The only minority to sit on the jury in the Trayvon Martin murder trial says she’s received death threats, and that George Zimmerman’s “not guilty” verdict continues to haunt her.
Juror B29, who only identifies herself by her first name Maddy, recently spoke with Dr. Phil, in which she reveals her life hasn’t been the same since becoming the only juror to come out publicly.
“I had a threat where someone expressed to me that I was going to feel the same hurt that Trayvon Martin’s mother feels,” Maddy said.
She also revealed that she had to move from her Florida home to live with a friend, where eight people between their families live in a one-bedroom apartment.
“It’s not fair. I shouldn’t get blamed for someone else's actions,” she said.
Maddy, who is Puerto Rican, maintains that she believed Zimmerman was guilty, but that she felt pressure to vote not guilty because of the instructions that were given to the jury based on the law.
“I’m a godly person. If you kill somebody you’re guilty,” she said. “It’s sad to say that because of a law that was written and was described to me, that I had to follow this law against my will. In my heart, I knew that he was guilty, but I couldn’t use my heart...I had to use the law.”
She also revealed that the other jurors, which included all White mothers, made her feel uncomfortable and even made fun of how she spoke.
“Every time I would say something like Ramen noodles, she’d say ‘you don’t know how to say that right’...I felt like we were in high school,” she said. “As of the time of me being there for three weeks I could tell that I was different - mentality, physically and emotionally. A lot of them didn’t understand where I was coming from. They didn’t take the time to get to know [me]. I always felt this discomfort that I wasn’t in the right place. They didn’t make me feel too comfortable.”
Maddy confirmed that the trial’s key witness, Martin’s friend Rachel Jeantel, was dismissed by the jurors as unreliable.
“The first day they were stating that they couldn’t understand her like she was from another planet. I understood everything she was saying.” she said.
Martin’s parents and the Trayvon Martin Foundation recently commemorated the memory of the slain teenager during the two-year anniversary of his death. His murder trial quickly caused a division in the country on the issue of race, racial profiling and gun laws, with a string of similar cases - like the Jordan Davis murder trial - being compared to the high-profile case.
What do you think? Do you believe Juror B29 was forced into a “not guilty” verdict? Could she have fought harder?