outside Seminole County or to travel to the location of various media studios for interviews. I nwould also have done that.

      Regarding the subpoena duces tecum for medical records: they must be produced for an in camera review by Judge Lester. He gets them, he reviews them, and he decides whether they are relevant and discoverable. If he says “yes,” the prosecution gets them, or the part of them that’s relevant.

      This is standard operating procedure.

      I don’t know why the hearing in this case wasn’t delayed until after the COA rules on the writ. Seems like a concession by the defense that it’s going to lose the writ.

      Keep in mind that any statements that Zimmerman made to the PA at the clinic for the purpose of medical diagnosis and treatment are admissible pursuant to an exception to the hearsay rule. However, any other statements that he made, such as I killed someone who attacked me in self-defense, are not covered by the exception. Therefore, they are hearsay and inadmissible.

  7. Lonnie Starr says:

    The trouble will be serious, since Afro-Americans have a “throaty” component to their voices that other races in general and Zimmerman in particular do not have. You can hear this AA feature in the screaming voice, I’m sure if the screaming voice can be removed from the background and played alone, it will sound authentically Afro-American. If so, that will be damning. There would then, be no need for a comparison. The defense would then be forced to try to make a comparison tape, with GZ trying his level best to duplicate TM’s voice characteristics.

    Unfortunately for GZ, this would be the case if the voice matters could be taken alone. But, since they need the “envelope” of a vicious, life threatening attack to provoke them, absent such an attack, GZ’s attempt to claim the screams will fall on deaf ears at trial.

    Since the jurors will find it difficult to believe that a larger, heavier adult male, being assaulted by the hands of a lighter teenagers, could have had the wherewithal to fashion an attack of such violence, with only his bare hands as a cause, that a larger, heavier adult male would fear for his life at all.

    Most especially not a bar bouncer, who would be expected to fend off and/or deal with attacks of adult males, as a routine part of their employment contract.

  8. Malisha says:

    The GZ supporters have been doing just what HE has been doing; making up one improbable-to-impossible story after another to explain away anything that comes up. Remember when the “F*cking Coons” clip was first heard on the NEN tape? I remember laughing my rear end off when I heard that one of the Zimbots offered, “Maybe there were orange traffic cones in the way and George stumbled on them and said ‘F*cking Cones’ –”

    They just come up with anything. It’s like a high school skit where one fact after another emerges and the pathological-liar character comes up with one story after another to explain it.

  9. Sandra E. Graham says:

    Please help me out. I have gone through the discovery documents so many times and can’t find the description of Trayvons pants. I know I read it somewhere. GZ descibes them as sweat pants or jeans. Officer Smith, at the scene describes them as jeans. I can only find that they were described as pants elsewhere.

    • Patricia says:

      Sandra, page 10/183 of the first document dump states item # 33 is “pants” “cloth” and item # 34 is “underwear” “cloth” – both from the unidentified victim with data frm the Medical Examiner.

      On page 8/183 item # 19 is “jeans & belt” identifed as “blue colored jeans” from George Michael Zimmerman (but tagged by Sanford PD).

      The M.E. is much less descriptive than SPD, but I would think you could be assured that “pants” doesn’t mean “shorts” (I included the underwear so you know that was bagged as evidence and that it does NOT refer to the underwear as “shorts.”) I would hope the M.E. would enter “jeans” as “jeans” if in fact Trayvon was wearing them but they have very little description on any of their exhibits.

      I think you could be confident Trayvon was wearing the chino-colored fabric pants you saw inthe 7-11 security video. What’s important in this case is the tag (#33). What you found (“pants”) is the only official identifier.

      GZ’s boosters must be grasping at straws.
      Trayvon’s case gets stronger & stronger!

      • Sandra E. Graham says:

        GZ said jeans, Smith said jeans. On other sites, they are saying Trayvon may have made it home and changed because his pants were wet from the rain. I can not find anywhere where the pants are identified as tan and there is no evidence that they were analyzed. I find that all of GZs clothing items are described in detail right down to the brand. Trayvons clothing is the same. But pants are described as merely pants. Curious. All I can find from 2 sources in evidence is jeans.

      • Sandra E. Graham says:

        No shorts never entered my mind and I have no confidence either when my previous reply is applied. The video at the 7-11 shows tan pants. But, 2 people identified jeans. The authorities use no description when all other items do.

        • The argument by the Zimmerman supporters that Martin went home, changed his pants, and ventured outside to hunt down Zimmerman is absurd.

          1. He had no reason to do that.

          2. If he had done that, he would have grabbed a weapon of some sort, but he had no weapon.

          3, He would have delivered the Skittles and iced tea to his little brother; he would not have taken them back outside with the tan bag and receipt.

          4. His little brother told his mom and Trayvon’s dad that he never saw Trayvon again after he left to go to the 7/11.

  10. Sandra E. Graham says:

    The GZ camp is working on the hypothesis that Trayvon went home, changed his clothes and went back out to confront Trayvon. GZ described Trayvon as wearing jeans or sweat pants. Officer Smith also blue jeans in his report. The 7-11 video shows tan pants and the document dump apparently does not specify. They have moved to police inconsistencies.

  11. Malisha says:

    It seems that the Zimmerman defense team is not doing so well with their PR right now. They have reportedly closed down George’s FaceBook page because it was leading to “unhelpful discussions.”

    Now, if I remember correctly, the website was basically set up to raise funds. Perhaps the flow of money was either (a) diverted elsewhere by the website owner using the contributors’ e-mail addresses to contact them through alternative electronic addresses or perhaps (b) it stopped being a flood and became a trickle or even (c) various institutional supporters found an alternative way to either raise or direct money to the defense without the website being needed. In any case, one did not want “unhelpful discussions” did one?

    Just some electronic food for thought.

  12. Malisha says:

    As to her favorite genre in literature, I can tell she loves fiction. Particularly, “crime fiction.” :mrgreen:

  13. ajamazin says:

    Who is Rene Stutzman and what are her responsbilities and qualifications as a reporter?

    Rene tells us in her own words:

    Rene Stutzman
    Reporter, Sr

    My Role

    I cover courts in Seminole County, FL, Sanford, FL, police and legal issues.

    My Biography
    I graduated from the University of Kansas with a bachelor’s degree in journalism then went to work for United Press International in Kansas City, Dallas and Orlando.

    I’ve worked as a reporter at the Sentinel since 1990. I’ve written about Osceola County government, the environment, business news and now, legal issues.

    I live in Orlando with my husband, Ron, and a neighborhood cat, Katy, who is patiently trying to train us.

    My Interests
    Food, literature, music and the outdoors.


  14. Malisha says:

    Crane-Station: “Vindicates what?”

    I guess the pro-Zims believe that if Trayvon could speak after being shot, that vindicates Zimmerman, because Trayvon could have said he was sorry! Since Zimmerman did not report Trayvon having apologized, all of this was Trayvon’s fault and it vindicates Zimmerman.

    See? After all, Zimmerman said it on the Hannity show: “If I did something wrong I would apologize.”

    • GrannyStandingforTruth says:

      I know that our resident teacher diaryofasuccessfuloser would probably love to tap me on my hand with a ruler for my following comment and prior grammatical errors in other comments. 🙂

      However @Malisha, ain’t that bout a biscuit.” Zimmerman believes that there is nothing wrong with murdering an unarmed, innocent child even after I’m sure he was told that the boy did nothing wrong but return from the store and head back to his father’s girlfriend house. Btw, that’s another one of my own personal substitute cuss words or rather cuss phrases.

      I know, I know diaryofasuccessfuloser, but on blogs I am too lazy to proofread. 😉 Please dear, just overlook me because I’m set in my ways. 🙂

  15. TruthBTold says:

    Crane wrote,

    “No matter what anybody thinks about what led to the shot, after the shot, TM was a victim of penetrating trauma and GZ essentially smothered him. To me, that is beyond the bounds of humanity, basic decency or even the minimal bit of respect that one would afford an arch enemy.”

    Totally agree. Heartwrenching.

    “GZ had also best eighty-six that bizarre spreading the arms out to frisk craziness, because it is offensive.”

    Yup and it’s stupid too. Sure not the behavior of someone about to “lose consciousness” or was in some sort of altercation the way he describes.

    • BigBoi says:

      Sounds like first degree murder to me.

      • lynp says:

        Had this gone to a Grand Jury which is the only place in Florida that a 1st degree Murder Charge can be made, perhaps they would have agreed but we will never know as Angela took it upon herself to come up with 2nd degree Murder or no charge at all.
        Martin was not smothered but his part of his heart blown out with 2 lungs collapsing.
        Granny and Priss – no I don’t think Martin was a thug at al.

      • GrannyStandingforTruth says:

        @lynp, thank you for replying to my comment and letting me know that. 🙂

  16. whonoze says:

    Regarding Rene Stutzman:
    I have noticed her stories tend to have a bit of ‘favorable to GZ’ framing, but it is difficult to know why or how these shadings get there. Beat reporters like Stutzman only have a limited range of autonomy. They are assigned story topics and given column inch lengths to fill by their editors. The editors, not the reporters, write the headlines, tweak the stories to fit, etc. Stutzman’s editor could be trying to give GZ the benfit of the doubt for any number of reasons, political to economic to personal to professional (journalists live by their sources, and simply cannot afford to P.O. the people they rely on for information…).

    Lawrence O’Donnell’s attack on Stutzman was unfair and unprofessional. Not that her story was above critique, but O’Donnell just got it wrong. He basically accused her of passing on the Zimmerman version of events without any attribution. She did not do that. However, and this is consistently true of all her reporting, her attribution is weak. That is, she mentions near the top of the story that this is Zimmerman’s version, but she doesn’t repeat that as often as she should, so later sections of the story, taken out of context, can seem to be completely biased.

    Journalists may attempt to respond to the editorial pressure for ‘balance’ or being careful not to offend certain groups of readers, by including certain facts and framing in much more subtle ways. I had to wonder if this was what Stutzman was doing near the end of the story

    “I didn’t think I hit him because he sat up and said, ‘OK, you got me. You got it. You got me. You got it,’ something like that,” Zimmerman said. What else had he said, police Investigator Doris Singleton had asked during an earlier interrogation at police headquarters. “Ow, ow,” Zimmerman said.”

    If you’re really trying to spin for GZ, you leave that out, unless you’re a total idiot.

    • lynp says:

      I enjoy you’re posts whoz. Unprofessional Lawrence always gets it wrong. Noone is trying to spin for Zimmerman. “Just the facts Ma’am, just the facts” Joe Friday. I have no doubt that everyone is seeking justice and not a Witch Hunt. Folk do disagree on what is the truth which a jury of our peers will decide in Open Court without the minuse.

    • KA says:

      I am beginning to not care about media releases. The same media outlets they all thought Casey Anthony was a slam dunk and hired “specialists” to make stories and possible scenarios. It obviously was not a slam dunk and the coverage had little bearing on the case. The State then had a much higher burden of proof than is seen here with this case.

      Zimmerman is the one who ended Trayvon’s life. No dispute. The burden of proof is the absence of legal justification of that killing and the state of the mind of the shooter. I think there is significant evidence to support both of those burdens.

    • EveryoneIsEntitledToTheirOpinion says:

      That’s why I posted that video. Lawrence O’Donall took her to the wood-shed. She in the bed with the GZ family…

      • @EveryoneIsEntitled

        Lawrence O’Donall took her to the wood-shed

        And rightly so. I watched it. Lawrence called her out. She received the info from the SPD and wrote that article as if it were fact. And she’s still perpetuating the lie that Zimmerman had a fractured nose.

      • whonoze says:

        @ Southern Girl
        You wrote: “She received the info from the SPD and wrote that article as if it were fact.” That is a blatant falsehood. She attributed the story to the SPD. IMHO she did not give this the proper emphasis, but that is a long way from ‘presenting it as fact.’ I’m not a fan of Stutzman, but you have just libeled her, and such comments are not appropriate for a legal blog.

        Professor, I ask you delete SouthernGirl2’s post, and any other libelous comments made by anyone about anyone that appear here…

      • KA says:

        No libel, she is a public figure.

        However I do not know anything about this situation, I have not followed either media personality.

      • princss6 says:

        She made several statements that were not quoted and not attributed. It gives the appearance that it is a fact. I don’t know if an entire story and all things not quoted in that story can receive a blanket attribute.

      • princss6 says:

        Further, she revised the story several times to offer clarity as to who said what and when.

      • lynp says:

        WOW, all 7 of O’Donnell’s viewers must have been impressed.

      • GrannyStandingforTruth says:

        Delete southerngirl’s comments for what? Stutzman is a public figure, so that is not libel.

        • TruthBTold says:


          Yeah, I thought this particular request and seemingly emotional response was kind of bogus. Geez.

          “Delete southerngirl’s comments for what?”

      • @whonoze

        Unless you’ve listened to the interview Lawrence had with Rene Stutzman and read the article in question then you need to back off of me. I know what I read and I listened carefully to the interview. ABL from Angry Black Lady took to Twitter and pounded her for it and so did I, so did 3ChicsPolitico. Rene Stutzman made her headline from the statement. She stated it as a fact. She has written another article where she was called on about the “fractured” nose and has now updated it. Now I don’t mind for a second if the Professor deletes the comment, it’s his blog and I respect that. If you’re going to come at me have something to back it up.

        senturian at 4:05 PM August 20, 2012


        I see that Rene Stuzman is still perpetuating the lie that Zimmerman had a “fractured nose.”

        Zimmerman never saw an M.D. or went to a hospital or went to a specialist (as advised by a physician’s assistant) or had X-rays or MRI’s taken of his nose to confirm what some novices have suspected.

      • whonoze says:

        @ SouthernGirl2
        I don’t post about things unless I know what I’m talking about. I saw the original broadcast of O’Donnel’s interrogation with Stutzman, and immediately went to read the article. To be clear, I am not claiming the journalistic practices of the Stutzman articles are acceptable, much less model’s of good reporting. One of the first posts I put on my own blog was an attack on how the Sentinal DID present erroneous information as fact, due to lack of attribution, in a story under Stutzman’s byline. I wrote her editors, demanding a correction, and got blown off: http://tinyurl.com/d64tved

        However, to use a legal analogy, O’Donnel over-charged Stutzman, and worse, he bullied her on air. It’s one thing for a pundit to ‘get tough’ with a politician, another to rip into a mere working stiff like Stutzman. She tried repeatedly to get a word in edgewise to call his attention to the (weak) attribution in the first paragraph, but he cut her off, leaving viewers with the impression that her story had included no attribution at all. If he had let her say that, then he could have gone on to princess6 argument ‘That;s not good enough!’ (with which I would agree), which would have been a valid discussion. But instead, he went all Nancy Grace on her. I’m sorry, but I demand better.

        The story in the Sentinal was written in a way that could lead readers to lose focus on the fact the police report it cited might not be conclusive. You said “She wrote that article as if it were fact.” That’s not the same thing. Your statement is false, as a question of empirical fact. You also have no idea whether Stutzman herself is responsible for the weak attribution. We know her editors let it pass, which is shoddy on their part, and they may even encourage it to make the stories read more ‘punchy.’ Making a false statement implicating someone in a negative activity is the textbook definition of libel.

        And no, Stutzman is not a ‘public figure.’ You seem to be utterly unaware of the parallels (and no, a parallel is NOT an equivalency) between your remark about Stutzman and justincaselawgic’s attack on Professor Leatherman. You can have your own opinion of the Sentinal’s coverage, and we’d probably agree on that over 95%. But you can’t have your own facts. I WANT the news coverage challenged. But I want it challenged fairly, because the fair critique will hold up to scrutiny and be more powerful.

      • @whonoze

        However, to use a legal analogy, O’Donnel over-charged Stutzman, and worse, he bullied her on air. It’s one thing for a pundit to ‘get tough’ with a politician, another to rip into a mere working stiff like Stutzman. She tried repeatedly to get a word in edgewise to call his attention to the (weak) attribution in the first paragraph, but he cut her off, leaving viewers with the impression that her story had included no attribution at all. If he had let her say that, then he could have gone on to princess6 argument ‘That;s not good enough!’ (with which I would agree), which would have been a valid discussion. But instead, he went all Nancy Grace on her. I’m sorry, but I demand better.

        This is your opinion and it’s not superior over mine nor anyone else on this board. I stand by comment. Who is whonoze?

        • Whonoze, just like everyone else on this blog is entitled to his privacy.

          Give the pro Zimmerman hate machine, that is an important right to protect.

          Jeez, look what they are doing in an attempt to destroy my professional reputation.

          Fortunately, I am retired, but that is not true of most people here.

          This is just a gentle reminder. We all value your contributions.

    • ajamazin says:

      Do Stutzman’s editor’s write her tweets?

      “My Tweets”

      @Animaljunkie. Dr.Anderson: Lungs deflate slowly following a gunshot wound and Trayvon could have spoken for a few seconds or a bit longer. About 23 hours ago

      O’Mara’s motion. #Zimmerman, #Trayvon. ttp:// About 1 day ago

      #Zimmerman hearing Friday on O’Mara’s objection to subpoena. Trying to learn details. #Trayvon, #gzlegalcase. About 1 day ago

      RT @osnighthawk: Sad and beautifully told: Tragic story of the senseless killing and the 3 teen suspects: http://t.co/TRxE4fdO About 1 day ago

      #Trayvon survived several minutes after #Zimmerman shot him, pathologists tell the Orlando Sentinel. #gzlegal. http://t.co/GPLEPo5o About 4 days ago

      • Sandra E. Graham says:

        whonoze: Regarding your reply to SouthernGirl2

        You may disagree with many opinions, you may be an expert in a few areas. But, I find the superior attitude (IMO) toward many on this site by your criticizing and dismissing them, is not an exchange of thought or difference of opinion.I am not the moderator. Nor am I an expert in law, lighting, sound, forensics,, and many other fields involved in this case. I am also not an idiot. Case in point: ….mere working stiff in your comment to SouthernGirl2 about the reporter. You could have left the mere out of the comment. This is my opinion and may be my opinion only. I have been following this site for a few weeks now and your comments are often condescending. You weren’t addressing your comments toward me — but everyone reads them. So, I felt the need to address my issue.

