George Zimmerman trial: Witness Rachel Jeantel

Trayvon Martin's friend talks about his last phone call

SANFORD, Fla. - The teenager who was the last to talk to Trayvon Martin before George Zimmerman killed him was back on the stand Thursday.

Defense attorney Don West used the words "lies" and  "liar" often during cross examination. The court reporter had trouble understanding Rachel Jeantel, who is of Haitian and Dominican Republic descent. West and a juror said they had trouble hearing her.

"You lied because you wanted to give a plausible answer to Mrs. [Sybrina] Fulton, as to why you didn't go to the wake," West said. "You decided to lie about going to the hospital rather than say something that may be painful."

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West was referring to Jeantel's absence at Trayvon's wake and funeral, because she "didn't want to see the body." In an attempt to not hurt any one's feelings during her deposition, she said, she lied about the reason for her absence.

The 19-year-old Miami Norland Senior High student, known as Diamond or Dee Dee, said she was not Trayvon's girlfriend. The two met in elementary school and had rekindled their friendship on her birthday, Feb. 1st.

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Prosecutor Bernie de la Rionda asked Jeantel to describe what she heard while on the phone with Trayvon Feb. 26, 2012. She said Trayvon "was going to the store for his future step-brother named Chad."

Chad, 15, was the first witness Monday. He stayed home alone playing video games and said he asked Trayvon to bring him Skittles.

"It was about to rain when he was going" to 7-Eleven, said Jeantel. They talked about the All-Star game. And when he was done with his purchase, it was raining. Trayvon took a shortcut on his way back home, she said.

Their conversation took a quick turn when he told her "a man was watching him." When she asked him for a description of the man, she said Trayvon said he looked like a "creepy ass cracker."

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"He told me he is almost there, so as he is walking he is just complaining ‘the man is still following me'."

The call that had begun at 6:54 p.m. got cut off about 7:11 p.m. when Trayvon started running. He called her back 20 seconds later. 

Jeantel said Trayvon was "back in the area that his daddy fiancee house is" and thought he had lost him.

"And then a second later, Trayvon said 'Oh! Sh--! The nig-- is behind me," Jeantel said.

She told him to "RUN!" Trayvon ran. The man caught up to him. She said she "heard a hard breathing man." Then she overheard a short exchange. 

Trayvon: "Why are you following me for?"  

The man: "What are you doing around here?"

Jeantel said she heard the sound of wet grass and Trayvon saying "get off, get off, get off." The phone shut off at 7:15 p.m.

She said she thought it was a fight.

"I had thought he was by his daddy's house, so somebody would come help him," she said.

She went to school the next day. A day later Jeantel heard rumors that Trayvon had died. She found out he was dead through a friend's text message.  She said she didn't tell police she was the last one to talk to him because she figured police would contact her like detectives in the reality TV crime drama The First 48 do.

When West confronted her about inconsistencies in prior statements, she told him that it was not easy to deal with being the last person, who talked to Trayvon.

Judge Debra Nelson allowed Jeantel to travel back to her home in Miami Gardens, but it's likely that jurors will hear from her again.

"There is a possibility that you may be called to come back and testify," judge said.

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