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July 16th, 2013
06:15 PM ET

Reaction to Juror B37: Young black men 'don't get the benefit of the doubt'

One of the jurors who acquitted George Zimmerman told CNN Monday she did not believe race played a role in the confrontation between Zimmerman and Trayvon Martin.

"I don't think that Zimmerman uses the word suspicious, I don't think that enters his mind, unless there is some element of race involved," said Washington Post columnist Clinton Yates.

"A lot of people walk around neighborhoods doing a lot of things. Just because one teenager happens to be looking into a house, the difference between suspicious and not suspicious is often times race," said Yates.

Asked what she thought of George Zimmerman, the woman, who was identified just as Juror B37, said, "I think George Zimmerman is a man whose heart was in the right place, but just got displaced by the vandalism in the neighborhoods and wanting to catch these people so badly that he went above and beyond what he really should have done. But I think his heart was in the right place. It just went terribly wrong."

"She said she thought George Zimmerman's heart was in the right place. He also shot someone through the heart," said Yates. "People who don't get the benefit of the doubt are the young black men of America that are looked at as dangerous, they don't get the benefit of the doubt on their hearts being in the right place."

Juror B37's answer shows a certain level of sympathy for George Zimmerman that may just be inherent, says CNN senior legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin.

When the juror was asked if she feels sorry for Trayvon Martin, she responded that she feels sorry for both of them.

"Trayvon Martin is dead. George Zimmerman was inconvenienced. I mean the idea you could put your sympathy equally to the two of them was really shocking," said Toobin.

"I'm not saying she voted for the wrong verdict, I think there were a lot of problems with this prosecution's case, but her degree of sympathy for George Zimmerman was really striking to me, and indicative of someone who was a very good defense juror right out of the box," said Toobin.

It seemed like everything the defense said spoke to this juror, and she agreed with their theory.

"Every time there was an inference that could be drawn, every time there was someone you could believe and someone you could not believe, she believed the defense version," said Toobin.

Check out the full discussion in the video above.

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