    • princss6 says:

      Lawrence was right. When I read that article, I read the passages he questioned her about and wondered exactly what he did. It was sloppy and yes, she did have several unattributed statements in the article that she reported as fact.

      Just as she tried to give the appearance that the experts said Trayvon spoke to corroborate his story when as had been suspected by many, she never even asked the question of either “expert.”

    • princss6 says:

      From a discussion when this first happened…

      I disagree with the OP. One line of attribution is not enough. As I teach my students, even if you have named your source, you still must make clear exactly which words are yours and which come from the source. In their case, to not do so is plagiarism, even if they named the source. While the story states once that the source is a police report, it then makes no distinction between disputed and undisputed facts. THAT is irresponsible journalism, and that is what O’Donnell is calling the reporter out for. As he correctly points out, there is no “according to the source” or “according to the report” included with the disputed facts, and there should be. Each and every quote needs to be attributed to its specific source, so that a reader can know which claims are most trustworthy.

      Lori March 29, 2012 at 3:25 am via AngryBlackLadyChronicles

      But his specific complaint was “you don’t attribute that to anyone in this sentence,” which is perfectly true. That sentence had no attribution, and it should have. He did not lie. Whether or not you agree with him that one particular sentence needed attribution is a separate issue. The fact remains that the sentence in question was lacking attribution.

      Lori March 29, 2012 at 7:46 am

      I’ll stop there – if anyone is interested in reading the entire debate in full they can go here – http://angryblackladychronicles.com/2012/03/27/lying-to-support-trayvon-no-thanks-larry/#more-71660

      No need to have this argument on generalities and vagueness. I know what I read. I know as a reading I was left confused.

    • whonoze says:


      You asked “Who is whonoze?”, rhetorically I assume, as I have an ‘about’ page on my blog. I am 58. I have a PhD from the School of Journalism at a major University. I have read at least 10 book length scholarly studies of the sociology of news and newsrooms. Sui generis, my opinions aren’t better than anyone else’s, but on matters in which I have certified credentials, yes, my opinion is superior to yours, just as Prof. Fred’s opinion on any legal question is superior to mine.

      (And my opinion that GZ said “My keys are in the ignition” is superior to any other parsing of that phrase that has appeared on this forum, but if Jay Rose or Walter Murch dissected that passage and demonstrated it was something else, I would bow to their vastly superior abilities…)

      FWIW, I like the Larry O’Donnel show, and MSNBC is the default setting for evening TV half-paying-attention-as-I-surf. O’Donnel is good most of the time, and it’s good to see someone do the bulldog thing on people with real authority sometimes. Craig Sonner deserved everything he got from O’Donnel.

  17. lynp says:

    Crane and Professor Fred approve of inquisitive minds posting.
    What is the problem and obsession with oppossing viewpoint?

  18. Professor regarding donations, no problem and you do deserve it.

    Granny is a jewel folks. Always loving & caring. I’ll never forget how she reached out to me during my devastating crisis. She has a heart of gold! I want to write like her and Patricia when I grow up. 🙂

  19. GrannyStandingforTruth says:

    I forgot to add, a child walking with a grocery bag in their hand does not look suspicious, they look like they’ve been to the store. At least someone with common sense would be able to associate grocery bag in someone’s hand means they are returning from the store.

  20. GrannyStandingforTruth says:

    How could GZ not know that he shot Trayvon in the heart?
    The key to that is “I was careful to aim, so that I wouldn’t shoot my hand.” Therefore, he knew he had shot Trayvon in the heart and he had plenty of practice using a gun at the gun range. He sat on that child’s body with 207 pounds of pressure and crushed what little bit of life was in TM out.

    What person in their right mind would shoot someone in the heart and then “sit” on them? What type of mind-set is so cold-hearted that they can kill an unarmed innocent child for walking along minding his own business and not even blink an eye or show any type of remorse and smear the child after they realize that the child was unarmed and only returning from the store?

    Z didn’t even have an ounce of decency to at least say I didn’t mean to kill him or I panic and accidently killed him. Nope! Because he meant to kill him. His chilling words that let us know that were, “I’m sorry “you” had to bury your son.” That’s almost like telling someone funerals are expensive, I’m sorry to hear that you had an added financial burden. Smh! And his words are just as cold-hearted and callous as those people are who want to paint an innocent good kid who was the victim the bad guy. Smh! Nevertheless, it said in the last days, “And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold.” That prophecy is being fulfilled right before our eyes, but many ignore it.

    I have some errands to run today, so I’ll check back later on if I get a chance to because I’ve been pretty busy these last few days.

    Professor regarding donations, no problem and you do deserve it.

  21. tchoupi says:

    Mirre says:
    “Ofc. Ayala arrived about 2:30 after the shooting. Smith arrived less than a minute after the shot was fired. According to the police report Smith responded to 2821 RVC. I think Smith’s car was one of the cars at the N gate around the 29 min mark of the gameroom video. The first police car going south on TTL must have been Ayala.”

    This is a common mistake made induced by T. Smith’s report releases in the initial report back in March.
    In fact, there was no police on scene 2min after the shooting. The best evidence of it is JonW13’s picture of the back of GZ’s head. That picture was taken more than 2 minutes after the shooting and shows GZ on the phone.
    The initial police report has Smith responding to GZ’s NEN call first and arriving at 7:17:11pm. He was not arriving on scene, he was arriving. This is what he writes: “At approximately 19:17 hours, I responded to 1111 Retreat View Circle in reference to a report of a suspicious person. As I arrived on scene, dispatch advised of a report of shots fired in the same subdivision.”. The ARV message is logged on GZ’s call log at 19:17:11 to be exact. So, he was not at the T at 7:17:11pm, he was at the clubhouse.
    The initial police report further shows that T. Smith was first advised that the shot was coming from 1231 TTL which is the townhouse of Wit #3. From her front room on TTL, Wit #3 connected with 911 15sec before the shot and said “I see police now…” at 7:17:41pm. So, T. Smith’s report is corroborated by Wit #3 and shows that T. Smith was on TTL 45sec after the shot and 30sec after his arrival at the clubhouse.
    The initial police report shows that after being advised about the shot from behind 1231 TTL he was advised that there was a subject lying on the grass between 1231 TTL & 2821 RVC. He then responded to the 2821 RVC which is Wit #19.
    Wit #18 (the teacher) who lives north of the T and therefore saw every person who walked toward the T from either RVC or TTL saw 2 men coming with a flashlight.
    The first one is not police, he is JonW13, the one who took 3 pictures of the scene including GZ’s head. Wit 18 notices him while on the phone with 911 at 7:17:48 seconds after Wit 3 notices T. Smith on TTL. So, JonW13 arrived at the T 52sec after the shot. JonW13’s statements are clear, he had time to discuss with GZ and take pictures before police arrived.
    The 2nd person with a flashlight is T. Smith. Wit 18 notices him while on the phone with 911at 7:19:28pm. She also hears GZ’s arrest while on the phone and at 7:19:34pm she tells 911 dispatcher “Oh my god! He shot – he shot the person. He just said he shot the person. “.
    It took about than 2min & 30sec for police to make it to the T from the clubhouse. That’s why you can’t rely on T. Smith’s responding time to GZ’s NEN call.
    I logged it here: http://i.imgur.com/LLdUYh.png

    • KA says:

      Great find on W13…”..Wit 18 notices him while on the phone with 911 at 7:17:48 seconds after Wit 3 notices T. Smith on TTL. So, JonW13 arrived at the T 52sec after the shot. JonW13′s statements are clear, he had time to discuss with GZ and take pictures before police arrived.”

      So either 52 seconds after a fatal shot the two men sat around discussing the dead kid on the ground or they took pictures of a live kid struggling to breath….so which is it GZ supporters?

      • tchoupi says:

        The time of TM’s picture lying on the ground face down with his hands under him hasn’t been released yet. However, we can we know it has been taken at any time between JonW13 arrival (7:17:48) and Ofc T. Smith arrival (7:19:28). So, even if TM was alive minutes after the shot, he clearly wasn’t moving much.

        The only witnessing of activity on TM’s side after the gunshot is from Selma who said that she saw one foot moving while GZ was straddling him. Thanks to Wit #18 (teacher) we can time the moment GZ stood up as she tells dispatcher @ 7:17:42 “I see the person right now. I see him like walk.. walking”.

        So, the last sign of conscious life in TM made have been a moving foot before within 46sec after the gunshot.

      • tchoupi says:

        Actually I need to correct a mistake. The moving foot is not a sign of conscious life. It may just be some sort of spams reaction. So, I should say that it might be the last sign of life in TM.

    • Mirre says:

      Nice job. Really helps to have times associated with the events.

      I was kind of shocking to realize how long GZ was on top of Trayvon after he shot him.
      John’s statements don’t seem to make a lot of sense if you put them in relation with the witness with the dog. She goes back inside after she hears him say that he is going to call 911 and she sees him going back inside. She locked her door, checked the lock on the front door, went upstairs to the window heard the shot and called 911. Her call came in at 7:17:15. John says he walked back inside called 911 and while talking to the 911 operator and walking upstairs, he hears the shot. But his call came in at 7:18:00. And when you listen to his 911 call it sounds as if the shot happens while he is on the phone. Strange

  22. BigBoi says:

    It’s apparent from her reporting that Rene Stutzman is so deeply embedded with O’Hora that she’s willing to put her journalistic integrity on the line, much like O’Hora is willing to put his good reputation on the line by defending the likes of Whore Hay.

  23. Dave says:

    Here’s something to ponder.

    Two men are fighting, both seriously geeked up on adrenaline. The guy on top is doing his best to kill the guy beneath him (smashing his head on the pavement, suffocating him…whatever). Suddenly the guy on top somehow catches a 9mm hollowpoint bullet through the heart and one lung. Is the fatally shot guy on top more likely to use his last breath and few remaining seconds of life to:

    a. Continue doing what he was doing until he expires…or

    b. Stop fighting and talk to his adversary?

    • ks says:

      Boo. The sad but hilarious part is that GZ claims that TM was doing BOTH. Meaning still struggling AND talking to him.

      • ks says:

        Boo s/b Boom.

      • lynp says:

        There is nothing hilarious about this tragedy. A young man lost his life, another man is in the process of going to trial to determine the Truth of the matter. I do think “two men are fighting” is accurate. Anyone viewing the 7-11 video can see for themselves. Zimmerman haters have way overplayed child.

      • Dave says:

        What would be hilarious, if it wasn’t for the tragic, senseless death of an innocent youth, is the fact that there are people who evidently believe Zimmerman’s absurd lies.

    • lynp says:

      Well, it is America. The land of the free and the home of the brave where folk not only have a right to their own opinion but to express it too. Again, there is nothing hilarious about this tragedy.

      • GrannyStandingforTruth says:

        “Anyone viewing the 7-11 video can see for themselves. Zimmerman haters have way overplayed child.”

        What is that supposed to mean? Somehow because of his height that supposedly makes him a grown man all of a sudden? Or does it mean that he looked like a thug because he had on a

        “Well, it is America. The land of the free and the home of the brave where folk not only have a right to their own opinion but to express it too.”

        For once, I agree with you. However, seeing how this is the land of the free and home of the brave, didn’t that give Trayvon the right to wear a hoodie and to walk down a street minding his own business without interference from GZ?

        Your right, there is nothing hilarious about this tragedy, but for some reason I keep getting a vibe from you that says that you think GZ is innocent and Trayvon an honest to God victim.

        • Sandra E. Graham says:

          Do you understand those who continue to believe Trayvon deserved what he got, because Trayvon was tall and thin, he was an adult. Not under the eyes of the law. I think Judge Lester even addressed that at the second bond hearing. I shake my head. Reading the debate going on today makes me think they are really stretching that last straw. I am reading elsewhere how there are some who are convinced, if GZ is found guilty, it was because he did not get a fair trial. IMO, some have already resigned themselves to accept the inevitable because their focus is changing back to Judge Lester and their perceived bias against GZ. The arguments are moving from the ridiculous to the sublime.

        • Sandra E. Graham says:

          Sorry – I forgot to add that GZ saw Trayvon up close and personal and told despatch that he thought Trayvon was in his late teens. He knew who he was stalking – a child. It matters not what people outside the courtroom think about Trayvons height, GZ described him in NEN call. GZ chose to scare the wits out of a teenager by following him. Where do these people who continue to deny this come from (Question Mark).

      • GrannyStandingforTruth says:

        Excuse me, let me correct my error.

        *Your right, there is nothing hilarious about this tragedy, but for some reason I keep getting a vibe from you that says that you think GZ is innocent and Trayvon is a honest to God thug.*

        That is what I meant to say.

  24. edgySF says:

    Prov. Leatherman,

    I’m disheartened by Rene Stutzman’s response to Patricia re: TM remaining conscious after being shot in the heart:


    Rene said:

    “Trayvon could have spoken after the shooting for a few seconds or a bit longer…”


    Do think that’s true?

    Personally, I don’t see how GZ could have formed a sentence immediately after being shot in the heart.

    It defies logic.

    What is the reporter doing here?

    This is the same reporter who refused to answer Lawrence O’Donnell’s question (about why she revealed TM’s suspension), and got her arse handed back to her.

    Why is she reporting this as gospel, when it’s not gospel?

    Are her “experts” qualified to know if TM was able to communicate upon being shot? Do they have full access to all the necessary evidence?

    Is it me, or is she doing all she can to support GZ’s side of the story?

    Why would she do that??

    I take this a bit personally, as I’ve seen her around town. I don’t know her, per se, but what I do know OF her she comes across as a smart & fair-minded.

    I’m stunned & puzzled. Help?

    • boar_d_laze says:

      Maybe she covers their “legal beat.” In any case, she’s the reporter who used a “legal expert” for the proposition that Zimmerman would win the Motion for Immunity” on the basis of his 1 for 3 losing record on the same motion.

      The Orlando Sentinel isn’t covering itself with glory on this; but few newspapers do well with legal issues. Maybe none.

      Pliaja’s comment is illogical. If the OS reporter was “reporting,” so was Lawrence O’Donnell. Both ways have it you cannot.

    • KA says:

      This is an expert saying what is “possible” not “probable”.

      Many things are possible (ask Disney), significantly less are “probable”.

      Either way, it may be an “debate team win”, but a huge loss for GZ. There is no “winning” scenario for him in this.

  25. edgySF says:

    “they cannot afford to engage in delusional and wishful thinking”

    Prof, I love your writing style. Engaging & insightful.

    My $.02:

    – Upon hearing the screams, GZ admitted that that didn’t sound like him

    – To me, fighting to keep out evidence that he agreed to provide (the exemplar) is shady. I know this means nothing in court, but it’s something his supporters should note. He is suppressing the truth…his truth. Who does that? We all know that the truth shall set you free. And we are as sick as our secrets. What else is GZ hiding?

    – ” the defense must come up with the best argument possible to exclude it”

    the defense seems so off-kilter & desperate that I’m worried they’re combing your blog for assistance! Is that unreasonable? I guess I should follow my own advice…we’ve nothing to hide.

    – “George Zimmerman did not fear for his life when he provided his exemplar”

    GZ knew that when he agreed to provide the exemplar. Det. Serino, iirc, asked GZ “how did you scream for help?” GZ provided the example. He didn’t know the actual scream was recorded…so he improvised. But he was told to emulate how he screamed for help, and he did so…he emulated how he screamed for help. And it’s nothing like the screams that were taped.

    • edgySF says:

      note: I didn’t know of the “official voice exemplar” when I wrote the above. I was referring to the example GZ provided upon being first interviewed by Serino. At that time, GZ did not know the death cry was recorded. But he did know that people must have heard TM crying for help. So he immediately claimed that it was he crying for help.

      Based on that admission, I don’t see how the defense can keep the scream out.

    • Rachael says:

      Edgy, she said “could have” that doesn’t mean he did and that is just one person’s opinion. And whether he could have or not, it doesn’t change the outcome of anything and I don’t even know why anyone would think it relevant one way or another.

      I do not understand why this person is obcessed with this one aspect that contributes nothing. It seems that GZ has many other issues of real significance and to hinge anything on this would be a disaster for him, especially when the same possibility that leads one to believe he “could have” said something is the same thing that leads one to believe he died an agonizing death and was aware of it for moments longer than the gunshot wound.

      It is something I certainly hope is defense is not spending a whole lot of time on when he has real things to work on. If they are, GZ is in a world of hurt.

  26. whonoze says:

    A query for the legal eagles:

    Let’s say the prosecution goes the no-audio-expert route as the prof and boar suggest, offering the exemplar as res ipsa loquitor…

    Since the defense can expert-shop, and doesn’t have to reveal the results of any tests that don’t come out the way they want, if they anticipate the res ipsa approach would they want to have an expert at the ready to rebut the claim? So it’s Rodney King in Simi Valley – no that recording doesn’t show what you think it does, it looks obvious but let me explain with all my expertise how it’s not.

    So if the prosecution doesn’t have an expert, and the defense does, that could put the prosecution at a disadvantage in what prof L. has established as the key piece of evidence, yes? So might the prosecution anticipate THAT, and get their own expert just in case the defense springs one?

    In any event, I recall someone suggesting in one of the forums that the defense is sure to produce their own exemplar of GZ, in which he will be screaming in ‘pain’ in a way that sounds closer to the sounds on W11s call. I’m thinking he has to be capable of mimicking that better than his ridiculous exemplar, [but I’m not SURE : ) .] It almost seems they have to, in order to bolster the ‘he wasn’t scared the other time’ argument, either in prep for their motion to exclude, or to make that argument with the jury in case that motion is denied.

