The George Zimmerman Trial: Testimony of Selene Bahadoor (June 25, 2013)

Bahadoor testified that she saw the scuffle outside her home and heard  a gun shot. (Getty images)


Excerpts from cross-examination:

MARK O`MARA, DEFENSE ATTORNEY: So you`re at the kitchen cooking, right? And you hear some noise. Is that the first thing that causes you to have some attention to what was going on out there on February 26, 2012?


O`MARA: OK. Nobody else was there with you, right? Your sister was in the -- in the apartment but not right there in the kitchen with you, right?


O`MARA: Nor was your niece? She was upstairs with a friend?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

O`MARA: As we talk about your sister, she never saw or heard anything about this, did she?

BAHADOOR: I don`t know what she saw.

O`MARA: Well, you were there, right? Was she?

BAHADOOR: She was upstairs. I was downstairs.

O`MARA: She would not have seen anything from the perspective that you had seen it, correct? She didn`t see it from downstairs at least, right?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

O`MARA: So that, were she to come in and say that she saw anything about this event from the downstairs area, that would not be true?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

O`MARA: Did she tell you that she duplicated your story as to what happened out there that night?

BAHADOOR: What do you mean?

O`MARA: When you talked to her, as you said you did, did your sister tell you that she didn`t see anything but was going to say that she did?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Object at this point as to hearsay, as to what she told her.


O`MARA: So you`re talking now about cooking, and you hear a noise. What - - tell me the noise again.

BAHADOOR: It sounded like "no" or "uhhh" or something -- something along that line.

O`MARA: OK. And what did you do in response to that?

BAHADOOR: Looked out the window.

O`MARA: And you...

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Could you repeat your answer?

BAHADOOR: Looked out the window.

O`MARA: And you couldn`t see anything, correct?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

O`MARA: And why was that?

BAHADOOR: Because it was dark.

O`MARA: All right. Now, we`ve spent some time showing the jury sort of where you are. You are to orient us without using the map for a moment. If you go out your door and look off to your left -- I`m sorry, your right, across the path, that`s where John Good lives?


O`MARA: And then beyond that is Miss Lauer, correct?

BAHADOOR: I don`t know who that is.

O`MARA: OK. So as you`re looking now across that area, it is too dark for you to see anybody? Is that accurate?

BAHADOOR: What do you mean?

O`MARA: The first time, when you looked out the first time, you heard a noise, caught your attention. You looked out the window, and you couldn`t see anything because it was too dark. Is that accurate?

BAHADOOR: I couldn`t identify figures. I couldn`t identify who it was out there.

O`MARA: Could you even tell that it was people at that point?

BAHADOOR: I could tell it was people.

O`MARA: And how far away were they from you?

BAHADOOR: They were a house down and over.

O`MARA: A house down and over. Would that put then -- when you say a house down, we`re talking towards the now known as the "T" intersection?


O`MARA: And when you say over, you mean towards John Good`s apartment?


O`MARA: On the other side of the path?

BAHADOOR: It was in the pathway.

O`MARA: At the pathway?


O`MARA: But right out in front of John Good`s door, is that accurate?

BAHADOOR: At the time I first saw, it was in the pathway.

O`MARA: Right out from John Good`s door, correct?


O`MARA: OK. If I might approach the display, your honor.

NELSON: Yes, you may.

O`MARA: If you can do this in a way that we can all see it, hopefully. This is you, of course, right?


O`MARA: You came out here and looked -- I`m sorry, you looked through a window. Is that accurate?

BAHADOOR: I initially looked through the window.

O`MARA: Where is the window, if you can just point to the window?


O`MARA: So you looked out this window here, correct?


O`MARA: And this is -- what is this right here?

BAHADOOR: That`s the fenced-in porch.

O`MARA: The screened-in enclosure?


O`MARA: With a screen?


O`MARA: Any shades or blinds on it?


