• With: Mark O'Mara and Don West, Defense Attorneys for George Zimmerman

    This is a rush transcript from "On the Record," July 16, 2013. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

    GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: Tonight: Sharp knives are out for the media!


    MARK O'MARA, GEORGE ZIMMERMAN'S DEFENSE ATTORNEY: You guys, the media -- he was like a patient in an operating table where mad scientists were committing experiments on him and he had no anesthesia!

    UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: George Zimmerman never would have been arrested if it wasn't the outcry from black people, brown people, white people, Republicans, Democrats, Christians and Muslims in this nation who demanded his arrest!

    RUSH LIMBAUGH, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST: Zimmerman never would have been arrested if it weren't for the outcry! What does that tell you? It means that there wasn't a reason to arrest him, that the only reason he was is because a bunch of people started bellyaching and intimidated law enforcement! They had to fire a police chief in order to -- and then Angela Corey starts running around, hiding evidence and so forth!

    SEAN HANNITY, HOST "HANNITY": The nation is focused on your case. Why do you think that is, and what do you make of it? And what does it mean to you?

    GEORGE ZIMMERMAN, FORMER MURDER DEFENDANT: It's surreal. I don't like that they rush to judgment the way they have.

    O'MARA: He didn't know why he was turned into this monster, but quite honestly, you guys had a lot to do with it. You just did.

    ROBERT ZIMMERMAN, JR., GEORGE ZIMMERMAN'S BROTHER: The race profiteers, they have a business model. They have a script. I mean, this was a profitable event for them. And they spun George's race as a white man. And then later, when he became Hispanic, the media spun his race into white Hispanic.

    O'MARA: You took a story that was fed to you, and you ran with it, and you ran right over him!

    REV. AL SHARPTON, NATIONAL ACTION NETWORK: Even after the verdict, there was not even the decency to acknowledge that this man, Mr. Zimmerman, was wrong in assuming that Trayvon Martin was doing anything but abiding by the law and minding his own business!

    DON WEST, GEORGE ZIMMERMAN'S DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Nothing, of course, like this, with the media attention, nothing that had the case tried over and over and over again in the media, nothing where the media was accused of such irresponsible early on, frankly, being swept along with this narrative that's simply been shown not to be true.


    VAN SUSTEREN: What else did George Zimmerman's lawyers have to say about the media coverage? Mark O'Mara and Don West join us. Good evening, gentlemen.

    O'MARA: Good evening. How are you doing?

    VAN SUSTEREN: I think it's only fair, because we've certainly had at it with all the lawyers, the judge, and everybody else at trial. So I want to let you have a chance to have at it. Let we start with you, Mark. Tell me what you think about the media coverage.

    O'MARA: Well, again, we talked about, in the beginning, it was just outrageous because what they did was buy into the media, or the perspective given by the Trayvon Martin attorneys, the family, and just ran with it. Unfortunately, they just didn't look at any of the background and ran straightforward, and it really set this case up to be the racial frenzy that it became.


    WEST: Well, from the very beginning, George had to prove his innocence, an incredible uphill challenge against almost unspeakable odds. But we did. We did.

    VAN SUSTEREN: What is the impact on the actual trial of the media coverage? Forget the noise aspect of it. Was there anything that the media coverage, good, bad and ugly, what you agree with, disagree -- did it actually have an impact on what you think is the actual fairness inside the courtroom of the trial?

    O'MARA: I think that inside the courtroom, we didn't have a lot of media bias and media exposure. Certainly, the jurors were kept away from it. There's thousands of analysts who are going to say what they think about it. But I'm actually more OK, once my jury is protected. So I wasn't too worried about that.

    All the media that led up to it caused us to have a lot of inquiries of the jury regarding pre-trial publicity. And I still think that they were affected by the media blitz. But hopefully, they put it all aside.

    VAN SUSTEREN: I suppose, Don, if there hadn't been the impact of the media or the interest of the media, your jury would not have been sequestered. In general, defense lawyers don't want their jurors sequestered. Well, neither does the judge and the prosecutors, but less so for the defense. Do you agree?

    WEST: Oh, sure. Once we got our jury, however, we turned them over, if you will, to the Seminole County sheriff's office, who did a remarkable job protecting them, and that was truly remarkable.

    VAN SUSTEREN: Don, what about this NBC lawsuit? They did a pretty bad hack job on some editing. It says -- what the -- what the NBC version was is that your client said, This guy looks like he's up to no good. He looks black. And what the actual 911 call was is, This guy looks like he's up to no good, or he's on drugs or something. It's raining. And he's just walking around looking about. And the dispatcher says, OK, and this guy, is he white, black or Hispanic? Zimmerman then answered, He looks black. All that sort of middle part of the dispatcher was cut out.

    What are you going to do about that? You've filed suit.

    WEST: Well, I'm going to ask Mark to answer your question because he's directly involved in that litigation himself.


    O'MARA: I'm helping out with an attorney in Pennsylvania, Jim Beasley, who's sort of taking the lead on it. And you know, quite honestly, what they did was outrageous. They took an information, cut out the middle part, and I think they did so to sort of cut corners. I think they presumed that George Zimmerman was a racist murderer, so if he was, no harm, no foul.

    They were wrong. They sort of were part of the process of all of this turning against George. And thank God he was still able to get a fair trial in light of all that.

    VAN SUSTEREN: You know, I don't know any of the people involved in this. I know NBC did, I think, fire some people as a result of that. My wild guess on this, to both of you, is that it's probably some young person who was not particularly supervised by other people, or someone inexperienced, because it's dubbed -- I mean, I can't even -- you know, even -- we're all competitors, but I really can't imagine that they were trying to sort of stick it to you or to your client. You know, but that's just my guess.

    O'MARA: Sure, I guess -- I guess we can give them the benefit of that doubt. It's just that it was so egregious, taking out that 45 seconds had such an impact...

    VAN SUSTEREN: Horrible!

    O'MARA: ... on the case that you can't sit back and go -- to get on a national program -- it wasn't on a local program. This started national -- that they just have to have better safeguards in place. And I think they just rushed through it, not caring because they figured, again, if he's a racist, you can get away with almost anything.

    VAN SUSTEREN: Well, my advice to NBC is to make a quick settlement and everybody move on.

    All right, let me -- let me move on to something else, gentlemen. there's been a lot of talk about the judge in this case, Judge Debra Nelson, taking heat for her testy exchanges with the lawyers, mostly you, Don. Take a look.


    JUDGE DEBRA NELSON, FLORIDA CIRCUIT COURT: And have you made a decision, sir, as to whether or not you want to testify in this case?