The woman behind a petition to stop one of the jurors in the George Zimmerman murder trial from writing a book about her experiences told Fusion on Tuesday that even she was surprised when it succeeded.
“I was expecting to start that Change[.org] petition, go to sleep, wake up in the morning and then just ask more and more people to sign it,” Genie Lauren told host Alicia Menendez. “I wasn’t expecting to get over 1,000 signatures in a night.”
Lauren explained that she started the campaign in the wake of an appearance by the juror — identified as B37 — on CNN on Monday night, less than 48 hours after she and five other women found Zimmerman not guilty of second-degree murder after he killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in February 2012. The juror told Anderson Cooper she believed Martin “played a huge role” in his own death.
Sharlene Martin, president of Martin Literary Management, announced shortly after the trial that the juror had signed a deal for literary representation.
“She seems to me to be very opportunistic,” Lauren said to Menendez in describing the juror. “To take this time to make money off of this really, just tragic moment, I had to do something, I was so angry.”
The petition spread quickly via Twitter, forcing both Martin and B37 to release separate statements signalling the end of their agreement. Four other members of the jury released a separate statement distancing themselves from the interview.
“We also wish to point out that the opinions of Juror B-37, expressed on the Anderson Cooper show were her own, and not in any way representative of the jurors listed below,” the statement read.
“I actually got that statement in an email before I received that statement of the juror,” Lauren explained, adding that Martin contacted her within an hour of beginning her campaign. “Almost minutes apart.”
Watch Martin’s interview, aired Tuesday, below.