O`MARA: So you looked through here, correct? Is that about this area here? Who lives here? Is that John Good?


O`MARA: OK. And you said that they were a house down and across the path? Is that your testimony?

BAHADOOR: A house down and in the pathway.

O`MARA: Let me ask you this. Did you see the people? Were they about here when you saw them? Could that be right?


O`MARA: OK. So they could have been right there when you first saw these people?


O`MARA: That I think you said you heard -- you saw flailing.


O`MARA: You couldn`t tell if they were standing up or laying down, right?

O`MARA: It looked erect to you?


O`MARA: What do you mean by that?

BAHADOOR: They looked standing.

O`MARA: Did one of them look standing or both of them? Let me ask you this way: could one have been on top of the other, kneeling down over him, maybe like this?

BAHADOOR: I couldn`t determine that.

O`MARA: Could they be like this?

BAHADOOR: I couldn`t determine that.

O`MARA: OK. Too dark?


O`MARA: And it was at that time -- well, when you first looked out, we just talked about that, then a few -- did you say -- I don`t mean to jump around on you, but at some point you moved over towards the sliding glass door, I think you said about 15 seconds later or so?

BAHADOOR: When I saw the individuals, I was at the sliding glass door. I didn`t see anybody in front of the window.

O`MARA: I apologize. I thought we were just talking about what you saw out the window. So out the window you saw nothing?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

O`MARA: And only the second time -- so you saw nothing. The second time when you went to the sliding glass door is when you saw the people where we just identified?


O`MARA: OK. It was at that time that you heard John Good say something to them?


O`MARA: OK. And I think what you said he said was, "I`m calling the police" or words such as that, right?

BAHADOOR: Something to that, yes.

O`MARA: OK. And then what did you do next?

BAHADOOR: After he said that, I went back to take the stove off.

O`MARA: OK. Didn`t do anything else related to this particular event going on outside until you heard a noise now identified as a gunshot, is that correct?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

O`MARA: You didn`t see anything else, didn`t even look to see anything else, correct?

BAHADOOR: Not when I went back to the stove.

O`MARA: All right. Let`s just follow that train of thought for a moment. When you went back, what did you do when you heard the gunshot?

BAHADOOR: I looked out -- looked out the sliding glass door, let the dog in, went upstairs.

O`MARA: Was that the second time you looked out the sliding glass door?


O`MARA: OK. And what did you see then?

BAHADOOR: It was a body.

O`MARA: OK. What else?

BAHADOOR: That`s all I remember.

O`MARA: Just one body?


O`MARA: Did you see a man with a flashlight?


O`MARA: Did you see Mr. Zimmerman staggering about?


O`MARA: Light`s still quite poor?


O`MARA: And at that point, having heard the gunshot, you just sort of retreated and went back upstairs where your sister was?


O`MARA: When is the first time you gave a statement to anyone about this?

BAHADOOR: The first time I gave a statement was the community had a town hall about the event.


BAHADOOR: And I gave a statement that day.

O`MARA: I`m just -- you know that you witnessed a shooting on February 26, correct?

BAHADOOR: I didn`t think what I saw was significant or what I heard was significant.

O`MARA: OK. You found out the next day that there was a shooting, right?


O`MARA: And you know that you had at least saw some of it, correct?


O`MARA: Did you like, in the Facebook term, "Justice for Trayvon Martin," the page?

BAHADOOR: Probably, yes.

O`MARA: OK. Just curious. Would that be accurate in suggesting that you certainly have a feeling of sympathy for the Martin family?

BAHADOOR: I have sympathy for both.

O`MARA: OK. But you liked the Trayvon Martin -- "Justice for Trayvon Martin" Facebook, you didn`t like the George Zimmerman Facebook, did you, like in the Facebook terminology?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

O`MARA: So with sympathy for both, why did you not do both and just do the "Justice for Trayvon" page?

BAHADOOR: The opportunity didn`t present itself.

