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July 2nd, 2013
10:22 PM ET

Former O.J. Simpson prosecutor Christopher Darden on the Zimmerman trial: "It's a race case without question"

As the George Zimmerman trial hit its seventh day on Tuesday, the topic of race continued to serve as a dominant theme woven throughout the fabric of the proceedings.

Not since the 1994 trial of O.J. Simpson has America been so polarized and divided, as nearly two decades after the Hall of Fame running back was acquitted of double-homicide, the country is again struggling for answers following an event that left African-American teen Trayvon Martin dead at the hands of a multi-racial Hispanic American man 11 years his senior.

Christopher Darden was a prosecutor in that O.J. Simpson trial, and joining "Piers Morgan Live" on Tuesday evening, he offered his experienced perspective on another case that exists as a microcosm set on the backdrop of larger racial issues:

"It's a race case without question. It was made a race case prior to the case being filed," Darden said. "The defense played the race card just the other day when they introduced a statement supposedly made by Trayvon where he referred to Zimmerman as a cracker. And so, race is the case."

Asked by the host for his analysis of the trial to this point, and Darden revealed an opinion that strongly favors the Zimmerman camp:

"I think this is a case for the defense to lose. I think the prosecution has an uphill battle. I'm not sure that I would have filed this case had I been the prosecutor, whether there was political pressure to do so or not," said the man who famously asked Simpson to try on the once-blood-soaked gloves. "We do have laws, we do have rules. And the right to self-defense is a law that has existed in this country since the beginning."

Watch the clip for more of Morgan's interview with Christopher Darden, and for the next edition of "Piers Morgan Live," watch CNN every night at 9.
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Filed under: The Big Story
soundoff (65 Responses)
  1. george

    I lost a lot of respect for piers tonight during the interview with Hill and Weintraub tonight because several times , three to be exact that Zimmerman ignored the advice of authority and the instructions of the Police when he he got out of his car to observe or follow Trayvon.
    Piers was absolutely -the 911 operator is nether the poice or the authority. In addition the 911 operators depending on the situation have no authority to tell a citizen not to observe or watch someone whie the police are on the way.
    Piers was acting very prejudicial besides making false statements tonight because the 911 operators are not law enforcement officers nor do they work for the police department. I think piers owes the viewers an apoogy for the misinformation tonight.

    July 3, 2013 at 1:18 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Zoche

      Did anyone consider maybe he was already out of the car when the cops told him not to follow him.

      July 3, 2013 at 2:15 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  2. Ann Slate

    Media commentators and lawyers alike have gotten so caught up in race that they missed the boat on what this case is really about, They made the case about race the moment George Zimmerman shot and killed a black teenager, profiling him without cause and GZ's own actions which caused this whole thing, to now audaciously claim stand your ground self defense is laughable. And any commentator who would argue his grounds is just as racist as he is. If you want to talk about race, let's talk about it. If you think what GZ did was justifiable and should be dismissed as bad judgment or minimal, you have a racial problem. No, no, no...he committed a murder and HE should not get away with it. To test whether you have a racial problem reverse the race of each person, then see how you would feel if it was TM who killed GZ. Would your position be the same? If you are a racist, I think not. But if you want to be unbiased take a moment and look at this from Trayvon Martin's perspective. He was a kid who no doubt was drilled in school about what to do if you are about to be abducted. Children are taught to run, scream and fight back, all of which TM did. Remember there was a creepy perverted guy (GZ's actions are indicative of this) following him in the dark and in the rain. He was scared and fought for his life. He did what he was taught to do if he felt he was about to be abducted. Because there are so many crimes against children, some abducted and later found dead, there should be a law that says it is illegal to follow a child period. There is such a lack of remorse from all perspectives, defense lawyers and commentators alike that is a key indicator of racism in this case. This case should not be about race, it should be about protecting our children of all races. This killer should be held accountable. Just ask John Walsh how he feels about it. Also there are federal stalking laws that are applicable in this case,

    July 3, 2013 at 3:22 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Zoche

      So you think anyone who defends them self from an attacker who doesn't have a gun should be convicted of murdered. An example of the girls in Cleveland would be convicted if they shot their captor if he was unarmed. interesting

      July 3, 2013 at 2:19 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • Lorraine Howell

      I think Zimmerman did what he intended to do all along. Zimmerman was hunting that night, just like any hunter would do. Think about it, a hunter chambers the round in his weapon prior to his prey coming along. When the prey is in site, the hunter fires the round and hopes like heck it's one shot one kill. If the hunter wait until the prey is in site to chamber the round, he will scare the prey off, thus ruining the chance of hitting his target. So tell me when did Zimmerman chamber the round? He shot that child in cold blood with a 9mm automatic weapon, not a revolver. In case you are not clear, with a 9mm, in order to fire the weapon you have to pull the charging handle to the rear in order to get the first bullet in the chamber, that takes both hands. Zimmerman had his weapon ready before the altercation. In fact, I believe he had the weapon out and Trevon saw the weapon. With Zimmerman so close to him, Trevon's only out was to take a chance and fight his attacker versus run because he could have been shot in the back. Zimmerman has no defensive wounds on his hands where he was fighting back. Trevon had no defensive wounds or injuries where Zimmerman had fought Trevon back. If you're getting your head smashed on the concrete, you will punch, bite, kick and scratch your attacker. Zimmerman is lying. Retired veteran. Oh, Command Sergeants Majors are some of the biggest liars you'd ever see in your life, that's a fact!

      July 7, 2013 at 10:35 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Dolores

    There is a lot of racism in this case. the black community want Mr Zimmerman to be guilty because hes white not for any other reason. I had to change my mind about a lot of things I thought about what happened after actually
    listening to testimony

    July 3, 2013 at 7:06 am | Report abuse | Reply
  4. alwanderer

    Am I the only one who finds some thing obscene about a Mexican American married to a black American wife being tried in the court of liberal American opinion as a white racist murderer?

    July 3, 2013 at 11:25 am | Report abuse | Reply
    • Zoche

      The very act that his surname was not Hispanic was capitalized on immediately. The rush to the race factor was to allow the Martin family to sue so soon after the attack and jumped on by all the activist who didn't bother to understand the facts. I often think these same activists would hold a tv conference if it was a white mouse attacking a black mouse. I live in a city of a large Hispanic community. It unreal how often they are attacked by black gang members on their paydays. Yet how often are those considered hate crime?

      July 3, 2013 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  5. Andre Elliott

    Why doesn't Mr. Zimmerman, who has been reenacting what happened, scream out aloud to prove it is his voice and not the voice of Trayvon Martin. I am baffled that no one expects Mr. Zimmerman to let all hear his screaming voice.

    July 3, 2013 at 9:38 pm | Report abuse | Reply
    • LA

      It was too easy for GZ to confess of his sin to God. I guaranty God would forgive him and keep him and his family safe. GZ had little faith in Jesus Christ because he has to live the remainder of his life in slavery. I agree, he just placed himself in a black man's shoes.

      July 15, 2013 at 8:34 am | Report abuse | Reply
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