    So then we’d have competing exemplar tapes, and we’d be back to something like Owen-type spectrographic analysis to get beyond the logic issues e.g. ‘you don’t yell for help when you’re aboutto pull a trigger, and you don’t stop yelling for help if you think your shot through heart didn’t kill your adversary…”

    So I’m thinking a trial could still come down to an audio forensics show. Am I wrong?

    • boar_d_laze says:

      The defense cannot pull an expert out of its backside. The expert’s identity, opinion, and basis for the opinion will be known to the prosecution in plenty of time for the prosecution to review the expert’s report and engage its own expert. Anyway, the prosecution will have an expert. If and when they call her is a different subject.

      From a strategic standpoint a “battle of experts” aka “dueling whores,” works to the disadvantage of the prosecution by muddying the waters and creating doubt.

      You probably already have an awareness that insurance defense attorneys like nothing better than herds of experts. Substitute “plaintiff” for “prosecution,” and now you know why.

      As a rule, ambiguity works the defense and clarity for the prosecution. If that sounds pro-prosecution it is not. It’s how our adversarial system works. You could as easily say prosecutors ask the jury to ignore that some well-lit parts of the path don’t connect.

      Offhand, I believe an exemplar created by and/or for a defense expert would be inadmissible hearsay. At least that’s what I’d argue for the prosecution if I were disposed to challenge everything which could be challenged.

      If the defense expert isn’t limited to the same exemplar made by the police and can make his own, the prosecution’s expert will have an opportunity to analyze the defense exemplar(s) as well as the “science” the defense expert used to create and analyze them his own bad self. The prosecution is entitled to know, for instance, how many exemplars the defense experts prepared, and how many failed the expert’s own tests.

      Finally, Florida is a Frye and not a Daubert jurisdiction. Frye makes it much harder to get what the proponent terms “cutting edge” and the objector deems “fringe science” admitted. Under Frye, if the basis for the opinion isn’t mainstream in the field, the opinion will not be allowed.

      • whonoze says:

        @ boar
        In other words, ‘yes, it may well come down to “dueling whores,” because that will be the defense’s best move if a motion to exclude as prejudicial is denied.’?

      • CommonSenseForChange says:

        @boar –

        “The defense cannot pull an expert out of its backside. The expert’s identity, opinion, and basis for the opinion will be known to the prosecution in plenty of time for the prosecution to review the expert’s report and engage its own expert. Anyway, the prosecution will have an expert. If and when they call her is a different subject.”

        That’s the entire point of an expert. Scientific basis! What is it? A jury will want to know.

        I *do* think an expert is needed to uncover the actual words said on the 9-1-1 call. We needed help/better audio to determine coons/goons/punk.

        I agree with your previous post that an expert is not needed to dispute what is heard by the common ear on the who’s screaming point.

        I disagree that defense can’t pull “experts” out of their butts because it happens daily. Seen it (and sometimes fell for it) myself. To me, it’s part of how cronyism, pretty faces and powerpoints work.

  27. Patricia says:

    Entirely separate from the final moments of Trayvon Martin’s life, reviewng the Forensic Examiner’s report (page 137 of 183), I noted this:

    “At approximately 1910 hours on 2/26/2012, 911 dispatchers received a call from a resident of the complex. The resident advised of a B/M who was at the complex between the townhouses. The caller stated that the male should not have been in the area and he observed the male while walking his neighborhood watch. Shortly after the call the resident confronted the male and the two began to physically fight. Witnesses observed the two fighting in the yard and then the resident fired a handgun at the male striking him in the chest. The male fell to the ground. SPD and SFD arrived on scene. The male was pronounced at 1930 hours. The identity of the male was unknown.”

    Now, I recognize that’s second-hand information communicated to the Forensic Examiner – a thumbnail sketch of the action simply based on police and paramedic oral reports.

    But, in fact, it’s the essence of what happened: Zimmerman’s judgment that the Black Male SHOULD NOT HAVE BEEN IN THE AREA, and so he CONFRONTED THE MALE and the TWO BEGAN TO PHYSICALLY FIGHT and then THE RESIDENT FIRED A HANDGUN at the male striking him in the chest. The male fell to the ground ….

    That took from 1910 to 1930 hours.

    Twenty fateful minutes …

    Zimmerman just ARBITRARILY decided that Treyvon Martin

    That is why I’m so pissed.

  28. Patricia says:


    Professor Leatherman, early Saturday morning I wrote Orlando Sentinel reporter Rene Stutzman, to ask the question that many of your students asked today: if Trayvon lived, could he speak?

    I sent that in as a posting to our group over the weekend, but will reprise it here so that the class can relate the response I received tonight, and my further reply.

    (Have been out on assignment today and returned to over 100 e-mails, so I apologize for the delay.)

    I have replaced my personal identifiers in this with “Patricia” and removed some personal data in one paragraph that I sent Ms. Stutzman, but other than that, this is the complete correspondence.

    Because yesterday’s lesson related to “expert witnesses” I think this short exchange also illuminates the concern for dueling witnesses.

    To my mind, “Trayvon’s last words” would have depended not just on a full set of air-filled lungs, but sufficient capacity even if diminished, to expel the words (particularly when so much breath had been already consumed by the act of desperate screaming).

    In addition, his last words surely needed brain-vocal cord coordination to shift the thought process from “screaming for my life” to a jaunty tip-o’-the-hat “You got it!” to the guy who just pulled the trigger.

    Because the medulla oblongata (lower part of the brainstem) is the most primitive part of our brain, designed to provide automatic functioning for many of our life processes, I can see it managing to inhale once or twice or a few times after that devastating shot to Trayvon’s heart (although a medical specialist should opine, and I am not one). I guess that could be possible.

    I am not convinced that even if it supplied sufficient replenishment of air to Trayvon’s lungs, he would have shifted from screaming in fear to casual conversation with his attacker.

    With the air ebbing away, I think his only
    last words would have been a whispered “Mama … Mama …”


    From: (Patricia)
    Sent: Saturday, August 18, 2012 3:11 AM
    To: Stutzman, Rene

    Subject: Your report on Trayvon Martin’s death

    Rene, I wish you had asked the two doctors just how much speaking Trayvon could do after the hollow-point bullet blew out his heart and collapsed his lungs.

    Obviously, he could not have formed words because his lungs could not push out the sounds.

    His “last words,” in fact, were a prolonged 38-second scream of terror.

    He knew what was coming.

    Then the shot.

    Then silence.

    The whole country is suffering from Trayvon Martin’s death and George Zimmerman’s self-serving lies.
    Please do a follow-up interview with the doctors on this issue.

    Your reporting is excellent on this harrowing story. But on this one significant issue,
    it’s incomplete and needs this simple justice for the dead teen: honesty as to his last words.

    Not your fault – but Zimmerman should not be allowed to blaspheme Trayvon Martin’s memory.

    I am requesting this as past winner of the *** [NOTE to Leatherman students: have redacted the list of rewards & bona fides I provided to the Orlando reporter so she would recognize this as a request from a confrere] *** including columns on medical issues.

    I tell you this only to let you know that I recognize starkly beautiful writing when I see it.

    Your report is such writing. It just needs this one final note.

    A requiem, you might say.

    With great thanks,



    From: Stutzman, Rene
    To: (Patricia)
    Sent: Mon, Aug 20, 2012 3:20 pm
    Subject: RE: Your report on Trayvon Martin’s death

    I followed up today with Dr. William Anderson, one of the pathologists quoted in the story.

    He says that a penetrating gunshot wound to the chest, such as Trayvon suffered, results in the gradual deflation of the lungs. They do not, he said, collapse like a balloon that’s been popped.

    Trayvon could have spoken after the shooting for a few seconds or a bit longer, he said.
    I hope that helps.

    Thank you for your note and your very kind words.


    From: (Patricia) Sent: Tuesday, August 21, 2012 12:13 AM
    To: Stutzman, Rene
    Subject: Your report on Trayvon Martin’s death

    Thanks, Rene.

    I expect nobody is busier than you these days, so the speed with which you checked this out is appreciated.

    I need to educate myself on the “bellows action” for want of a better term, with which the body powers the muscles that move air in and out of the lung.

    It is my expectation (note: not my certainty) that audible speech is projected by air propelled out of the lungs. As the lungs deflate, there is, then, less air available to propel speech (separate from, say, a bubbling sound caused by rearrangement of air, liquids and organ/muscle within the chest cavity) after death.

    There was a perforation of the right lower lobe of Martin’s lung; with two fragments of the projectile recovered in the right pleural cavity back of the right lower lobe, which I would assume was a standard and expected break-away action of the hollowpoint.

    But the lungs are, in layman-speak, structured in somewhat of a spongy form like coral, and the air is held in the thousands of tiny sacs. So perforation of the right lower lobe would not, as Dr. Anderson points out, deflate the lung “like a balloon that’s been popped.” I see that.

    Trying now to figure out what “for a few seconds or a bit longer” would produce in intelligible speech in this case, and if the brain could refocus communication from screaming, which ceased immediately upon the gunshot, to a statement like “You got it” (or if, in fact the brain could focus at all, beyond the more elementary and primitive reaction of screaming).

    I expect, but do not know, that respiration would cease as a result of this trauma but the brainstem may keep it going. But it strikes me that extended screaming would use 90% of the lungs’ capacity, however the brainstem may continue inhalation briefly.

    Also I can’t fathom any test that could measure the ability to speak, albeit briefly, after such trauma. (And if there is such a test, I’m not volunteering … )

    Thanks for contacting Dr. Anderson. If I uncover any info on this subject from the left coast, I’ll let you know.

    Again, I appreciate the precision in your report and will keep following your work.



    • Pooh says:

      Very well done, Patricia. But in your argument you are assuming that it was TM screaming. And although most reasonable people believe that, I don’t think you can include it as fact when presenting your medical case.

      But as you point out, going from screaming in terror to uttering dramatic dying words makes no logical sense anyway. That’s unlikely to have happened, regardless of the type of wound.

    • ks says:

      Great post Patricia! To add, the OS expert doesn’t take into account the physical shock of being shot. In any event, neither the defense nor prosecution will bring up the issue in court.

    • Thanks, Patricia for getting Rene Stutzman to follow-up on her report.

      I thank you in my new post today in which I correct a mistaken statement that I made and apologize for the mistake,

      Good job.

  29. sierra11 says:

    If someone can tell me how Z managed too pull, co**ck, and “Aimed then shooting” will almost be the only thing that will deter me from thinking otherwise with esp. all the unfounded lies. Z, has only proven he has prefected being a “Professional Liar” and a murderer….

  30. KA says:

    Interesting observation, those that comment on several boards and news outlets that support Zimmerman, also emphatically support the police in the Chavis Carter case as well as I am reading in comments tonight.

    I can think of only one common variable between those two cases….

    • Teatime says:

      Another situation where everybody rushes to judgement before they have the facts? Another situation where people maintain their original judgement, even though there is clear and convincing evidence to the contrary?

      (There are a number of witnesses, most of them black, who are on video and audio stating the police had nothing to do with shooting the kid.)

      It makes sense to have INITIAL suspicions… and to investigate deaths. But when the evidence comes out suggesting it isn’t what you think, people should accept that.

      • KA says:

        He was handcuffed in the back of a police car. His wrists showed redness and swelling from the handcuffs. The “reenactment” in the police car had very loose grips on the wrists/arms. They were able to pull the cuffs all the way to within a few inches of the elbow. The wrist indications would not support that as probable. It appears that the handcuffs were much tighter than shown in the reenactment.

        There were no witnesses to the shooting. There are “possibilities” on either side.

        The NY former medical examiner said it was possible, but not probable. The trajectory of the bullet is also not correct to the reenactment video.

        It seems you deny that profiling and law enforcement prejudice does not exist. In these two cases, I have seen you yet yo take the side of the victim although there is “possibilities” on both sides.


      • KA says:

        And again…motivation to kill himself?

        His charge in MS was a pot charge. Probably not even going to be extradited for it.

        He was not driving had a small bag of pot with him. Jonesboro is a college town. The police are used to seeing that.

        So, there is no racial bias in a town with 22% AA population yet only 3 out of something like 147 officers were AA? They had a large college temp population that increased that percentage as well. DO you think there were only 3 qualified? If so, you do not work in an area where you screen and field applicants.

        Looking at those figures tell me there is bias. Sanford has the same scenario.

        Is it acceptable to have a AA population of 13 or 14K with only 3 officers of that same race? Should the police force be a representation of the community? My answer is yes.

  31. Teatime says:

    What’s TM stand for?

  32. TM says:

    JBMission has an interesting new video up.

    KA, your comment has been a question I have had. Were any of the GZ reported break ins, actually determined to be real break ins
    or perhaps just his need to make himself the good HomeWatchman

    • KA says:

      Unbelievable. How much time did he spend on that? He misrepresented several things around what Prof Leatherman actually asserted and what happened in the conversation. He was quite generous to himself however.

      I can only guess he feels better about himself now that he has written it out for faithful sympathizers.

    • PYorck says:

      The one ‘like’ is a nice touch.

      • KA says:

        The funniest part is I write a respectful comment to his post. He is not approving it, yet he responds to his “Groupthink” choir readily.

        SO glad he is so much more “objective” than us at this blog.

      • princss6 says:

        Calibre of GZ supporters…smh…a strong belief that everyone is out to get them and the world is sooooo not safe. Perpetual victims the lot of them.

    • edgySF says:

      note to self: skip anything provided by Teatime.

      the above link is creepy

      • Teatime says:

        What? I didn’t make you click on it. The professor devoted a full blog posting to him, I thought he might like to see his response.

      • TruthBTold says:

        edgy wrote,

        “note to self: skip anything provided by Teatime.”

        Ha! I can add a few names to that statement.

      • ajamazin says:

        Excuse me.

        My name was prominently mentioned and I am blocked from seeing certain portions.

        My email address has been posted here inadvertently.

        I tend to be cautious after being hacked and physically stalked
        several years ago.

        I was forced to leave university for a few months and move home with my parents after the psycho broke into my apartment and attacked me.

        Despite having excellent internet security, I am very uncomfortable.

    • No need to read it, I can hear the whining from here.

    • TruthBTold says:

      Why would this be of interest? It’s no secret that Professor Leatherman and his family is being talked about on the Internet. Foolishness.

    • bets says:

      Oh, dear. In response to this I went to his site. Then I came back and read the thread here that led to his attack on the professor. I left the following comment.

      bets says:
      Your comment is awaiting moderation.
      August 21, 2012 at 9:02 pm

      I just reviewed the thread you’re referring to. I’ve deliberately tried to read various interpretations of the evidence. I didn’t read all of yours when I first went through the thread b/c I didn’t find your arguments to be convincing. You tended to keep beating the dead horse in too many instances. Further, you’re attack on the professor was uncalled for, imo.

  33. Teatime says:

    Looks like justincaselawgic put up an article on the Prof.

    • Xena says:

      Poor thing. He needs a hanky.

      • ajamazin says:


        “Devout Player Hater says:
        August 10, 2012 at 2:09 pm
        Justin, I initiated a background investigation into this Blog for Security purposes and as it turns out, you are in fact, [snip] ”

        This entire blog history has been made part of the investigative file and is being referred to the Florida and North Carolina Bar counsels for whatever action they deem necessary.

        Moderator: This post has been edited to remove the name of the individual you’re attempting to have investigated by Florida and North Carolina’s Bar, because I will not be a party to such attempts.

  34. Teatime says:


    • KA says:

      Just FYI…some great fact finding from someone on this board left only 46 seconds from the recorded shot sound on the 911 call and the time Mary saw Zimmerman walking around and said it to the operator….they were using the exact same time recording mechanism on the 911 system (that is something I know a lot about).

      Trayvon was motionless, face down at this point. So at what point did ZImmerman determine it was “safe” to get up and walk around after sitting on Trayvon’s back? After the last gurgle? If he restrained as he said and talked to people, it could not have been longer than maybe 5 seconds. You should add up the things Zimmerman said happened and do the time allocation. It is impossible.

      How long did Trayvon continue to fight, sit up, and talk as well as have Zimmerman shimmie from under him, restrain, and now walk around? It seems documented it was less than 46 seconds….that is improbable nearing impossible and will never be believed.

      Now if Zimmerman was on top, this makes a little more sense. (except that is not self defense)

      Again, it has to be chosen between him being a liar or something clearly not self defense…or both.

  35. KA says:

    Keep in mind…there was no open cases of unsolved break ins…ie…no outstanding suspects.

    • edgySF says:

      Good point.

      TM was not dressed like a burglar. Serino noticed that right away.

      Burglars don’t wear white sneakers.

      • KA says:

        Or khakis and a Nike sweatshirt…not “thug”, not “gang”…There was only one “thug” there that night…and he is in hiding.

      • Pooh says:

        Burglars don’t case houses at 7 in the evening when everyone is home.

      • KA says:

        Exactly…on a Sunday early evening….please…we eat dinner at that time. Notice the amount of people home that called 911…

      • Teatime says:

        I suspect there may have been some burglars that did wear white sneakers.

      • Teatime says:

        “Burglars don’t case houses at 7 in the evening when everyone is home.”
        It was dark. And the whole point would be to SEE if there is someone home.

      • KA says:

        Ok Teatime…look up and see how many breakins happen at 7 pm at night on a Sunday?

        People are jogging and waling their dogs at that time. Trayvon could have been anyone ordinary.

        There was nothing suspicious about him except the only constant variable in the other 7 calls GZ made about “suspicious” men….it is, in fact, so stable that all other extraneous variables can be eliminated to form a valid causal relationship in any definition (since it includes all “suspicious calls over the past year, it would be considered a valid sample set). There is no other extraneous variable that was not eliminated as applicable in his “suspicious” NEN calls.

