Defense attorney Mark O’Mara has state witness Selene Bahadoor read from her Facebook page while testifying during George Zimmerman’s trial in Seminole circuit court in Sanford, Fla. June 25. Zimmerman has been charged with second-degree murder for the 2012 shooting death of Trayvon Martin. (AP Photo/Orlando Sentinel, Gary W. Green, Pool)
by Kyle Hightower and Mike Schneider
SANFORD, Fla. (AP) — A former neighbor of George Zimmerman testified Wednesday that she heard a boy’s cry for help shortly before hearing the firing of a gun.
But Jayne Surdyka also testified on the third day of testimony in Zimmerman’s murder trial that she heard multiple gunshots: “pop, pop, pop.” Only one shot was fired in the fatal encounter between Zimmerman and 17-year-old Trayvon Martin.
“I truly believe the second yell for help was a yelp,” said Surdyka, who later dabbed away tears as prosecutors played her 911 call. “It was excruciating. I really felt it was a boy’s voice.”
Surdyka told the court that before the shooting, she heard an aggressive voice and a softer voice exchanging words for several minutes.
“It was someone being very aggressive and angry at someone,” she said.
During the struggle, she said, she saw a person in dark clothes on top of the other person. Martin was wearing a dark sweatshirt and Zimmerman wore red clothing. Surdyka said she saw the person who was on top get off the body after the shot was fired.
During cross-examination, defense attorney Don West tried to show there was a lapse in what Surdyka saw. Defense attorneys contend Martin was on top of Zimmerman during the struggle, but after the neighborhood watch volunteer fired a shot, Zimmerman got on top of Martin.
West also challenged Surdyka about her belief that the cry for help was a boy’s voice, saying she was making an assumption about whose voice it was.
Another neighbor, Jeannee Manalo, testified after Surdyka that she believed Zimmerman was on top of Martin. Manalo also described hearing howling, but she couldn’t tell who it was coming from.