return at 9 a.m. Thursday for more, when West is scheduled to continue his cross-examination. When West told the judge he expects that to last about two more hours, Jeantel blurted out, "What?"
ANALYSIS: The defense had a good day Wednesday. Period. And, if the State’s witness Rachel "Diamond" Jeantel continues to unravel under the cross-examination by Zimmerman defense counsel Donald R. West, Esq. today, one can argue that the damage done to the State’s case against George Zimmerman may have irreparable damage. She was combative and defiant, and as the old folks in East. St. Louis, Illinois where I grew up used to say, “She acted ugly.” This is not my criticism of the teen, who is likely still grieving the loss of her friend and coping with the trauma of being so closely tied to his death, but my professional opinion as an attorney. Indeed, one could argue that a jury may say “Well, if the victim ran around and associated with people like this woman (Jeantel) then the victim may have not been the person that the State of Florida has led us to believe.” As far as the prosecution and their preparation of Jeantel for testimony, I suspect they may have done all that they can do. I have never heard a witness exclaim to a court room “I ain’t coming back tomorrow” or something to that effect.
Keep in mind constitutionally it is the burden of the state to prove its case. It is not the burden of the defense to prove its innocence. The defense has to prove nothing and is not required to put on any evidence at all. That is the cornerstone of the U.S. Constitution. Make sure you always understand that fact (and how damning it may be for those who wish to see Zimmerman punished for killing Trayvon Martin).
A licensed attorney in Orlando, Florida, Joseph Haynes Davis is also a broadcaster with over 30 years of broadcast media experience. He is also the legal analyst for the State of Florida v. Zimmerman trial for the “Doug Banks Show,” the Andre Michael Eggelletion Show and several other national radio programs. Follow him on Twitter: @sivadmedia and @con_speaking and check out his website and political blog.