        ..and people call that research methodology “race baiting”…

  36. KA says:

    High level traits of sociopathy…many of the things we listed here in this post as well as seen over the past two months and mentioned on here…interesting.


  37. logi says:

    What about the content of what was yelled? I heard a tape that you could clearly hear Tayvon scream, “I don’t know!” What about the last scream clearly saying NOOOOO! ??? What about the content ?

    • ks says:

      Bingo logi,

      I suspect that content will be as key too. They may not be able to identify the voices but if they can show content that would tell the story almost as well.

    • whonoze says:

      Nobody’s going to be able to establish content BRD (beyond reasonable doubt), but it could be part of an argument. Again, the prosecution may want to avoid this for fear of a jury-narcolepsy inducing technical debate on forensic audio technique, ‘enhancement’ technology, speech production and the international phonetic alphabet etc. etc.

      • princss6 says:

        I would disagree. I would consider you an expert and yes to an expert or a trained ear, the bar is higher. I heard “I don’t know” in that audio tape. I think the bar is much lower in practical terms for the layman.

  38. Tzar says:

    this blog is awesome! that is all

  39. The Orlando Sentinel saying that Trayvon was still alive for a few moments after the gunshot is referred to as Media Sensationalism. They need to get a story out and garbage sells. The statement by the OS is not relevant but, if true, proves Trayvon died a hideous death. The last few minutes of Trayvon’s life were hideous, regardless.

    • Digger says:

      I do understand and have great compassion for any hair of a second that Trayvon could have suffered. Was only referring to
      GZ using the screaming of Trayvon in preparation of his own
      alibi for self-defense. I do also find it interesting the great compassion in certain situations as this and not in that of many in everyday sufferings perhaps that is why I don’t come off too dramatic. To me, Trayvon and everyone counts, everyone, today, yesterday and tomorrow.

    • Tzar says:

      and what exactly did he do to deserve such a hideous death?

    • Rachael says:

      I agree with you mainstreamfair, and it really disgusting me that they create the sensationalism and all the fallout from it but take no responsibility for it. For them it is only $$. A sad commentary on society.

    • Teatime says:

      It seems to me that whether Trayvon was alive, conscious, or could talk after he was shot was VERY relevant to many people on this forum. I believe the professor even included it in some of his blogs.

      I’m confused as to why so many people are suggesting that it’s “sensationalist garbage”. I don’t think that’s fair to the professor who, in good faith, believed it was very relevant to the case.

      • KA says:

        Relevant to proving GZ did not fabricate the ENTIRE story? maybe…that could hold some value for your arguing and debate tactics…

        Does this theoretically help GZ at all in his case (the real one)? Probably not, in fact, it could prove suffering and GZ’s willingness to encourage that to happen.

        I said below, I suspect jurors do not like people who sit back, take pictures, take about their gun, and allow people to suffer while dying…especially an 11th grader who had yet to even get a driver’s license…

  40. Digger says:

    What is the difference if Trayvon was alive for a few seconds, or minutes the point is that GZ said he was searching for weapons when the SOB had already shot the boy straight thru the heart.
    Why would he be concerned or not about a weapon at that point except to make it look like he felt he was in danger from a very DEAD Trayvon AS the cops arrived.

  41. TruthBTold says:

    KA wrote,

    “No a liar is not necessarily a murderer, but claims by Zimmerman of that night in exclusion of other corroborating evidence will not have a shred of weight.”

    Bingo! Credibility people, credibility.

  42. TruthBTold says:

    KA wrote,

    “No, I think some of the “experts” that are hired by the media are given very limited scope. They do not examine the whole case, they are asked very specific questions lending very narrow answers that are not reflective of a hired expert that would look over more extensive evidence”

    I hear you, but that is still grimy on the part of Orlando Sentinel. Are they trying without actually coming and saying it, that TM being “alive” for additional minutes or whatever lends credibility to GZ’s claims? It’s well-known that GZ has asserted that TM was saying things after being shot. So this is my issue with this particular reporting and still not even sure the relevance of putting this out.

    • KA says:

      In looking at the timeline, the police where there, at the most, in 60 seconds based on a timeline of 30 – 60 seconds that I have read. He had no pulse and was on his stomach when police arrived. He had to get a bag to seal the hole to even do CPR…What was this now 120 to 180 seconds after the shot? He could not have been alive that long, the screams abruptly stop. If it is GZ, then Trayvon was still menacing and the threat was not over…if it was Trayvon, the bullet silenced him and he died within seconds. He had NO PULSE when the police arrived less than 60 seconds.

      It appears the “experts” did not read the entire case nor even the police notes.

      • tchoupi says:

        From my estimate Off T. Smith arrived at the T roughly 2min30sec after the gunshot.
        Cf. http://i.imgur.com/LLdUYh.png

      • Mirre says:


        Ofc. Ayala arrived about 2:30 after the shooting. Smith arrived less than a minute after the shot was fired. According to the police report Smith responded to 2821 RVC. I think Smith’s car was one of the cars at the N gate around the 29 min mark of the gameroom video. The first police car going south on TTL must have been Ayala.

      • Mirre says:

        Smith never even looked at Trayvon. Ayala who got there about 2 min after Smith, tried to make contact, whatever that means. Third officer on the scene began administering CPR.

    • Mirre says:

      Smith was on scene less than a minute after the shot was fired. According to the police report, Smith responded to the RVC address. Ayala arrived about 2 minutes after Smith, and according to the police report he responded to a call on TTL. I think Smith was driving one of the cars at the North Gate, around the 29 min mark in the gameroom video. The first police car going south on TTL must have been Ayala’s car.

    • princss6 says:


      You said:

      Are they trying without actually coming and saying it, that TM being “alive” for additional minutes or whatever lends credibility to GZ’s claims?


      Yes, yes they are! They’ve been in the tank for GZ since the beginning. Renee has exclusive access IMO. She is a hack.

  43. TruthBTold says:

    Xena wrote,

    “Serino TOLD Tracy what others heard, that it was GZ cyring for help, then asked if he could be 100 percent sure it was Trayvon’s voice. He answered “no” to the 100 percent certainity. It is my opinion that many fathers do not know the cries of their children.”

    I understand what you are trying to say, but read TM’s statement in the second discovery dump and he explains exactly what happened as it relates to whether that was TM screaming or not. He has also come out and said that was his son screaming.

    • lynp says:

      I am not that interested to go through Doc Dumps.

      • TruthBTold says:

        Good for you. I wasn’t talking to you.

      • princss6 says:

        I can see it now…when documents outside of the flimsy record posted on the GZLegalCase website are presented at trial, the GZ supporters will swear, SWEAR, it is all made up to frame their hero.

        It is rather evident that his most ardent supporters and donors have not gone through all the evidence that has been released.

    • Xena says:

      Yes, TruthBTold. Maybe I paraphrased it wrong. You are correct. I also “heard” elements of the Christian Burial Speech in Serino’s approach when he played the tape for Tracy. It wasn’t much different than the cops telling witnesses that it was GZ yelling for help.

      Had I been afraid of being killed, was injured, hurting and bloody, I would have been on the grass crying for help when the cops arrived and helped me up.

  44. TruthBTold says:

    Crane wrote,

    “I want to know the rationale for wanting to make claims that TM was doing things after the shot. It seems totally insane to go down that path. It is certainly to be countered with a graphic description of probable suffering counter claim (choking and drowning in his own blood), what good could come that would so outweigh the awful?”

    No, it doesn’t make sense to rationale mentally healthy people but for GZ, he probably thought that somehow it will bolster his claims and remove criminal liability on his part. Once those type of people start to lie, embellish, etc., it is difficult for them to stop. I know someone like that. They tell wild tales with crazy add-ons. It’s bizarre.

  45. Zimmerman said he spread Trayvon’s arms out to the sides. How did Trayvon’s hand get underneath him? The hands were underneath the body of the victim lying face down, as per the first responders to the scene. How is Z going to explain that one away on cross?

  46. hinkster4ever says:

    I honestly cannot tell who’s voice was screaming. I have heard Gz’s voice but not Trayvon’s. I know that the screams were from a person terrified for their life. In the southern USA we have a saying “blood curdling”…..and this is how I feel when I hear these screams.

    That they ended exactly when the shot rang out…..tells me exactly who was screaming….because the shot cut off the ability to scream another sound. He is an angel now, looking down at George Zimmerman and he is not afraid of him anymore.

    George, on the other hand, best be screaming some blood curdling screams for help…..from his hide-a-way described by his attorney as about the size of his front yard….Judgement day is a’ coming, George…….

  47. CommonSenseForChange says:

    “Why would not the terrified-for-his life shooter not continue to scream? Why?”

    Exactly! That’s been my question since first learning Zimmerman pretended not to know he had shot Trayvon Martin. Makes no sense. There is no answer as to why Zimmerman pretended not to know he had shot Trayvon Martin dead.

    I think he *wanted to cast doubt on the police, wanted to cover he possibility of what tanybody else had seen, and generally just made $hit up.

    • Zimmerman knew that there were witnesses. He had to account for being seen on Trayvon’s back when he turned the remains face down with the T’s hands tucked underneath. IMO, this is why Z lied and said he thought Trayvon was still alive. He knew dang well that he shot his target straight in the heart. He practiced enough out on the firing range.

      • CommonSenseForChange says:

        Totally agree. Zimmerman’s depraved mind is what caused him to lie about what took place. I first speculated (at bcclist.com, I think) that Zimmerman was looked for confirmation that the bullet didn’t go straight through the body. Right or wrong, Zimmerman’s frisking of Trayvon is hands down evidence that he, himself was up to no good.

        I can’t think of a non-nefarious reason why Zimmerman would frisk the person he claims he didn’t yet know was dead.

      • Rachael says:


    • tchoupi says:

      That part of the story is very bizarre to say the least.
      No doubt on my side that the prosecution will use it to show that GZ’s narrative is a fabrication.
      You can’t be scared of somebody who just threatened to kill you and went for your gun and just go back for a corps-a-corps situation after shooting one round that you believe you missed. GZ had the gun in his hands. Anybody would have just kept the dangerous aggressor at gunpoint from the distance until police arrives.
      This part of GZ’s story is a total non-sense.

  48. Question: Why would a person (GZ) instantaneously and coincidentally stop screaming and never scream again, or even shout, yell or raise the voice after the shot was fired, particularly if the person who supposedly tried to kill you moments earlier is alive and well for a good long couple of minutes after being shot in the heart, and is continuing to struggle, swear, talk shit or otherwise threaten you, because they have made a conscious decision to spend the final two minutes of their life struggling, swearing or talking shit? Why would not the terrified-for-his life shooter not continue to scream? Why?

    Question 2: Assuming for debate sake, if the now-shot person stated clearly and consciously even with a blown out right ventricle, “You got me.” What difference could that possibly make? How is that in any way, shape or form helpful to the shooter in justifying firing that shot? I would like to know a clear, well-thought-out answer to this, because right now as I see it, a terrified scream stopped suddenly because the owner of the terrified scream was on the other end of a fatal and final gunshot, which means that that person was screaming for his life.

    What on earth am I missing?

    • Crane~~it seems to me that Zimmerman is trying to reverse the roles of himself and Trayvon. He said that it was him screaming for help but it was Trayvon. Z said that that Trayvon said, “you’re gonna die, you got me” , or something to that effect. I can see Zimmerman saying, “you’re gonna die a**hole” and “I got ya” after he fired the shot.

      Any movements in Trayvon’s body after the shot would have been normal nerve reflexes.

      Eg: If anyone is familar with poultry farms or keeping a few hens and a rooster for food and fresh eggs, you will know that you can chop the head off a rooster and it will take off and run almost a hundred feet….nerve reflexes. I witnessed that very thing back home on the farm many moons ago. I ain’t tellin’ how many moons tho.

      • Yup, exactly. I don’t believe for a minute that TM did anything other than bleed to death after he was shot. By making fantastic speculative claims that he did and by adding the bizarre claim that he needed to be restrained is likely to enrage a jury, IMO.

        I want to know the rationale for wanting to make claims that TM was doing things after the shot. It seems totally insane to go down that path. It is certainly to be countered with a graphic description of probable suffering counter claim (choking and drowning in his own blood), what good could come that would so outweigh the awful?

      • PYorck says:

        I think there was something very wrong about the real seconds surrounding the shot. Because of that he had to rewrite that episode, possibly more or less from scratch. GZ is just not very good at it. For example I do not believe for a minute that he drew his gun as described. Perhaps there is more. Perhaps TM was not on top of him at the time* or he died in some other way that GZ could not allow to be true.

        (* Btw. better be sure that there is no bullet stuck in the ground then… hmm…)

      • Mirre says:


        GZ was aware of the fact that people saw him on top of Trayvon right after the shot was fired. Selma’s statement and what GZ said about that in the walk through, makes me believe he was trying to explain that fact.

      • Pooh says:

        “GZ was aware of the fact that people saw him on top of Trayvon right after the shot was fired. Selma’s statement and what GZ said about that in the walk through, makes me believe he was trying to explain that fact.”

        Excellent point, Mirre. Although I don’t usually go for the “GZ was already plotting his defense” arguments.

      • Mirre says:


        Yeah, Zimmerman seems to look for explanations whenever he is confronted with inconsistencies in his story. But Selma opened the door immediately after she heard the shot, because she didn’t realize that what she’d heard was a gunshot. She asked him what was going on, and according to her he just looked at her. She stated that she had to ask the question 3 times, before Zimmerman told her to call 911.
        Now if you listen to GZ story in the walk through, he puts quite some effort into rewriting that part of the story.

      • bets says:

        (* Btw. better be sure that there is no bullet stuck in the ground then… hmm…)

        I recall reading that the officer with the metal detector was looking for the spent shell casing indicated a spot that ended up being several inches away from where it was found. There were also witness reports of more than one pop. Zimmerman’s gun apparently fired only one shot but there is speculation of an accomplice. Maybe they should look more carefully at the spot where the metal detector went off. I’m don’t have much confidence in this bearing fruit, and it would complicate the story a great deal, but there it is.

      • PYorck says:

        I think from what we know now the only bullet is accounted for. I don’t see how that would work without an exit wound.

    • KA says:

      I think the situation of the screams in more important than the voice analysis.

      I think anyone with logical reason will think it was the shooting victim that was screaming.

      • I agree. I don’t think voice analysis is even needed.

        I actually think the terrified scream is likely one of the primary elements of the case. Don’t quite know how they plan to deal with it, but that 911 tape will be presented. If anyone on the jury ever had a kid or a teenager….

    • TruthBTold says:


      You’ve asked questions that many of us are trying to figure out. It doesn’t make sense; it’s puzzling. Regarding your first question, I’ve thought the same thing. If it was GZ screaming for his life, why not continue perhaps not in that manner of screaming, but still trying to yell for help? We didn’t hear anything after the shot. It doesn’t make sense and is unrealistic that he was the one screaming for help and also let’s not forget his claim that he was being smothered as well right before the shot.

      • Not only is he not frantic after a supposed life-or-death struggle, it is quite the opposite. He is as cool as a cucumber. Plus, maybe it’s just me, but I find the part about getting on top of a fatally shot face-down person offensive.

        Yeah, he sure as heck should have shouted for help. He should have shouted for anybody who knew CPR for the trauma victim. I am still reeling that watch captain knows how to kill but not how to do chest compressions. He actually did anti-CPR by being sure the person was prone, face to ground, cutting off the airway- it is like he continued to kill him.

        No matter what anybody thinks about what led to the shot, after the shot, TM was a victim of penetrating trauma and GZ essentially smothered him. To me, that is beyond the bounds of humanity, basic decency or even the minimal bit of respect that one would afford an arch enemy.

        GZ had also best eighty-six that bizarre spreading the arms out to frisk craziness, because it is offensive. He didn’t even give the respect that one would give to a killed animal, and that is likely to come off as revolting.

      • KA says:

        I looked up the classes for Criminal Justice AS at Seminole Community where GZ studied and supposedly was only missing a class to finish, and CPR/First AId Certification was on the class lists for the degree. I suspect he actually took that class and was either currently certified (2 years) or near term certified in CPR.

        He had been training and dreaming of being a police officer, he knew what he SHOULD have done. Saving lives is a first priority.

        I wondered if the State pulled his school records to specifically see if he had taken that class. It is pretty depraved to listen to gurgling and let someone die if you are well versed and, in fact, certified in CPR and first aid.

      • Pooh says:

        Crane — “No matter what anybody thinks about what led to the shot, after the shot, TM was a victim of penetrating trauma and GZ essentially smothered him. To me, that is beyond the bounds of humanity, basic decency or even the minimal bit of respect that one would afford an arch enemy.”

        Absolutely agree, and very well put.

      • longtimegeek says:

        Here’s my new speculation about GZ’s statement that he spread TM’s arms. Suppose GZ showed TM his gun and said something to him, so TM held his hands up. Then, GZ shot TM anyway, and TM was lying on the ground and looked like he had been holding his hands up. So, GZ un-spread TM’s arms and moved them towards his sides or under him. Many of GZ’s statements seem to be dyslexic. So, why not this one also? Could there even be evidence to support this speculation?

      • longtimegeek says:

        I’ve been trying to understand liars better. I’m not doing well with it. But, I suspect that GZ himself may not know the answers to these questions. He doesn’t seem to care that his statements don’t make sense.

  49. PYorck says:

    Does anyone have a definitive date for GZ’s voice exemplar? I can’t find a primary source right now. GZ heard the recording of the screams during one of his 2/29 interviews at the latest. Everything I have found indicates that he provided the examplar after that. Of course that would be a bit surprising – not only that the police gave him that advantage but also that he didn’t do a better job.

    • CommonSenseForChange says:

      IDK the actual date, but I’m sure we can find it. It is my recollection that it came later than his hearing of the recording screams. Lest not we forget that Zimmerman, himself, said that the screams on the 9-1-1 call didn’t even sound like him.

