In an interview with CNN, Jeantel was asked if she wishes she had acted differently on the witness stand during Zimmerman’s trial.
“A little bit,” Jeantel admitted in response to a question regarding whether she blamed herself for Zimmerman’s acquittal. When asked if she should have said something different or acted differently on the witness stand, she told CNN, “Act different.”
Jeantel’s confession comes nearly a year after Zimmerman was acquitted for the fatal shooting of Martin. Despite blaming herself, Jeantel said the jurors in the trial were also at fault. According to her, the jurors who handed down the not guilty verdict didn’t take her seriously as a witness in light of them judging her looks and speech.
In addition to testifying at the trial, Jeantel attracted attention for her combative interaction under questioning by the defense, which drew widespread criticism.
Nevertheless, Jeantel, whose reading level was not above that of a third grader at the time of the trial, has turned her life around by going through an intensive tutoring program and graduating from high school this spring.
Although she’s changed her life, Jeantel’s opinion of Zimmerman remains the same.
“He did wrong, and he’s got to man up to it,” she told CNN. “To me, you’re not a man, George Zimmerman’s not a man. That’s still a little boy, with a grown body.”
To see Rachel Jeantel’s interview with CNN, check out the video below: