Star Witness Rachel Jeantel Speaks Out for First Time After Trial on CNN

Witness Rachel Jeantel continues her testimony during George Zimmerman’s trial in Seminole circuit court in Sanford, Fla. Thursday, June 27, 2013. Credit: AP

The prosecution’s “star-witness” in the George Zimmerman murder trial, Rachel Jeantel, on Monday made her first public appearance since testifying earlier this month about the death of Trayvon Martin. She claimed the jury’s verdict was “racial” and referred to the mostly white jury as “old school.”

Jeantel made a number of surprising statements while talking to CNN’s Piers Morgan about the verdict, black culture, the n-word and her relationship with Martin.

Jeantel said she was “disappointed, upset and angry” with the jury’s not guilty verdict. She called the decision “just B.S.”

The once star witness later also addressed the “creepy ass cracker” phrase that Martin allegedly used to describe Zimmerman the night he was shot. Jeantel explained that the word is actually spelled “cracka,” which is different apparently.

“Let’s talk about creepy ass cracker,” Morgan said. “People have said that that is a phrase used by black people, cracker, to describe a white person, is that true?”

“No,” Jeantel replied.

“How do you spell it first of all,” an apparently curious Morgan asked. It was determined the word is spelled “cracka.”

Jeantel said the word “cracka” is used to describe someone who “acts like they are police” or a “security guard.”

She put the blame on Zimmerman for not calmly approaching Martin and asking him what he was doing (though it is unclear who first approached the other person). Jeantel said her friend would have politely explained what he was doing and he would still be alive today.

Jeantel said she believes the jury’s verdict was racially motivated. “They’re white,” she said. “Well, one Hispanic.” She also referred to the jurors as “old school” and unable to relate to her generation.

If Martin was white and was wearing a hoodie, nothing would have happened, she argued, adding that she “had a feeling it was going to be not guilty” mostly because of the way the testimony was presented.

CNN provides a portion of her interview below:

Jeantel also gave a lesson on the use of the n-word during her interview on CNN. She said “n***a,” spelled with an “a,” can be used to describe any male regardless of race. The other one, “ni**er,” is the offensive one. CNN refused to redact (bleep) the use of any variation of the word:

She said she wishes she would have used the n-word during her testimony.

Jeantel defended her friend’s character, saying she never saw Martin act “aggressive” or lose his temper. She also dismissed the fact that Martin had marijuana in his system the night he was shot.

“Weed don’t make him go crazy, it just makes him go hungry,” she said.

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