      • bets says:

        Not recognizing his own voice – that’s not unusual. Have you recorded your own voice then listened to the playback? You don’t sound like you think you do.

      • princss6 says:

        Sorry, I recognize my own voice. I recognize my sister’s voice. It is only through video taping that I’ve recently learned that we sound a lot alike which is something my mom has told us, unbeknownst to each of us. When there is some confusion on the video tape and I think, is that me? I just have to listen a little harder to be able to discern if it is my voice or if it is my sister’s voice.

        I’ve not encountered anyone that does not recognize their own voice on an audio recording. Maybe you have but no I have not. As I said above, I know people who may have to listen harder if their are two similar voices but in isolation, the overwhelming majority can recognize their own voice. Or maybe, that is a symptom of his ADHD which he tries to offer anytime he doesn’t want to answer the question or gets caught in a lie. A sad, sad messed up thing to do to his fellow citizens with that condition who do not murder.

        But once again, in order for GZ’s story to be true, point by point by point, we have to draw the damn near improbable conclusion every single time. He is lying. He did not recognize the voice because it was not his voice. In fact, until that point, he didn’t even know the screams were recorded. He had no context AND he was busted! I’m not giving him wriggle room for the statistically small number of people who might, maybe can’t recognize their own voice on audio…


      • bets says:

        “Puhleez!”? I don’t see the need for that. When my voice was played back I recognized what I said, not the voice itself. I’ve played with the recorder with others, mostly children. They uniformly were surprised to hear their voices and only recognized them by what they said.

      • TeeTee says:

        I get what bets is saying about not recognizng ones voice when listening to playback recording. But I also feel there’s a difference between ‘recognizing’ vs ‘realizing’ what your voice sounds like during the playback. I’ve often listened to my voice after it’s been recorded on the answering machine after I’ve picked up on a call and especially if I was half asleep during the call. And thought, Is that how I sound?

        IMO, the reason Serino pointed out to GZ that was him screaming during the playback was due to the fact that, GZ didn’t display any type of emotion one would expect from the person who, just 3 days ago claims to be the one screaming for someone to help them. I don’t believe anyone of us would’ve been able to sit through that recalling of traumatic event and not been emotionally distraught. Sabrina Fulton, ran from the room in tears hearing those blood curdling, screams for help. Yet, GZ sat emotionless!

    • M Onan Batterload says:

      Thursday, March 22, 6:44pm. The date and time is given appox. 1 minute into the full version of the recording.

      As I mentioned above, the NEN call & 9-1-1’s had already been released to the public by then (March 16th). And yes, Serino played the ‘Gunshot & Screaming’ 9-1-1 for George on Feb 29th.

      • CommonSenseForChange says:

        Thank you! So Zimmerman had every motive and opportunity to do his best. He’d heard the tape. His best wasn’t even close!

      • PYorck says:


      • M Onan Batterload says:

        You’re welcome.

        Yeah, George knew the sounds he had to make, but he could not make them. I think his more ridiculous utterances – the ones that sound like a barking dog, a little girl, James Brown, etc – are the result of his trying to do things with his voice that his voice won’t do.

      • Looks like I was wrong. Sorry.

        But this is worse for him because he knew what the recording sounded like and he could not come close to matching it.

    • edgySF says:

      Frankly, I didn’t even KNOW there was an official “voice exemplar.”

      What I was referring to earlier, on another thread…was when GZ was being interviewed on tape. Det. Serino asked him how he yelled for help, and GZ responded with “Help! Help! Help!” It sounded nothing like the cries recorded on tape. It sounded like an adult man efficiently notifying others that he needed help. The actual cry sounded like a death cry.

      When he did that, it was immediately following the killing. GZ didn’t know the death cry was caught on tape.

      Also, imo, GZ is the one who tried to smother somebody — Trayvon. Because GZ did not want help. He did not want somebody to call 911. He did not want somebody to break them up.

      So the first thing he said to cops on the scene was: “I screamed for help but nobody helped me.” He immediately planted the seeds to set himself up as the screamer. He knew people heard TM screaming for help.

      But he didn’t know the screams were recorded.

      Since GZ immediately claimed to cops that he screamed for help, I don’t see how the defense can keep the tapes out. I’m no lawyer, though…but it seems to me like GZ opened the door when he claimed it was he who screamed for help, and not Trayvon Martin.

  50. lynp says:

    Mary Crutcher said it was a little boy screaming. Austin said “He saw a MAN laying on the ground, needing help and screaming”. Martin’s father said it was not his son and Zimmeman Sr. said it was his son. Did anyone identify a teen? Lots of conflicking testimony.

    • CommonSenseForChange says:

      Martin’s father never said that. Zimmerman’s estranged father said it was Zimmerman’s voice which he could identify based on hearing Zimmerman scream when they lived together in VA — when Zimmerman was a teen himself. That equals young voice, not grown man voice, imo.

      • Xena says:

        Right CSFC! When I read Serino’s report, it sounded like he used a version of the Christian Burial Speech on Tracy Martin. Professor will no doubt know what I mean. Serino TOLD Tracy what others heard, that it was GZ cyring for help, then asked if he could be 100 percent sure it was Trayvon’s voice. He answered “no” to the 100 percent certainity. It is my opinion that many fathers do not know the cries of their children. OTOH, a mother can hear her newborn cry in a nursery with 50 other babies and pick out the voice. Sybrina did not hesitate. She immediately identified the voice as that of Trayvon’s.

      • TruthBTold says:


        Right. It was so funny and obviously an untruth when BDLR cross-examined RZ and RZ said that he know it was GZ because he heard him scream like that before (paraphrasing). BDLR was like you heard him scream like that before? LOL. Truthfully, I don’t expect anything less from GZ’s parents, but my goodness think a little before you speak so as to at least come off somewhat credible.

      • boar_d_laze says:

        The defense calls Robert Zimmerman Sr. at its own peril.

        Before the arrest, he represented George Zimmerman by telling a version of the defendant’s story which is extremely easy to disprove.

        That puts the defense on the horns of a dilemma. Either Robert Zimmerman lied when he said George told him the bogus story; or George Zimmerman lied when he told the story to his father.

    • Actually, lynp, Austin’s testimony did not conflict with the idea that GZ was actually on top at the gunshot. Austin saw only one person on the ground looking like he had “hurt his foot” or something. At that distance, he would only see one person, the one on top, not the one lying underneath. I would venture to say that Austin actually did see GZ on top of Trayvon. He only saw one person, the one on top. That’s how I see it.

      • lynp says:

        Austin said “I saw a man LAYING on the ground, needing help and screaming”. Austin, himself a teenager sees and interacts with other teen during school and I think he, more then anyone, knows the difference between a teen and a man and perhaps their screams.

      • Diaryofasuccessfulloser says:

        Lump, Austin SAW a man on the ground, no one else. He SAW one person. The screams were coming from that direction. He concluded that the only one there must have been screaming. But what he SAW was a man.

      • Diaryofasuccessfulloser says:

        Lynp, sorry.

    • EveryoneIsEntitledToTheirOpinion says:

      Lock GZ up please…

  51. Oops comment posted prematurely. Prof, do you welcome inquisitive minds?

    • He is working through comments on a different screen. They appear in a list. I read him this question out loud, and the answer is YES!

      • Crane~~I have always wanted to be a teacher’s pet but never dreamed of being a professor’s one. Woot Woot. lol

        • LOL, funny story: We met in a Forensics class at the University of Washington where I was the student and he was the teacher. (We did not date until after the class ended). It was a certificate course in Forensics, and there were interesting teachers, including blood spatter expert Stewart James, forensic pathologist Donald Reay and others. Fascinating stuff.

      • lynp says:

        Thank you Crane and Professor Fred.

  52. FYI~~

    I address most of my comments to Professor Leatherman. He should be the one to let me know if I get out of line. I am in the process of learning about about the laws.

  53. KA says:

    I have a question, is the evidence rulings the same for the immunity hearing for the judge? He has seen most of the documents he had to make rulings on and some of the evidence allowed to be entered in the bond hearing seem to not be subject to those same rules (ie the Dr report that clearly had Zimmerman stated information in it not directly applicable to medical diagnosis)

    • The evidentiary rulings might not necessarily be the same for the immunity hearing because a judge is presumed to know what evidence may be considered and what evidence may not be considered. He would be presumed to base his decision on evidence that can be considered.

      Smart judges generally let all the evidence in, rather than exclude evidence that a jury should not consider, in order to avoid creating an appellate issue. Then they write their decision making sure to base it on the properly admitted evidence.

      Their ability to make discretionary decisions like this is one of their greatest powers and their ability to disguise why they are deciding the case the way they do in a bulletproof way to withstand an appeal is one of the primary reasons why it is an extremely bad idea to piss off a judge.

      • Prof~~with all due respect, a liar does not make a murderer. Judge Lester has to rule by the book and write an Order for his findings. Judge Lester is sitting on my fence now wondering if he will stay or go. lol

      • Another great power of a sitting judge is to overturn a death penalty sentence after a jury brings back a 7-5 for death. I know this is rare tho. Right?

      • CommonSenseForChange says:

        @mainstreamfair –

        “a liar does not make a murderer”

        Neither does a truth teller. I believe that’s part of your point. Yes, Judge Lester has to rule by the book, but I don’t think he’s worried about whether or not O’Mara’s bogus claim of bias will prevail. If he’s ruled by the book, there’s no reason for Lester to go, right?

      • KA says:

        I agree that it is a bad idea. With the amount of subjective decisions made to “frame” a trial, I am still truly shocked they even went for recusal.

      • KA says:

        No a liar is not necessarily a murderer, but claims by Zimmerman of that night in exclusion of other corroborating evidence will not have a shred of weight.

        He knows him to be a person that will deceive when needed in this very court. With the possibility of facing life in prison, his words should be taken with a grain of salt.

        I do not think the defense, with the lack of strength in GZ’s testimony, will be able to overcome the inconsistencies in evidence to statements and then to proof point every single thing Zimmerman states.

        I just do not see a reasonable decision for the defense in the immunity hearing. I think most lawyers feel that same way. Even NeJame has maintained, since the bond was revoked, that it will be a steep, uphill climb for the defense in any immunity hearing.

      • boar_d_laze says:


        The fact finder, whether judge or jury, must judge the evidentiary value of testimony through the prism of the witness’s credibility.

        If a witness with damaged credibility tells an improbable story, it’s fair for the fact finder to to find the testimony worthless.

  54. @rnsone says:

    Mr.Leatherman, the FBI came up with inconclusive results with their voice tests while the two independent experts conclusively determined that it can’t be GZ’s voice. Does the defense have a good argument here? Is the FBI the end all experts on voice recognition? Is it possible the FBI just dropped the ball and didn’t want to make a determination due to the sensitivity of the case?

    • whonoze says:

      @ @rnsone:
      Nobody has a good argument here so far, as none of the ‘experts’ did a complete proper scientific work-up. No the FBI is not the end all of voice recognition experts. I’ve been told the NSA is, but they’re not going to let out their methods for national security reasons. I think it’s highly likely the FBI did a quickly evaluation that proved less that firmly conclusive, so they declined to go farther not wanting to go out on a limb in a sensitive case. They didn’t ‘show their work,’ didn’t explain what methodology they employed in attempting a comparison, which makes me wonder how hard they tried. The Feds have tea-party Congress-people voting on their budget, after all.

      The two independent ‘experts’ engaged by the Sentinel only did ‘good-enough-for-news-story, not-good-enough-for-court’ evaluations. Of the two, Ed Primeau is IMNSHO an utter clown. He doesn’t have a method, at least not one he can explain, other than his supposedly trained ‘expert’ ear. Tom Owen at least has a method he can explain, based on spectragraphic analysis, which can be replicated by another researcher, and should yield the same results, establishing its reliability though not necessarily its validity. To establish validity, he would need to add proper ‘controls,’ rather than just compare ‘A’ to ‘B’. The exemplar recording could actually be useful in doing that, and I suspect that may be why the prosecution staged that audio ‘re-enactment’ — as potential material for a forensic audio expert to work with.

    • CommonSenseForChange says:

      The FBI did not rule out Trayvon Martin as the screamer. They may not have had Zimmerman’s exemplars at the time. Whether they did or not, we’ve got:

      – Two experts that rule out Zimmerman as the screamer
      – An FBI that is inconclusive (can’t verify) Zimmerman screamed
      – Trayvon Martin’s Mom identifying his voice
      – Trayvon Martin’s cousin identifying his voice
      – W18 identifying some voice of a young teen she didn’t know
      – Selma and her roommate identifying a kid screaming
      – Assorted witnesses hearing “kids” out back

      Pitted against:

      – Zimmerman’s father under oath claiming his source of reference for identifying Zimmerman as the screamer he last heard when Zimmerman was a teenager (which confirms everybody else’s claims that they heard a teenager screaming) even though Zimmerman was a fully developed man that night.

  55. Sandra E. Graham says:

    Professor: Had this case not gotten national attention, would it have been a difficult case to prove 2nd Degree Murder. With the number of eyes following this case, more money will be spent on defending GZ and prosecuting him. Both sides want to make sure every i is dotted and t crossed to ensure the trial is as fair as fair can be. But, is this the norm sans the extraordinary public circumstances.

    • Sandra~ ~ a public defender paid by the state can do as good of a job defending a client as a high profile, high paid attorney. Public defenders are well qualified lawyers. Some of them volunteer a portion of their time to work as a public defender.

      To date, Mark O’Mara said he has received zero in payment for his services. Mark started out working pro bono but when the influx of donations started to pour in, he said he would be charging Z his rate of $400 per hr. Can’t say I blame him. The way things look now Mark is back to the pro bono status.

      I predict that in the near offing, Z will be filing for indigency. He will be lucky if he gets enough in donations for living expenses and/or security expenses. JAC who issues the monies for an indigent person have a set rate on what they will pay for experts, transcripts and the like. I believe the defense expert have to live in the state of Florida.

      Z’s donations started to fall off when he went on the Hannity show. I don’t think “it was God’s plan” went over too well with the donors. JMO

    • EveryoneIsEntitledToTheirOpinion says:

      Absolutely no the legal system is so one sided it is ashame. It is not what you know it is who you know. I have very little hope in the justice system.. If seen too much injustice…

      • Trained Observer says:

        Plus, gun nuts and other fools have shifted their attention and financial support to what the NRA is calling the fight of the century. The defenendent has pretty much been written off as a lost cause by all but the most extreme racists.

  56. Let me try this again to see if it works

    O’ Mara’s motion

    Click to access amended_notice_of_objection_to_subpoena.pdf

  57. The only sounds coming from Trayvon after he was shot would have been his lungs expelling that last breath of air as the lungs collapsed. It is a long gasp. Think of a half blown up balloon when you release the air from it…

  58. Professor~~In all the interviews, jailhouse calls and while on the Hannity show, Zimmerman has a very low voice and almost speaks in monotones. I don’t think that Z could reach a high enough chord to scream. I listened to the screaming on the 911 and also listened to Z’s on the voice recognition…. like night and day. Trayvon was 17 and his voice was still changing and in between puberty and manhood… the voice doing the screaming was high pitched… Z had more bass…

    • I would think Zimmerman would exhibit short low grunts rather than high pitched screams. The screams came from the one who was staring at death down the short barrel of the K9.

    • Digger says:

      Maybe Trayvon had a hold on his balls, I sure hope so! Maybe it damaged his vocal cords with nothing left but unexpressive eyes and monotone vocals. I know it would have done that much to me. We can at least squeeze them balls out here on behalf of Trayvon if he couldn’t do it. Make Georgie squirm just thinking about it…….. Who here has strong hands? or pliars?

      • bets says:

        You don’t need especially strong hands, just lots of incentive to squeeze real hard. Someone I know was accosted and she grabbed so hard that someone else had to open her hand to let the guy go. She’s about 5’1″ and 90 lbs. He ended up in the hospital.

      • CommonSenseForChange says:

        @bets –

        And if he’s wearing a cup, go for the eyes.

    • rayvenwolf says:

      Which is why the one witness that is a teacher is probably one of the best people to answer the who was screaming debate over Trayvon’s own parents. She’s a teacher and these days she’s likely heard both adults and kids/teens scream.

      There is also the fact that humans are wired to gauge the age range of people we hear, but can’t see. When I listened to those ca911 calls before I had an opinion on things – I KNEW it was Trayvon.

      If I were on the fence there are two things that would push m towards it being Trayvon

      1. GZ’s smothering story. Doesn’t jive with what we hear.

      2. RZ Sr.’s testimony at the second bond hearing.

      • whonoze says:

        W18 taught phys ed, but I don’t remember what grade level. Do they still segregate boys and girls phys ed classes past the elementary level?

      • I have been teaching for well over 20 years, and boys that age have a tendency to squeal often, even when they are not trying to. I also have a 17 year old so who stands 6’4″ in height. As I stated above, you should hear him when he sees a bee in the house (hear him rather). He sounds girly. Men don’t usually sound girly when they scream.

      • rayvenwolf says:

        @whonoze: Depends on the school I suppose. The catholic school only had one per class per grade. Once I hit public school most of the time boys and girls did their own things, BUT many times both classes were combined for one reason or another or both classes would be using the same area.

        So even doing strictly girls PE she could still be familiar with sound of male students screaming.

  59. bets says:

    Somewhat different topic, O’Mara’s quandary. He has a client who didn’t bother to get a lawyer until after he was arrested. In the meantime, the client talks and talks and talks. And he’s still talking (jail house calls, SH, his website). His client has told so many different stories that O’M must know that some of the them have to be lies. Does he put a client on the stand who can’t help but tell lies? I suppose if GZ has never admitted anything else to O’M, then O’M is in the clear but geez lueez. And, from what I understand, he’s pro bono.

