Yet another twist in the case of the killing of Trayvon Martin. George Zimmerman’s defense team is now preparing for a new bond hearing, after Zimmerman turned himself in for a second time on Sunday. A judge ordered Zimmerman back to jail on Friday for misleading the court during his initial bond hearing.
Neither Zimmerman nor his wife mentioned at the original hearing that he had collected more than $200,000 in donations through a PayPal account on his personal website.
On the George Zimmerman Legal case website, his lawyer writes:
“The audio recordings of Mr. Zimmerman’s phone conversations while in jail make it clear that Mr. Zimmerman knew a significant sum had been raised by his original fundraising website. We feel the failure to disclose these funds was caused by fear, mistrust, and confusion. The gravity of this mistake has been distinctly illustrated, and Mr. Zimmerman understands that this mistake has undermined his credibility, which he will have to work to repair.”
Zimmerman also did not disclose that he had a second valid passport. He turned in only one at his bond hearing in April.
Zimmerman is pleading not guilty to second-degree murder charges for killing 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in February. His case has put a spotlight on Florida’s controversial Stand Your Ground law, which allows the use of deadly force if a person feels his or her life is threatened or at risk for severe, bodily harm.
A new analysis by the Tampa Bay Times finds race plays a “complex role” in Florida’s self-defense law. According to its examination of close to 200 Stand Your Ground cases in Florida, “people who killed a black person walked free 73 percent of the time, while those who killed a white person went free 59 percent of the time.” But the newspaper is careful not to draw any conclusions from this data, stating that the analysis does not “prove that race caused the disparity in cases with black and white victims. Other factors may be at play.”