O`MARA: Would you take a look at that and tell me if you could identify it.


O`MARA: What is that?

BAHADOOR: A drawing, a sketch I did.

O`MARA: That`s what you did, correct?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

O`MARA: Is that accurate -- is that an accurate copy of the sketch that you drew for the officers?


O`MARA: Any changes on it except for the addition of the exhibit?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

O`MARA: It`s correct, isn`t it?

BAHADOOR: Yes, it`s correct.

O`MARA: I would move this into evidence, your honor? Now being identified by our witness as the sketches she drew.

NELSON: Ok. Any objections?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Same objection, your honor, in terms of that we previously discussed.

NELSON: Ok. Well, please approach...

O`MARA: If I may approach the witness.

NELSON: Yes, you may.

O`MARA: This is now in evidence. I`d like to ask you some questions about it. Firstly, can you tell me the date that you prepared that?

BAHADOOR: It`s dated March 20, 2012.

O`MARA: If you could, just describe what that is intending to show.

BAHADOOR: Where my house is located in reference to where I believe I saw arms.

NELSON: I believe I saw?


O`MARA: I see a notation of arms identified on that document. If I`m looking at it with the orientation of the writing, top left corner is your house, correct? That`s the house that we`ve been talking about?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

O`MARA: And then you look across the pathway to what you have is the second house that you`ve identified as John Goode`s house, correct?


O`MARA: Then I see a hedge, and then the second house screen, correct?

BAHADOOR: And house screen.

O`MARA: And house screen, sorry. Thought that was a two. And that is in fact the end of that row of houses, correct?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

O`MARA: And this is a picture of what you saw the only time you saw people out there, correct?

BAHADOOR: Correct.


O`MARA: You had stated on a previous occasion that you could not make out any words whatsoever from what you heard outside, is that correct?

BAHADOOR: Correct. The only word I can remember was "no".

O`MARA: Or an "ohhh-ahhh" kind of sound.


O`MARA: Could they have -- were they screams?

BAHADOOR: It was a screaming noise with that sound.

O`MARA: You have heard -- I am presuming what we now identify as the 911 call, correct? Have you ever heard that tape?

BAHADOOR: On the media.

O`MARA: On the media?


O`MARA: Ok. You heard the screams in the background.


O`MARA: Were those screams similar to the screams that you say that you heard? Or are they different?

BAHADOOR: They`re similar.

O`MARA: Could they in fact have been the same screams?


O`MARA: Again, just a moment, your honor.


O`MARA: You have testified about the word "flailing" and then I note also on your sketch you mention the word "arms". Can you tell us a bit more about what you saw when you saw arms flailing?

BAHADOOR: I just saw arms moving up and down.

O`MARA: Like this?


O`MARA: Is that -- and I moved for the jury`s benefit, my arms up and down in this type of a movement.


O`MARA: Don`t say yes just because I did it. If it was something different, tell me it`s different. But is that what you saw, up and down?

BAHADOOR: It was more like this.


BAHADOOR: Fast pace.


BAHADOOR: I was only doing it so they could bring attention to what had happened.

O`MARA: Which was that you thought George Zimmerman killed Trayvon Martin --

BAHADOOR: I never said that.

O`MARA: -- and he should be prosecuted for it, right?

BAHADOOR: I never said that.

O`MARA: Why did you sign the petition at that said I`m hereby in favor, by signing the petition, of prosecute the killer of our son`s 17 year-old Trayvon Martin. You did sign that petition, right? I`ll show you your Facebook --

BAHADOOR: I did like. So saying "like" means I signed the petition?

O`MARA: No, no, no. In addition to liking I`m asking you now, if you signed the petition? May I approach the witness, your honor?

NELSON: Yes, you may. Show it to counsel, please.

O`MARA: Let me show you this. First of all, it`s your Facebook, correct? That`s your page?


O`MARA: Tell me what that says right --

BAHADOOR: You`re blocking my view.