    I guess if GZ insists contrary to O’M’s advice (which I assume is contrary), then the only thing for O’M to do is watch the slo-mo train wreck, as the prof said.

    • julia says:

      I used to feel some sympathy for O’Mara and the train wreck of a client he inherited until I saw the Hannity interview. How could any competent attorney sit quietly by while their charge rambled on like a crazy person? Now I think they deserve each other.

      • bets says:

        I think if O’M had his druthers, if GZ had listened to him, that interview would not have happened.

        I would have expected O’M to jump in if Hannity had asked tough or unfair questions, but his questions were really softballs. The problem was George’s answers. O’M did answer a couple of questions at the end.

        An attorney who’s advice isn’t taken doesn’t have much choice. I wonder why O’M doesn’t bow out? There may be some rules that don’t allow it.

      • princss6 says:


        Hah! The problem is and always has been George’s answers.

        Crazy-making smh

    • heartofhearts says:

      GZ has a youtube as well thanking his supporters. Someone brought up an interesting point that if he truly feels this incident has been so divisive and he is sorry about that as well (yeah, right) why doesn’t he shut off his comments. It is a breeding ground for hate and he is control of that site. Well maybe not since he has ADD and whatever else.

      • heartofhearts says:

        I misspoke, his youtube page thanking his supporters is kind of like his gun. It isn’t his youtube, it isn’t your youtube, it is THE youtube!

    • bets says:

      So what did GZ learn in his criminal justice classes? It’s all from the cops perspective apparently. He certainly didn’t learn that he should keep his mouth shut and get a lawyer, or listen to your lawyer. He did learn though that when you get your suspect prone, you get him spread eagle, even if he’s shot. And you tell the cops that’s what you did to impress them, even if you didn’t do it.

      • EveryoneIsEntitledToTheirOpinion says:

        To show just how sick GZ is; who gave him the authority to touch or follow anyone. He is a child molester and TM could have thought he was a pedophile.

        I suspected this about GZ before learning he molested his cousin. Something wasn’t right about his mannerism. Put GZ in a cell with Sandusky.. They would make good buddies…

  60. CherokeeNative says:

    Not only could Trayvon not speak because his lungs were collapsed, but if anyone has ever had their blood pressure drop dangerously low they would understand that Trayvon was in no condition to speak. When your blood pressure drops critically low, which would have been the case with Trayvon, you loose your eye sight, your hearing goes, and you immediately begin to lose consciousness. Trayvon did not talk or do anything except react to the mortal wound he received.

    • pat deadder says:

      OMG. poor Trayvon.GZ probably heard gurgling and panicked and got on top of him to make sure he would die.I don’t believe GZ moved Treyvon’s arms either.That is just bullshit.We had to watch my brother die but at least we had doctor’s to explain things. This would be so devasting for his parents my heart goes out to them.My brother was 43 and it was my parents I felt the most sorry for.

  61. TruthBTold says:

    Justkiddin* wrote,

    “Am I the only one who has had pneumonia here?”

    Thank the Lord, no but I know how serious that condition is.

    “That alone will make you beg God to put you down. SMH”

    LMBO. It’s nonsensical the things that GZ supporters believe or claim.

    • Have had the wind knocked out of me playing soccer and don’t remember talking.

      But anyway, just for sake of argument, if I could talk after a hollow point bullet blasted through my heart and lungs, you know, and say for example I could fire off a last-minute diatribe before I died, the chances are pretty good that I would not have very nice things to say to the person who had just killed me.

      The two-doctors-speculating article goes to the suffering element, as Rachael said upthread. I cannot fathom how this is viewed as a victory.

  62. TruthBTold says:

    ks wrote,

    “I’m surprised that GZ didn’t say that TM tried to pour some out for his homies 1990′s NWA style before he passed. After all he did have some Arizona Ice Tea wihch we all know is one of the key ingredients in making lean so….”

    LMBO, I can’t. Absurdities provoke these types of responses from us. It’ s just ridiculous.

  63. Ezz-Thetic says:

    I must disagree with you Mr. Leatherman. Even though GZ’s voice samples were not recorded under duress there is still no excuse for how far off they are in pitch and duration. He didn’t even come close to approximating the chilling screams on the 911 tapes. His short staccato bursts do not compare to the long drawn out wailing on the tapes. Even he admitted that the screams didn’t sound like him. That’s because they weren’t!

    What is O’Mara going to do about that boneheaded admission? Is he gonna try to have that thrown out too? And then there are the many eye/ear witnesses that SWEAR those screams came from a kid, not a 28 year old man. Had Zimmerman known his crime was being recorded he wouldn’t have done such a half assed job of imitating Trayvon’s cries. But George, despite his abysmal academic record, always thinks he’s smarter than everyone else.

    I would argue that the jury should hear the tapes so they could also hear the earwitness accounts of what happened in real time. The screams come along with that so I doubt O’Mara can make a compelling enough argument to have the tapes excluded.

    • I do not disagree with you.

      My article describes the likely process that the lawyers and the Court will follow to reach the eventual conclusion.

      My personal opinion is the voice exemplar is admissible and any defense objections go to weight and not admissibility.

      • Ezz-Thetic says:

        Hey, wait a minute. I just thought of something. Those tapes were played during the so-called “mini trial” at Zimmerman’s second bail hearing. His father even lied on the witness stand and said that was George screaming. Isn’t it a bit too late to try to have those tapes thrown out? After all it was Mark O’Mara who wanted the tapes played. That horse has already left the barn. Wouldn’t it look pretty damming if he flip flopped and tried to squash them?

      • whonoze says:

        @ Ezz-Thetic
        No. We’re not just talking about the recording of W11s 911 call. We’re talking about a voice exemplar tape of GZ yelling ‘help’ and ‘ooh ahh’ made by the SPD under somewhat similar conditions. This recording has not been used in court. Yet.

      • EveryoneIsEntitledToTheirOpinion says:

        Professor I have a question… Why do you think Mark O’Money is trying desperately to remove the Judge Lester? Would you do something like this?

        I feel the judge was more than fair to him. The average person (African American) would not have gotten such special consideration in our court system. Judge Lester gave this murderer another bail after lying. What is MOM motive?

        Also, when you were trying cases were you allowed to pick and chose what judge you wanted over your clients cases? O’Money defense is just stupid in my opinion… Am I correct or please enlighten me…

      • edgySF says:

        “His father even lied on the witness stand and said that was George screaming. ”

        Ezz-Thetic makes a good point.

        Per the above, MOM brought in the tapes. It’s only fair that Corey get a chance to rebut Robert Zim Sr.’s claim.

      • Ezz-Thetic says:

        Okay I get it. I misunderstood. Exemplars or not I think George is toast. Unless a Zimmernut somehow gets on the jury I can’t see one juror coming to any other conclusion than those screams were Trayvon begging for his life.

      • KA says:

        To believe his narrative about the screams and the dynamics of the fight, is to also believe that Trayvon was a mean spirited person that was callous to death and suffering and had no regard for anyone else.

        That is not who he was. That is a biased view. The kid was well liked and nonviolent. The jurors will not be reading “The Conservative Treehouse” website as part of the evidence.

        They will not feel Trayvon blitzed out of his mind and became a hardened criminal with no heart in a moments notice that evening and somehow he “deserved” to die.

        The emotional dynamics of this trial will be, I think, a huge factor. This was a mother’s son who was doted on and described as a “Momma’s boy”. This is a boy that was respectful. This is a boy with no police record whatsoever. This is a boy that was not breaking any laws when he was confronted.

        I think this dynamic will disproof the outdated gangster talk GZ pushed than any “expert”…including his final moments actions.

  64. Malisha says:

    Ajamazin, you ROCK!

  65. ajamazin says:

    As to conjecture that Martin could have been “conscious” for up to 2 minutes after Zimmerman shot him:

    Unlike rabid Zimmerman supports, Trayvon could not speak out of his @ss.

  66. bets says:

    I don’t have enough information. What were the conditions for GZ’s voice exemplar? Was he just asked to say “help, help”? Was he asked to yell it the same way he said it at the time?

    If I’m asked, what did you say? I give a conversational response. “Help, help”.

    If I’m asked, what did you say and how did you say it, I say the same words but also consider tone and volume. HEEEELLLP! HEEELLLP!

    If the request of GZ was as the first example, I would exclude because it is apples and oranges.

    Could the prosecution just use the 911 call without the comparison to GZ’s voice exemplar?

    If the request of GZ was as the second example, let the jury decide.

    • whonoze says:

      @ bets
      “Was he asked to yell it the same way he said it at the time?”
      Yes. If you listen to the full exemplar tape on AxiomAmnesia (not the comparison) you’ll get a certain amount of the context.

  67. ks says:

    Another solid post. Btw, the hardcore GZ fans are in a bit of a tizzy today. I guess the Orlando Sentinel needed some clicks so they decided to goose the story by having two experts opine on TM’s state directly after the shooting. One speculated that TM could have lasted a couple of minutes after being shot and the other said several seconds.

    Of course GZ fans took this to mean that since TM didn’t “die instantly” therefore he uttered the “gansta” language attributed to him by GZ and/or kept fighting GZ which, is pretty ridiculous considering that short of being vaporized or exploding, people who suffer a fatal traumatic injury don’t “die instantly” like in the movies.

    TM was shot in the heart, both his lungs collapsed and his chest cavity was 1/3? filled with blood. TM didn’t say anything and if he tried to, he likely would’ve coughed up blood. Some of the GZ fans even tried the “well, he was shot in the heart, but only one of his lungs collapsed right away so…” which is just silly because even if that was true, he still likely couldn’t say or do anything.

    Yeah, the mortally woundded TM was STILL such a gansta spouting cliched threat but yet GZ felt comfortable enought to pat him down and “spread his arms out” and also didn’t the police arrive 1 minute or so? after the shooting and start performing CPR? Get outta here GZ fans!

    • TruthBTold says:

      ks wrote,

      “Yeah, the mortally woundded TM was STILL such a gansta spouting cliched threat but yet GZ felt comfortable enought to pat him down”

      Exactly. Not only that, GZ claimed uncertainty as to whether or not he shot TM, but ummm excuse me, if TM claimed to have said you got me or all of that crap and if he wasn’t shot and on the top, why not jump off the person and run away or something? GZ said either he fell over or he pushed TM off of him and I am sure TM wasn’t moving much, so what did GZ think happened? Maybe he thought TM was playing possum or something. He is so full of it.

      • Pooh says:

        Excellent point. GZ claims two (or three) contradictory things once again. He claims TM says, “You got me” and also claims he wasn’t sure if he shot TM. While also claiming to have aimed at TM carefully over his own hand and to have shot TM in the torso at very close range.

        Which version will the jury believe?

      • Rachael says:

        Why would he run away? He was about to be famous. The cops were on their way and he could jump up (after the face pummelling he’d received and his head banged on concrete multiple times- yeah, right) and be a hero. He could show the cops he finally bagged him one. This one didn’t get away!


        • TruthBTold says:

          Oh we know GZ needs validation and acceptance, but I meant why not TM pop up off of him and runaway if GZ claimed not to have thought to have shot him? Basically, GZ’s claims are preposterous as we all know.

      • julia says:

        Very good point TruthBTold.

    • Sandra E. Graham says:

      I really don’t think the defence will go there. The facts mentioned above would create an unbearable scene – blood-curdling screams, shot fired, Trayvon living for a couple of minutes with GZ on his back, don’t call 9-1-1, help me restrain him. GZ, right there – is a cold-blooded killer. I have thought about this all day and I can not think there is any way the defence can deal with the scream except to fight allowing it in. What category would the scream fit.

      • Xena says:

        @Sandra. You hit the proverbial nail on the head; i.e., “help me restrain him.” All along in GZ’s statements, he conveys that he was screaming for help not because he believed he was within one inch of losing his life, but rather for someone to help him restrain Trayvon. Contrary to such a statement, he painted Trayvon as a dangerous person who deserved to be killed.

  68. Pooh says:

    Since as you pointed out, GZ agreed to the comparison, and I don’t know how the defense could keep it out unless they argued that the technical or situational differences made the two recordings not comparable, in which case maybe the prosecutor could argue that it was GZ’s attempted screams themselves that were significant: he was not able to reproduce a scream that was anything like what he claims to have screamed that terrifying night when he had to kill a young boy in order to save his own life.

    This has already been said: But perhaps more significant than for a voice comparison, the acknowledged technological ability of an expert in bringing out WHAT was being screamed would surely be something the jury would need to hear.

  69. KA says:

    There is an issue with the defense claiming the scream is ZImmerman’s as it makes them explain two and maybe a third narrative that Zimmerman gave. In the first, it is abruptly ended by a scream as you have always noted. Zimmerman claims to have not known he killed Trayvon as he thought he missed therefore why would be end his screams for help at the shot when he thought he missed? Secondly the screams get louder and longer the closer to the shot yet GZ claims that Trayvon was smothering him at this time right before the shot which is now he got his hand/arm lose. How can screams get louder and longer when he is unable to breath and being smothered on his nose and mouth? Thirdly, he supposedly spoke to the neighbor at this time right before the shot and told him not to call 911 and help him. The screams show no break for conversation.

    I agree that any person of marginal reason could deduct that the person creaming is the one that was shot.

    It seems claiming the screams are Zimmerman’s brings other questions into play about the other parts of the narrative for the defense. How do they abandon one part of the story for another and still look credible?

    I think you said it when you said “where you lying then, or are you lying now?”

    • Pooh says:

      Erwin: OK. So your gun’s on your right side. Your, where were your hands then?

      Zimmerman: Trying to keep his hands, away.

      Erwin: OK. And then, you felt, what did you feel next?

      Zimmerman: His hand slide down my chest. He took, one, he had one hand on, on my mouth, and one hand on my nose. And he took one off. And that’s when he said, “You’re gonna die, motherf*er!” And I felt his hand going down my, the side of my chest. And, to be honest-

      Erwin: You felt, something like this?

      Zimmerman: Yeah.

      Erwin: OK.

      Zimmerman: And brushing. And to be honest with you, the whole time, I forgot that I had the gun.

      Erwin: Mmhmm.

      Zimmerman: But when he said that I was gonna die, and then I felt him brushing, I, it automatically clicked, that he was going for my gun.

      Erwin: OK, your hands are up here defending yourself. His hand’s going down.

      Zimmerman: Yes, sir.

      Erwin: Were both your hands on the weapon?

      Zimmerman: No, sir.

      Erwin: OK. Where was his hands, when you went to retrieve the weapon?

      Zimmerman: One hand was going towards the gun. He took it off my mouth. 

      Erwin: Right.

      Zimmerman: And I was trying to get his hand, he was suffocating me, so I was trying to get his hands off of my face.

      Erwin: Mmhmm.

      Zimmerman: So, when I felt his hand, he let go of my mouth, so I wasn’t trying to do anything again, with my right hand. So I grabbed my gun. I don’t know if he did at the same time, or, what the case was, but, I got to it first.

      Erwin: OK. And then how did you come to fire upon him from that position? Because you’re laying down, like this, OK, on your back, right?

      Zimmerman: Yes, sir.

      Erwin: And, you just bring it out of the holster and set it up like this?

      Zimmerman: Yes, sir.

      Erwin: OK. You didn’t, like, try to push it into him or anything? You just fired it, almost like, from the hip?

      Zimmerman: I think I made sure, that it wasn’t, because my hand was in the way. I made sure it was past my hand. Because his other hand was still on my face.

      Erwin: OK. So-

      Zimmerman: So I made sure [crosstalk].

      Erwin: Was he that far away? Or he’s right up on you? [Crosstalk.]

      Zimmerman: He was, he was like putting all his weight on my nose and my mouth, trying to suffocate me.

      Erwin: Unh huh.

      Zimmerman: So, he, was like creating a crevice, with his body.

      Erwin: Unh hunh.

      Zimmerman: And, then he like, when he slid to go for my gun –

      Erwin: Did he go for your gun with his left hand or your [sic] right hand?

      Zimmerman: I don’t recall. I don’t recall –

      Erwin: OK.

      Zimmerman: – which hand he used.

      Erwin: One of the hands went?

      Zimmerman: Yes, sir.

      Erwin: OK. The one that was on your mouth?

      Zimmerman: That, that’s when it clicked that I had my gun, and when he said –

      Erwin: But, the hand that was on your mouth, it went to your, he went to your – 

      Zimmerman: Yes, sir.

      • KA says:

        This is the most convoluted interview…I do not think GZ even realized he said about 3 conflicted stories in that one conversation…he will be a treat on the stand.

      • boar_d_laze says:

        Assuming for the sake of argument that one man is on top of the other, it’s worth noting that the following elements: hands to the face, struggle for the gun, Mr. Zimmerman drawing his pistol from its holster and getting enough distance to hold the gun perpendicular to Martin’s heart, ONLY make sense if Mr. Zimmerman is astride Mr. Martin and not the other away around.

        I smell reenactment.

      • KA says:

        Oh course, as seen in the testimony of the FD EMT, 45% of GZ’s face was filled with blood (especially his nose and goatee as noted) and with extensive “hand to face” action with BOTH hands by TM NO Zimmerman DNA would be detected on his fingernails, cuffs, nor sleeves of either hand/arm.

        I would like to see the defense replicate that scenario…

  70. M Onan Batterload says:

    Is this correct:

    “At the time he provided it, he did not know the terrified scream had been recorded in the background of a 911 call.”

    ??? I thought the voice exemplars were provided on or around March 22. Didn’t Serino play the relevant 911 for Zimmerman on Feb 29th?

    • M Onan Batterload says:

      Actually, Zimmerman would have had the actual 9-1-1 recording by March 22nd. It was released to the public on March 16th.

    • lynp says:

      Then Detective Serino played the 911 recording for Tracy Martin at the Sanford Police station, where on 2/28 Mr Martin said the screaming voice was not his son. That can be googled.

