George Zimmerman, accused killer of Trayvon Martin, is back in jail after a judge revoked his bail over questions about his finances.
At a hearing on Friday, June 1st, Circuit Court Judge Kenneth Lester said that George Zimmerman had falsely represented his financial state when the $150,000 bond amount was granted. In April, Zimmerman’s wife testified that they had limited funds. It was later discovered that the defendant had raised more than $200,000 from a website setup gather contributions to support his defense.
Prosecutor Berne de la Rionda said, “The court was led to believe the Zimmerman’s didn’t have a single penny. It was misleading, and I don’t know what words to use other than it was a blatant lie.”
The Circuit Court Judge agreed with prosecutors, saying Zimmerman “can’t sit back and obtain the benefit of a lower bond based upon those material falsehoods.” The judge gave George Zimmerman 48 hours to turn himself in, with a deadline of 2:30 p.m. Sunday, June 3rd. Zimmerman turned himself in before the deadline.His attorney called the failure to disclose the additional funds a “misunderstanding”. “The vast majority of the funds in question are in an independently managed trust, and neither Mr. Zimmerman or his attorneys have direct access to the money,” his defense tea, said in a statement on their website.
Prosecutors also accused Zimmerman on Friday of owning two passports and failing to surrender the second one. However, the judge dismissed the passport issue.
George Zimmerman Arrested Again by Police for Gun-Related Incident
Zimmerman Allegedly Points a Shotgun at His Girlfriend
George Zimmerman, who still reigns as the Most Hated Man in America, was arrested on Monday, November 18th, 2013 in Apopka, Florida. Mr. Zimmerman was charged by the local police with threatening his girlfriend with a loaded gun.
The Florida Seminole County Sheriff’s Office responded to a 911 call from a person who reported a disturbance at the home of Samantha Scheibe. Samantha is (or was before this incident) Zimmerman’s new girlfriend. The 911 call was placed at 12:30 PM E.T.
Scheibe told the police that she and Zimmerman were having an argument, and she alleged that he got angry when she asked him to leave. She said he broke some of her things and then pointed a double barrel or long-barreled shotgun at her. She also alleged that he pushed her out of the house and barricaded the door with furniture to prevent her re-entry.
Zimmerman also called 911 and told the police that his girlfriend was acting crazy, and that she was pregnant with his child. He told police that he never pulled a gun and that his gun was in a locked bag during the incident.
The Seminole County Sheriff’s Office officially charged Zimmerman with three crimes, a felony and two misdemeanors. The charges included:
- Felony aggravated assault
- Misdemeanor battery
- Misdemeanor criminal mischief
Zimmerman’s Legal Troubles Continue
Since Zimmerman was acquitted in the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin, he has had multiple run-ins with law enforcement officials:
- In September, he was arrested after a domestic dispute with his estranged wife, Shellie Zimmerman. No charges were officially filed by either party due to a lack of evidence. Sounds somewhat familiar.
- In September, in Lake Mary, Florida, he was issued a traffic ticket for $256 for driving 60 mph in a 45 mph zone.
- In July, he was pulled over by law enforcement for speeding in Texas, but the police officer only gave him a verbal warning.
Zimmerman is currently being held in the county jail and is scheduled to appear in court on Tuesday, November 19th at 1:30 PM E.T. Seminole County Police are waiting to receive a search warrant to search the house where the incident occured for weapons and other items.
Regardless of the actual circumstances of this particular incident, he continues to live a life behind the scenes as one of the most hated people in America.
Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman Case Overview
Zimmerman Charged With 2nd-degree Murder
On Wednesday, April 11, 2012, Florida special prosecutor Angela Corey announced that George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer who shot and killed unarmed Trayvon Martin, was charged with second-degree murder. During the press conference in Jacksonville, Florida, she said Zimmerman turned himself in and was being held in somewhere in the state.
If convicted, he may face life in prison.
17 Year-Old Florida Boy Shot and Killed by Neighborhood Watchman
Few cases have captured such widespread attention as the recent killing of 17 year old Florida high school student Trayvon Martin. On February 26th, George Zimmerman, a self-appointed neighborhood captain, shot and killed Trayvon Martin, who was on his way home from a convenience store with Skittles and a bottle of iced tea.
On the night of the killing, George Zimmerman was reportedly patrolling a neighborhood as self-appointed neighborhood watchman. Zimmerman notices Trayvon Martin walking in the neighborhood and began following him. George Zimmerman called police and reported the situation. The 911 operator specifically told Zimmerman to stop following Trayvon, but he pursued him anyway. Shortly thereafter, several eyewitnesses called 911 and reported that they a scuffle going on, then someone cried for help, then a gunshot was heard.
When the Sanford police arrived on the scene, they found Zimmerman armed with a handgun, standing over Martin’s body. Zimmerman reportedly had a bloody nose and a wound on the back of his head. Trayvon was unresponsive and was pronounced dead at the scene.
When questioned by the Sanford police at the scene, George told police that he shot Martin in self defense. Florida has a Stand Your Ground law that says a person may use force in self-defense when they their life may be in danger.
The police department did not arrest Zimmerman, nor did they test him for drugs or alcohol use.
The lead homicide detective on the case, Chris Serino, said that he didn’t believe Zimmerman’s testimony and recommended that he be arrested for manslaughter. But the State Attorney’s office, headed by Norman Wolfinger, instructed him not to press charges because there wasn’t enough evidence to lead to a conviction. The Sanford police Chief, Billy Lee, says that there is no evidence to dispute Zimmerman’s claim of self defense. The police chief has since stepped down.
Despite a nationwide public outcry, petitions, and public protests, Zimmerman has yet to be arrested. Leading the protests, Trayvon’s parents have demanded that an arrest be made and the 911 tapes to be released.
The U.S. Justice Department has launched an investigation into the case. In addition, a grand jury will review the evidence in the case.
Stand-Your-Ground and No Duty to Retreat Laws
The highly controversial stand-your-ground law states that a person may use force in self-defense when there is reasonable belief of a threat, without an obligation to try to retreat or get away first. In some stand your ground cases, a person may use deadly force in public areas without a having a duty to retreat.
Under these legal concepts, a person is justified to use deadly force in certain situations and the “stand your ground” law would be a defense to criminal charges and a civil suit.
In general, the law is designed to protect individuals who feel their life may be in danger. In some situations, some people would hesitate to use lethal force to protect themselves for fear of the lethal consequences. These laws basically say that you can use whatever force that you deem necessary at the moment if you feel that your life is in danger.
The statutes are also referred to as a “line in the sand” or “no duty to retreat”.
List of States with Stand-Your-Ground Laws
The following states have such laws:
- New Hampshire
- North Carolina
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
- South Carolina
- South Dakota
- West Virginia
Wisconsin and Wyoming have adopted Castle Doctrine statutes. Iowa, Nebraska, Virginia, and Washington are considering “Stand Your Ground” laws.
Stand Your Ground Laws in the News
The controversial laws have received increased attention and scrutiny as a result of the recent shooting of Florida teen Trayvon Martin by self appointed Neighborhood Watch and volunteer loser George Zimmerman.
For more information, including the controversy, its affect on crime and its use in other countries see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stand-your-ground_law.