O`MARA: Sorry. Tell me what that says on your Facebook front page right there, just read that.

BAHADOOR: "Prosecute the killer of our son, 17-year-old Trayvon Martin, sign the petition."

O`MARA: Thank you. One last thing. Since this only came up today for the first time that you talked to anybody about it, how did you know to answer Mr. de la Rionda`s questions in a way that got out information -

Re-direct Examination:

BERNIE DE LA RIONDA, PROSECUTOR: With the court`s permission, may I approach the witness? (inaudible)

NELSON: Yes, you may.

DE LA RIONDA: For the purpose of the record, I`m going to be showing the witness what`s been marked just for identification purposes as M like in Mary, N like in Nancy and O like in Oscar. Ma`am, I`m going to show you those three exhibits, starting off with N like in Nancy, M like in Mary and O like in Oscar.

Mr. O`Mara. Before I get into that, this happened back in February 26 of 2012, correct?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

DE LA RIONDA: And Mr. O`Mara asked you about that you came forward I believe is when they had a town hall meeting like in a retreat at Twin Lakes, the club house, the police were asking if anybody has seen anything. Is that correct?


DE LA RIONDA: Ok. So when it originally happened, you didn`t go out there and say hey I want to be a witness and I want to get on national TV, did you?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

DE LA RIONDA: You wanted to remain silent, you didn`t want to get involved at all, is that true?

BAHADOOR: Correct.

DE LA RIONDA: Now, regarding the one portion that Mr. O`Mara repeatedly asked you when he asked you to reference the three documents that you have in front of you, I believe they`re M like in Mary, N like in Nancy and O like in Oscar. I believe N that is in front of you is the statement that you gave -- a transcript of the statement that you gave investigator Chris Sereno.

Did investigator Chris Sereno he ever ask you the movement that you saw when you described on page two specifically when you said I heard noise, it was screaming noise and I thought it was kids playing in the back as they normally do. And then it sounded like somebody was saying either "no" or "huh", and they were running in the back.

Did Mr. Sereno specifically say, when they were running, "Tell me which direction were they running," did he ever ask you that?


DE LA RIONDA: Ma`am now what I want to reference the next part is, the investigator -- I`m sorry, that should be exhibit M in front of you, like Mary. When you were asked again about -- by investigator John Bachelor with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, to draw a picture, do you recall that? And they asked you in terms of the arms flailing, did that investigator ask you at any time when you described the running or what occurred to tell him which way the running was from left to right or right to left, did they ever ask you that?


DE LA RIONDA: Ok. And finally, ma`am, in the deposition that Mr. West took where I was present and where Mr. O`Mara was present, and that should be in state`s -- defense -- I`m sorry, what`s been marked for identification purposes defense exhibit O, the thick one that I believe is a total of 30 -- let me get it right -- 31 pages. On page 5 of that deposition, you see there at the top, when you stated "I was in the kitchen cooking dinner, I heard some running and garbled screams. That`s what caught my attention." Question, "did the runs and garbled screams seem to be happening at the same time?" "Yes."

Did Mr. West or Mr. O`Mara ever ask you what direction was the running, from left to right or right to left?


DE LA RIONDA: You stated "It sounded just like running, so I would say yes, it sounded like feet on the ground." Do you recall that answer you gave?


DE LA RIONDA: Did Mr. O`Mara or did Mr. West ever ask you which direction was the running coming from?


DE LA RIONDA: Do you recall in that same deposition stating, when being asked, do you distinguish any words, specifically on page five of that deposition, and you saying in terms of no, the only word you heard was "No." Do you recall that?


DE LA RIONDA: I want to reference that same deposition on page ten, ma`am, your answer in terms of being described what was going on when the figures were up there. It looked like they were standing position. They were bent over, standing over straight. Do you recall giving that answer on page number ten -- I`m sorry, page ten under number five through nine. Do you recall stating it looked like they were in a standing position?



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