      • M Onan Batterload says:

        It’s not so clear-cut. Serino said:
        “I asked Mr. Martin if the voice calling for help was that of his son. Mr. Martin, clearly emotionally impacted by the recording, quietly responded ‘No.'”

        Sgt. Ciesla was also present. He said:
        “I did hear Investigator Serino ask Mr. Martin if that was his son yelling in the background. I did not hear a reply. Mr. Martin was talking very softly when I did hear him.”

        Mr. Martin said he told Serino that he didn’t know if the voice was his son’s. It’s possible that Mr. Martin answered “I don’t know,” and Serino heard only, “know.”

        In any case, Ciesla heard nothing, and the interview was not recorded.

      • edgySF says:

        Thanks, M Onana Batterload, for your thoughtful response to lynp’s seeming misrepresentation.

      • Teatime says:

        M Onan Batterload says:
        It’s not so clear-cut. Serino said:
        “I asked Mr. Martin if the voice calling for help was that of his son. Mr. Martin, clearly emotionally impacted by the recording, quietly responded ‘No.’”

        “Mr. Martin said he told Serino that he didn’t know if the voice was his son’s. It’s possible that Mr. Martin answered “I don’t know,” and Serino heard only, “know.””

        edgySF says:
        August 21, 2012 at 8:26 am
        “Thanks, M Onana Batterload, for your thoughtful response to lynp’s seeming misrepresentation.”

        The only misrepresentation is from Onana Batterload. It is quite clear-cut that Tracy Martin said no. Especially since Tracy Martin has acknowledged this. Tracy claimed to have later heard a clearer copy of the tape, which changed his mind.

        Thank you lynp for representing what happened accurately.

      • Bill Taylor says:

        according to Tracey Martin he was asked could he be CERTAIN the voice was his son’s, and he replied he could not be CERTAIN……..much different from saying no it wasnt his son.

      • KA says:

        Except GZ also said the screams did not sound like him….but maybe in your argument that is excusable….

        I believe Tracey was traumatized. Trayvon’s mom ran out of the room crying when she heard them.

        Weird, GZ’s dad didn’t even tear up to hear his son in
        pain”….his tone on the stand was very matter of fact.

        I think Sabryna’s emotional response (which has been consistent) will resonate much more….

  71. Psssst, Whonoze. You wanna try on the black robe?

    Please give us your take on whether the jury should be permitted to compare GZ’s voice exemplar to the terrified scream.

    I suppose there are techniques to enhance the voices so it’s easier to hear them.

    If I were the judge, I would be inclined to let the jury listen and compare.

    How about you?

    • DSal says:

      Nice blog. It’s really cool to see the blog owner involved.

      Is it even admissible? The feds said the comparison was inconclusive. Doesn’t that exclude the whole thing from admissibility?

      • Nope, the guy from the FBI Crime lab was referring to attempting to match Zimmerman’s voice to the voice screaming in the background of the 911 call using current technology that his lab uses.

        Regardless of his opinion, there would have to be a pretrial hearing to decide the issue. There are experts who do not agree with him and the FBI Crime Lab’s reputation has taken some significant hits in the last 10 years or so.

        One should never assume that any report coming out of that lab is unassailable.

        I’m talking about just playing the two recordings one after the other and allowing the jury to decide.

      • DSal says:


      • boar_d_laze says:

        The exemplars are admissible if the jury is allowed to make up its own mind.

        Whether or not expert opinion is allowable if another question. I don’t have enough experience with audio analysis to say to express an opinion on whether it comes in under Daubert, but my guess is that it does.

        In my opinion (mine, not the judge’s), expert testimony on this subject is not more inflammatory than probitive.

        Is it unfairly prejudicial as a matter of law if an expert uses both the exemplar and NEN because the circumstances of their recording were so different? Almost certainly not, expert may use any information of a sort relied upon by other competent experts in the field.

        I don’t share Professor Leatherman’s worries.

        The one thing I wonder about is strategy. I.e., whether or not bringing in a parade of experts for every issue invites a “battle of the experts.” That can be very confusing to the jury, and confusion is more detrimental for the prosecution than the defense.

        I don’t think an expert is can be as powerful as Sybrina Fulton when it comes to identifying the voice on the NEN tape as Mr. Martin’s. On the other hand, not only would I not worry about Robert Zimmerman Sr., testifying that the voice was the defendant’s, but would would relish the opportunity to take him on cross.

        He’s put his own credibility at issue with a version of the defendant’s story the defendant no longer embraces. That allows the examiner to ask Robert Zimmerman Sr., whether his “representations” faithfully repeated only those things his son, the defendant. told him. That’s a paradox for the defense it absolutely cannot win. And, “beyond the scope” or not, credibility is always at issue.

        So, does the prosecution want an audio expert for purposes of comparing Mr. Zimmerman’s exemplar with that on the tape? They certainly want a report. Testimony at trial is another issue.

        It’s hard to not use everything you have right away. If I were prosecuting, I think I’d use Mrs. Fulton in my case in chief on both the NEN and exemplar; and save the expert for rebuttal if necessary.

      • CommonSenseForChange says:

        @Professor Leatherman –

        “One should never assume that any report coming out of that lab is unassailable.”

        I agree. No report is unassailable. I also agree that the FBI report is not favorable to Zimmerman in that it doesn’t NOT say it isn’t Trayvon Martin screaming. The inconclusiveness is NOT favorable to the only person it was compared against — Zimmerman.

    • whonoze says:

      I think the jury should be allowed to compare the two exemplars. However this is not a ‘no-brainer.’

      As far as the technology part goes (more my area of expertise): For the defense to argue “the technological equipment used to record the scream and Zimmerman’s physical location where he provided the exemplar are not the same” they would need to establish that these specific differences in this case make a difference, which would require expert testimony. That is, it would be a travesty to exclude the recording just on the assumption that technical differences in general might influence the results. It would be like excluding all testimony in any case from witnesses who might be colorblind.

      We do not know EXACTLY how and where GZ’s ‘help, help’ exemplar was recorded, but we do know that some attempt at reproducing the technological conditions was made: a) they used a cell phone, made a 911 call to SPD, and recorded it on the SPD 911 recording system, b) they had GZ shout at a certain distance from the mic. But we don’t know if they used the same type of cell phone used by W11 (or better yet, her actual phone), and we don’t know how the acoustics of the environment in which the help exemplar was recorded. So the question becomes, could these possible differences in the recording conditions (the cell phone’s mic and amp circuitry, the acoustics) be significant enough to make one voice sound like another. That’s an empirical question, but one a lay person would not be equipped to answer. I would say the technical differences at hand here are almost certainly not enough to make such a difference.

      On the other hand, It would also be a travesty to admit the recording, denying a motion to exclude, WITHOUT some expert analysis. The argument, “This issue merely requires jurors to listen to two recordings and compare them. This is a task that people routinely perform multiple times every day without the need of an expert’s assistance.” has no merit because people do not understand the differences recording technologies make, and in those routine comparisons they make on a daily basis they very often get things wrong (including the identity of persons speaking…). Technology CAN make a difference, but whether it DOES depends on a variety of specifics, which must be evaluated in each instance.

      So, if I were the judge, unless the motion to exclude explained exactly HOW the technological differences could produce an error in terms of the probative questions at hand, I would dismiss that argument. (You do dismiss the testimony of the color-blind witness if that testimony comes down to whether the person the witness saw was wearing a red dress or a green dress…)

      The question of how stress affects the voice is a bit tougher. “George Zimmerman did not fear for his life when he provided his exemplar, so his voice was not driven by fear and could not reasonably be expected to match the scream in the background of the 911 call.” Well, that’s a big assumption, isn’t it. Sez who that a scream driven by fear could not reasonably be expected to match one that is not. It’s hardly self evident either way. I do know a little bit about voice production and the mechanics of speech, and it strikes as possible that fear MIGHT make enough difference to produce a distinctly different vocal sound (the way a cat moaning in heat seems to come from another creature entirely than it’s meow).

      However, were I the prosecutor, I would argue that the ‘fear factor’ while potentially not insignificant, still goes “to the weight that should be given to the evidence rather than to its admissibility.” That is, the defense would be able to raise that question in front of the jury, and I would expect the jury to be able to weigh the evidence properly in the light of the respective arguments. The potential probative value of the evidence far outweighs it’s prejudicial possibilities, so a jury should make the call. As a judge, then, I would accept that argument.

      Of course, I know very little about the law, and am utterly unqualified to be a judge… BUT I”LL TAKE THE POWER IF YOU GIVE IT TO ME!! HAHAHAHA!!!!

      oops… sorry… got lost in the hypothetical woods there for a moment.

      • CommonSenseForChange says:

        Here’s something I’d like you to think about if you haven’t already. A scream is at a higher pitch than one’s normal voice, yes. Zimmerman has a semi-high pitch voice. The exemplar is a perfect example of what happens when one’s normal voice changes to a scream/cry for help. That’s why the examplar sounds so ridiculously higher pitched than the screams heard on the W11 9-1-1 call.

        Trayvon’s voice was slightly deeper than Zimmerman’s based on the 7-11 with audio version of the “proof” that’s out there. The voice on the 9-1-1 call was less high pitched than Zimmerman’s normal voice and similar to slightly higher than Trayvon Martin’s normal voice if the 7-11 sample is real.

        Can you put together a sample of normal voices compared to the same voice screaming — of anybody? Can you cite studies regarding whether a voice becomes deeper or more high pitched when one screams? That’s really all a jury needs.

        Most people know this to be true without evidence. Evidence, I agree, is needed just in case some so-called expert tries to present a Sarah Palin type “pretty portrait” of deceit.

        Since I hope the jury will be made up of people that want to see “proof”, I’m hoping you’ll dig in an find some.

      • lynp says:

        Whonoze, Thaks for the information and your insightful analysis utilzying your education and experience. Learning something new everyday.

      • CommonSense, I would also like to know of any studies or facts on how an adolescent’s voice tends to reach a higher pitch than a grown man’s does. Boys’ voices around that age crack and squeal all the time, especially when they are acutely hurt or terrified. I hear that weird girly tone every time my huge offspring of 17 years sees a wasp or bee in the house. He downright sounds like a girl. Men tend to not reach such high pitches. They even sometimes go a little lower to show authority or to make their voices carry. Just anectodal on my part, not scientific.

      • whonoze says:

        “Can you cite studies regarding whether a voice becomes deeper or more high pitched when one screams? ”

        “I would also like to know of any studies or facts on how an adolescent’s voice tends to reach a higher pitch than a grown man’s does.”

        Neither of these would be true categorically. Even if studies showed some incredibly high rate of correlation, that wouldn’t prove anything about Trayvon or Zimmerman, either of whom could be exceptions to any ‘rule’.

      • CommonSenseForChange says:

        @whonoze –

        “Can you cite studies regarding whether a voice becomes deeper or more high pitched when one screams? ”

        “I would also like to know of any studies or facts on how an adolescent’s voice tends to reach a higher pitch than a grown man’s does.”

        Neither of these would be true categorically. Even if studies showed some incredibly high rate of correlation, that wouldn’t prove anything about Trayvon or Zimmerman, either of whom could be exceptions to any ‘rule’.


        To me (from a juror’s perspective), this means no, you cannot refute what I’ve heard — what I know. You cannot offer me any scientific proof that the difference heard in the exemplar goes against a juror’s first hand knowledge (hearing) and experience. This means I can rely on what I know and disregard your expertise.

        The juror can rely on the exception, sure. But without a study showing the correlation rate of *something*, where’s the proof of an exception? An exception cannot be proffered without showing proof that same is in fact an exception.

        If I hear what I hear, it’s your job to show me that my ticket was for the wrong show. Especially if its your job to assert self defense. Bring it weak if you must, but don’t sit and say you don’t have to bring it. You *must* bring something — like an expert maybe?!

      • boar_d_laze says:

        You impute powers to the court it doesn’t have to include and exclude. The court’s powers aren’t absolute and court’s seldom do anything sua sponte regarding admission of evidence.

        The court’s rulings must be consistent with the law, and if there’s opposition to admission it must come from the opposing party not from the court.

        I don’t see any major problem for the prosecution getting the exemplar admitted without an “expert” to explain it. Identifying a person by voice isn’t beyond ordinary experience and Sybrina Fulton would do just fine.

        State evidence codes are usually similar to, but are not the same as the FRE. Florida is a Frye and not a Daubert jurisdiction. That means that Florida courts have a higher standard for expert opinion than a federal courts.

        If the tests you propose aren’t well tested and broadly adopted by the “audiology” community, expert opinion formed on their basis won’t be admitted; but if they are, they will.

      • whonoze says:

        @ boar
        If you’re posting downthread please use an @ tag so we know who you’re responding to.

        “You impute powers to the court it doesn’t have to include and exclude. ”

        I’m not imputing any powers to the court. Prof. Fred asked me what I would do if I were the judge. I answered that from my own perspective, which is as a media practitioner and scholar, not a jurist. I don’t care what courts ‘do’ on a regular basis (look up the concept of ‘reification.’) I care about what is right.

        Ypu completely miss my point by saying “Identifying a person by voice isn’t beyond ordinary experience and Sybrina Fulton would do just fine.” Offering an example that makes no reference at all to the role of technological mediation. As I said, the ability to correctly determine the effects of technological mediation on perception — which may be insignificant or may be monumental, on an instance by instance basis — is UTTERLY beyond ordinary experience. If you thin it isn’t, you just don’t know fuckall about audio and video.

  72. DSal says:

    Awesome thread.

    Looks like the Orlando Sentinel has beat this one to the punch and already found people to say that Trayvon Martin could still speak.

    George Zimmerman may have shot Trayvon Martin in the heart, but that didn’t kill him instantly.

    The 17-year-old survived for several minutes, according to two experts who reviewed Trayvon’s autopsy for the Orlando Sentinel.

    “You’re talking about minutes, at least, for him to survive,” said Dr. William Anderson, a forensic specialist and former deputy medical examiner for Orange and Osceola counties. “I think he would have been conscious … for a little time, anyway.”

    • Actually there is a difference between being conscious and being able to speak. A person shot in the heart may be conscious briefly, but they are not going to be able to speak, if both lungs are collapsed and they cannot exhale any air past their vocal cords.

      The Zimmerman supporters are going to be in for a terrible shock when this evidence is admitted at trial because it is terribly damaging to his case.

      It helps to prove the depraved-mind element that the prosecution has to prove beyond a reasonable doubt because it establishes that TM suffered while GZ did nothing to try and save his life by calling 911 or attempting to administer CPR.

      He just walked around and scratched his head.

      • DSal says:

        Were both lungs collapsed immediately?

      • ks says:

        Ah yes, the 4 armed mutant ninja gansta’ Superman TM meme is back!

        Why he can be shot directly in the heart by a 9mm hollow point bullet from point blank range and to play along with the meme, with ONLY one of his lungs collapsed and be a mere minute or so away from having CPR performed on him but yet still be all gangsta’! gangsta’!

        I’m surprised that GZ didn’t say that TM tried to pour some out for his homies 1990’s NWA style before he passed. After all he did have some Arizona Ice Tea wihch we all know is one of the key ingredients in making lean so….

      • Justkiddin* says:

        Breaking News TM shot in heart and last minutes spent shimming with Z. His lungs were collapsed. Come on people use common sense. Lungs = air! Am I the only one who has had pneumonia here? That alone will make you beg God to put you down. SMH

      • Rachael says:

        DSal says:

        August 20, 2012 at 3:44 pm

        Were both lungs collapsed immediately?

        DSal, what does it matter? He probably would not be able to take in air due to fluid displacement so the air that would be pushed out would be gurgling sounds, not actual talking. And if they didn’t and he still “lived” for a minute or two, he drowned in his own blood. Do you think that would be a pretty and comfortable way to die?

        Why oh why do the Zimmerman people think this is a good thing, that he suffered a few minutes longer? How can they hate that much? If this is true, it really makes me sad. It would have been so much better had it be an instantanous painless death.

        If he did say anything, I sure hope it was…okay. I’m getting out of hand here.

        But maybe that would be just one more thing to tell a jury – they need to know that it was not an instant painless death, that he suffered needlessly for a minute or two longer at the hands of GZ.

      • Rachael says:

        Oh wow Professor – When you said that GZ did nothing to try and save his life by calling 911 or attempting to administer CPR – it just made me realize. Wasn’t there a male witness that GZ asked to help him “restrain” the body and they guy said he was going to call 911 and GZ told him not to – because he had already called them and they were on the way? I mean his call was BEFORE he shot him so he had no idea how long it would be before they would get there, though I’m sure he figured they would be there soon because people would call after hearing the gunshot – but someone said they were going to call 911 and he told them NOT to!!! OMG

        Okay, I can see being shook up after just shooting someone, but when someone said they were going to call 911, that should have brought him around enough to say “yes, of course.”

        Maybe I’m reading too much into it, but I definitely see depraved mind there – hoping he would die before the police came.

        I mean after all, he was only doing his civic duty. If Trayvon died, they would only have to hear 1 side of the story, so we should be grateful to him for making less work for the police.

        I read some statistic that people are more likely to get off on SYG/self defense if they kill the person than if they don’t.

      • rayvenwolf says:

        @Rachel: No you aren’t reading too much into it. GZ “restraining” Trayvon after he was shot(I don’t believe for a second he didn’t know Trayvon was shot), telling the witness to come help etc, all show just how little GZ truly cared about shooting someone or was even remotely moved by it.

      • Sandra E. Graham says:

        While it MAY be true that Trayvon was alive for a couple of minutes, more than GZ walking away, he got on Trayvons back and spead his arms out to restrain him. Any life left in Trayvon was extinguished by the weight of GZ sitting on top of him.

      • edgySF says:

        “it establishes that TM suffered while GZ did nothing to try and save his life by calling 911 or attempting to administer CPR.”

        Good point!!!!

      • edgySF says:

        Prof, what do you think of the Orlando Sentinel reporter’s tweet:

        “Dr.Anderson: Lungs deflate slowly following a gunshot wound and Trayvon could have spoken for a few seconds or a bit longer.”


      • GrannyStandingforTruth says:

        “Many want to believe Trayvon a hardened thuggish gang member that would not be upset over his own “deserved” death. This is all this argument even amounts to.”

        Exactly! They do not care that this child was walking along minding his own business and returning from the store. They do not care that he only weighed 158 pounds, which is lightweight for a male and unarmed compared to Zimmerman’s 207 pounds and Tec9. Nope! In their narrow-minds they’ve made a child who only made seventeen a couple of weeks before the shooting out of Superman and a bonafide adult male armed with a can of ice tea and skittles. I guess in their mind the skittles gave him super powers liken to Popeye eating spinach, huh?

        But T was a child, a minor, a decent, and smart kid at that. I don’t care how they try to spin that one, height does not make a child out of a grown man. But well, you know, they are obsessed and blinded by those dangerous black male stereotypes because they’ve been taught throughout life that it’s true,so don’t expect them to see through GZ’s lies.

        Heaven forbid the idea that this young black male could be a decent, innocent kid, nonviolent, and walking along minding his own business. Every black male in America is suspect, no good, a thug, gangsta, violent, and dangerous and they cannot see them as being anything but that! Black males are supposed to be confined, controlled, and freedom and the constitution does not apply to them. Yep!

        Jesus, I feel like I’m living in the dark ages–Jim Crow because of the attitude of some who believe that Trayvon had no rights and he was suppose to submit to GZ, a stranger at night, who had no authority whatsoever as if he was walking while black without a pass from Massa and GZ is a slave patroller keeping those blacks in line. Smh!

        Just think from the time our children were able to walk and talk, we taught them not to talk to strangers. With all the bad stuff happening to children these days, sometimes it’s not good for them to talk to people in positions that we should be able to trust that involve children because there are so many people that have twisted and sick minds.

        BTW, I do not hate Zimmerman, but I’ve lived long enough and experienced enough in life to see through his flimsy lies. I know that one and one is two, but it can also be eleven!

    • TruthBTold says:

      Why the lung issue wasn’t addressed is beyond me. Very questionable reporting considering GZ’ claims of TM talking after being shot. Hmmm……

      • @rnsone says:

        Yes,I wondered why the Orlando Sentinental didn’t bother asking the experts about TM being able to talk after suffering such massive internal damages..I guess they knew what the answer was going to be.And they want to be”fair and balanced” and not stack the cards against GZ.Damn it sucks when the facts are biased against GZ and his many stories.

      • princss6 says:

        They didn’t need a medical conclusion….according to George, he did…that is all OS needed.

        I would advise people to do some research on Dr. Manion especially related to his testifying as an expert in a Taser case.

    • ks says:

      Awesome post DSal.

      Actually, you’re wrong. Neither of the experts quoted said that TM could still speak. In fact the OS didn’t even ask the experts that question and considering the autopsy report stated TM’s lungs collpased it’s not a surprise why.

      You do realize that most people who suffer fatal traumatic injuries don’t die instantly and “survive” (e.g. blood pumping, brain function, etc.) for a bit before they die, right?
      You do realize that surviving doesn’t mean conscious, right?
      You do realize that conscious doesn’t mean speaking, right?

      You GZ fans grasp at any straw.

      • ks says:

        There you go what? You do realize that remained conscious means was technically still alive for few moments in terms of bodily functions, right? It doesn’t mean that TM was able to take voluntary action or speak. Duh.

      • PYorck says:


        I am not sure what your point is. Except for certain specific brain injuries people do not die literally instantly. It is just not how it works. However that is not a secret. Of course Trayvon was not dead the second he was shot. The problem is that the OS article tries to create the impression that Trayvon somehow survived surprisingly long. Actually he had unusually severe injuires for someone who had been shot once and died pretty quickly. That he was technically alive and possibly conscious for a while is to be expected and does not change anything.

        Whether Trayvon could speak is a separate question and how long he was alive or conscious was never really the limiting factor. It is about his ability to maintain overpressure (or in a pinch underpressure) in his lungs. Having your lungs ripped apart by bullet fragments and a hole in your chest do not help with that, to put it mildly.

      • ks says:

        “Yeah, except they both said he was likely conscious for some period of time after that. Next will come the experts stating it was indeed possible that TM could have vocalized.”

        You really don’t know what conscious means in the way they were referring to it do you? The police got there a minute after GZ shot TM and he was unresponsive and GZ himself felt comfortable enough to frisk TM after shooting him but go ahead and play on the margins if you want to.

        Good luck with those next round of experts especially since the ones you are focusing on didn’t even dare go there. Even in their cursory review they knew that such a claim would be very suspect.

        Like I said grasping at straws.

      • ks says:

        No Pliaja, It’s not “a bad day for us”. Whatever that’s supposed to mean. The OS can do their thing but, I’ll stick with the actual autopsy report. As I said below, if the defense wants to call that OS guy, they should go for it and play your semantic game.

        Given the extent of TM’s injuries and how quickly he fully expired, it’s very unlikely he said anything but hey I get that GZ’s in a desperate postion so “coulda, maybe, possibly” is all they have. I certainly hope they do as that would be a terrible strategy.

        Btw, in one of your earlier posts you stated that TM was relentlessly attacking GZ. Please explain.

      • Animaljunkie says:

        In reply to Pliaja comments on August 21, 2012 at 9:53 am:

        I find it amusing that you cut and pasted my question to Rene Stutzman and her subsequent reply, but did not stipulate my whole argument, therefore I supply MY tweets below:

        Animaljunkie ‏@Animaljunkie
        I don’t know @renestutzman, I have a distinct impression that you’re permitting your opinion to overrule your professional objectivity.

        Animaljunkie ‏@Animaljunkie
        @princss6 @ZimmermanLies @renestutzman If anyone can speak in such excruciating pain, I’d be VERY surprised.

        Animaljunkie ‏@Animaljunkie
        @coreshift @renestutzman I’m sure the coroner’s report stipulated both lungs collapsed BTW

        Animaljunkie ‏@Animaljunkie
        @coreshift @stobdob @renestutzman Are you saying there is NO pain in having your heart torn assunder & your lungs collapsing?

        Animaljunkie ‏@Animaljunkie
        @coreshift @stobdob @renestutzman A blow to the solar plexus does the same in preventing speech & that’s not even fatal!

        Animaljunkie ‏@Animaljunkie
        @coreshift @stobdob @renestutzman There’s a funny element about being shot, it’s called ACUTE & EXTREME pain, ever heard of it?

        Animaljunkie ‏@Animaljunkie
        @coreshift @stobdob @renestutzman It wasnt’ a little whole in the heart, it TORE through his chest, heart & lung & indirectly collapsing his other lung!

        Animaljunkie ‏@Animaljunkie
        @coreshift @stobdob @renestutzman You’re VERY gullible, aren’t you! Notice neither ‘specialists’ factored in PAIN

        Animaljunkie ‏@Animaljunkie
        @coreshift Why did @renestutzman only ask Dr Anderson’s opinion AFTER I asked the question and NOT Dr Manion who was more conservative?

        Animaljunkie ‏@Animaljunkie
        @coreshift I don’t like accusing anyone of bias, but undoubtedly @renestutzman is!

    • Rachael says:

      Sorry, DSal, but that is grasping at straws. Just because he may have survived a few minutes, there is no way to know if he was conscious or his movements purposeful. But even if he was conscious, I personally do not think he would be in any shape to say anything, either due to anatomic inability or shock. But even if he were to utter some kind of sound or even “say” anything, what would be the significance of that?

      It ain’t like in the movies where they sit up, open their eyes say, “Tell my mama I love her” then fall back down with their eyes closed.

      Maybe I am missing something, but I just do not see what the significance is that he was still alive because it wasn’t for long and only shows (to me at least) that his death was prolonged even if by only 2 minutes in which he must have suffered.

      Why do the Zimmerman people think this is such good news?

      • TruthBTold says:

        Rachael wrote,

        “It ain’t like in the movies where they sit up, open their eyes say, “Tell my mama I love her” then fall back down with their eyes closed.”

        LOL. Girl, I tell ya.

      • ks says:


        The prosecution and the defense will both ignore the OS story but GZ fans think this means TM didn’t “die instantly” which, for some strange reason, they take to mean being concious then to speaking and of course that means GZ is not lying about what TM supposedly said.

        Yeah, it doean’t make any sense but given the credibility hits their man GZ has they’ve taken recently, I’m not surprised they are reaching for anything especially if the “Dr. Phil” rumors are true.

      • Rachael says:

        KS – the Dr. Phil rumors are sort of true. Apparently Mark Osterman is supposed to be on at some point and Dr. Phil is looking for people in the LA area to give input. He has several ads looking for input. On one:

        Do you think George Zimmerman did the right thing and is innocent?

        Would you have some the same thing if you were in his shoes?

        Do you think George Zimmerman has been unfairly portrayed in the media?

        Do you think George Zimmerman is guilty and should pay for his crime?

        Do you believe George Zimmerman killed because of race?

        If you have a strong opinion on George Zimmerman and want to speak out on our show, please respond below

        Then there is this one that hmmmm no longer says LA only:

        Can you relate to George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin?

        Did you or someone you know act in self-defense, but got punished?

        Did you or someone you know do the right thing even though everyone else thinks it was wrong?

        Are you being harassed or judged for your actions?

        Do you know someone who was killed or injured for no good reason?

        If you can relate to any of these statements and want to have your story heard on our show, apply below!

        You know, this is so danged disgusting. “They” keep talking about this shouldn’t be tried by the media then they put it all out there. Then they cry that he can’t get a fair trial. WTF??!!!

        It is just insane. So Trayvon and his family will be trashed yet again on national TV while Zimmerman tells us (by way of proxy) that this was all “God’s plan.”

        I could just puke.

        Forgive me. I’m tired. Finals week. Gonna take a nap. Maybe my attitude and language will be better when I wake up.

      • ks says:


        Thanks for the Dr. Phil interview. I know it can drive one crazy but given past experience, I’m sure “Team GZ” will find a way to mess up.

      • ks says:


        Um, there is no “validation” for you GZ fans in the OS article. I notice you didn’t try to rebut any of the statements made here and just stuck to the neener neerner stuff. And of course it escaped your attention that the OS didn’t ask their experts about the possibility of TM saying anything after being shot. That’s likely because they and their experts knew that autopsy report would put any such claim that he could have utter the dated gangsta talk ridiculous.

        What sad and funny is that folks like you interpret gloom onto the OS article and ignored the larger meaning of the forensics just to prop up another one of GZ’s lies.

        Yeah I’m sure the defense is going to come up with and expert who unlike the OS ones will claim that TM could have, might have, possibly said something which of course you folks will take to mean that GZ was telling the truth about what was said.

        Oh wait let me get back to reality…Not!

      • Teatime says:

        ks says:
        “And of course it escaped your attention that the OS didn’t ask their experts about the possibility of TM saying anything after being shot.”

        It doesn’t appear to have escaped his attention at all.

        Pliaja said:
        “I expect that if/when an expert states that it certainly was possible for TM to have vocalized words, that there will be the same types of reactions.”

        ks says:
        “That’s likely because they and their experts knew that autopsy report would put any such claim that he could have utter the dated gangsta talk ridiculous.”

        Looks like that turned out not to be the case after all. (Pliaja seemed to accurately predict the reactions.)

        Why not just admit that TM could have done the things GZ said he did. I don’t understand the stubbornness. It doesn’t reflect well on your side.

      • ks says:


        You should read more carefully. He/she did made a prediction and then crowed as if she won a big point when, if fact, at most it was a very narrow point. After prodding, the OS asked ONE of their experts (the one who offered the least conservative initial opinion) and even he only speculated that it was “possible the TM could have spoken for a few seconds”.

        I’m sure if this issue is actually raised in court and the prosceution presents their experts, and guess who?, the coroner who actually preformed the autopsy on TM!, who will likely give a different opinion, I’m sure you GZ fans will reconsider your positions.

        Uh huh.

    • Xena says:

      It matters not whether Trayvon could talk after being shot because the screams for help stopped with the gunshot. That in fact, it is my opinion that Trayvon was shot because he screamed for help and those screams brought attention to what was happening.

      • edgySF says:

        I agree.

        IMO, GZ is the one who tried to smother TM. Because GZ did NOT want “help.” He proved that when he disobeyed dispatch. He didn’t do as they instructed, because he did not really want their help. If he wanted help, he would have cooperated with the authorities. And we all know that 311 are official representatives of the police department.

  73. Digger says:

    If I am correct Professor, you are saying we do not need to identify the scream as Trayvon, just whether IT IS or NOT Zimmerman screaming. Very interesting!

    • Rachael says:

      Makes sense to me. If it is not Zimmerman, who else could it be? And even then, just the possibility that it “could” be Trayvon would be enough to (at least IMO) for reasonable doubt. That along with everything else would push it beyond a reasonable doubt for me – and, in fact, already has.

    • Malisha says:

      I would say all that is needed is to show that the voice is not Zimmerman’s, because there goes his credibility if it is NOT him.

      He claims that HE SCREAMED but all that Trayvon Martin did was curse at him and say, “You got me” or “you got it,” and once, “ow ow.”

    • Dave says:

      Whether the screamer was Trayvon, the kid with the dog, or some unknown person, Zimmerman is shown to be a liar (again) and his claim that he sought help before killing Trayvon goes up in smoke.

  74. Justkiddin* says:

    I think for it to be completely fair MOM should hand Mr. Martin (Trayvon’s father) a kel tec 9 he can then shove it in Z’s face and then let the recording begin. If they sound alike Z told the truth for once, if not well then everyone will know what we have been saying is the truth, it is Trayvon on the 911 calls.
    The scene has to be set, Z has got to feel that fear that he felt in February. jmo of course

    • Justkiddin* says:

      Professor could you do me 1 little favor? STOP helping the defense. You are going to kill me dead. I am positive they read here. They are going to take your advice! 😦

      • rayvenwolf says:

        If the defense hadn’t already considered this, GZ needs more help than we know.

      • EveryoneIsEntitledToTheirOpinion says:

        I was thinking the same thing… I wish GZ would just go to his jail cell already… Thats in God’s Plan…

      • LJ says:

        Justkiddinn – I was thinking the same thing! I recently read that MOM has two interns working full-time and their only job is to read the blogs and report their findings.

      • princss6 says:

        Here is a report for the interns: GZ is screwed.

      • Rachael says:

        It is just as possible the prosecution is doing the same.

      • 2dogsonly says:

        We know you’re smart so please stop helping the defense. And btw, GZ’s attorneys aren’t Gerry Spenser or your caliber so please stop assisting them.

        We just don’t need to take the chance…and I have seen some highly rated attorneys, maybe due to burnout, neglect to competently represent their client. In fact, I think it may have been you who pointed out MOM neglected to include (sorry can’t remember) something ? in his recusal motion and that was a huge mistake.

        Would you consider deleting it?

    • Laketree says:

      Is it not true TM father admitted that it was not his son on this audio calling for help? If so, could he be a defense witness?

      • TaTa_U says:

        When TM father listened to that audio, he had just been told that his son was dead and was then ask to listen to an audio of his childs death. The first stage of greif is… DENIAL. I believe that when Tracy Martin was sitting at Serino’s desk listening to his child being tortured and screaming in fear.. he refused to accept that was how his child and shook his head and said no as he entered the first stage of grief.

        • He also was asked if he was 100% positive that Trayvon was screaming.

          Under the circumstances, I think the question was unfair and Serino may have intentionally phrased it that way to maximize the possibility that Trayvon’s dad would say “No.”

          For example, the night before, he was telling witnesses at the scene that they were wrong, if they had identified Trayvon as the person screaming.

        • Patricia says:

          TaTa –

          YOU KNOW Trayvon’s father was asked if he was CERTAIN.

          So I have a question for you: “How do you explain George Zimmerman’s shot, elbow-to-ground, that FAILED to create a diagonal trajectory?”

          If that stumps you, “How could Zimmerman’s shot create the trajectory that FORENSIC EVIDENCE PROVES, if Zimmerman’s elbow was on the ground?”

          And if that’s too tough, how about “How did Zimmerman get that itty-bitty gun OUT FROM UNDER HIS ASS if, in fact, Trayvon Martin was on top of him?”

          If that overwhelms you, Ta Ta, tell me “How could Zimmerman do all his SCREAMING AND WAILING THAT HE SAID HE DID if Trayvon Martin supposedly was choking and suffocating him, with hands on Zimmerman’s nose and mouth?”

          TA TA, TaTa!

      • TaTa_U says:

        My apologies for the duplicate posted… we need an edit button.
        Last line should read = he refused to accept that was his child and shook his head and said no as he entered the first stage of grief

      • TaTa_U says:

        @ Patricia … I believe we share the same position… I believe it is in fact Trayvon Martin screaming. Serino, choose what I believe a very inappropriate time to play the 911 recorded screams… Tracy Martin was distressed and over whelmed with what he most likely did not realize was the first stage of grief… and the realization that his son was in fact dead and had died a horrible death in fear.
        Let me just say… I am just a layman that discovered this wonderful world the professor has created here and I come to learn. So I will not post much… and as far as the trajectory of that bullet, I have no proof, but I do not believe GZ shot Trayvon, based on GZ only having a speck GSR on the back of one shoulder and Trayvon was definitely not shot while straddling GZ or anyone else for that matter. I believe Trayvon was either standing and pulling away or on his knees and pulling away.
        Like I said, I come here to learn… If anyone else can help me prove this theory it is greatly appreciated.

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