By Attorney Melba Pearson
Special to THELAW.TV
Either George Zimmerman has the worst luck in the world … or there is a new side of him being revealed. Today, a Florida judge granted a $9,000 bond on Zimmerman’s latest charges of aggravated assault with a firearm, battery and criminal mischief. These charges were as result of an incident that occurred at the home of his new girlfriend, Samantha Scheibe.
George Zimmerman first made headlines back in February of 2012, as the man charged in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman’s case became an avalanche of drama, with his wife Shellie Zimmerman standing steadfastly at his side. George Zimmerman became the poster child for Florida’s controversial “Stand Your Ground” law, which allows the use deadly force in a public forum if the you believe your life is in danger. On one side of the debate were conservatives and gun rights supporters, claiming that Zimmerman was correct in his actions; on the other were those who believed that a young man was murdered in cold blood. Debates were had in the media and in the halls of power, with no changes made to the underlying law.
In July of this year, a jury found Zimmerman not guilty of the sole charge of 2nd degree murder. One would think this would be the end of the story. Alas, it was not.
Instead of showing some sympathy for the fact that someone died at his hands (justified or not), Zimmerman visited the factory where his gun was manufactured, posing for pictures and enjoying his 15 minutes of fame.
Then his legal troubles resumed. Zimmerman was pulled over twice for speeding. In September of this year, his wife Shellie, now estranged, called police saying that Zimmerman threatened her. Her father was present. No charges were filed in that case due to a lack of supporting evidence. It is also possible that Shellie and her father did not want to press charges. Shellie Zimmerman allegedly has served Zimmerman with divorce papers in his jail cell. (See my previous article on Shellie.)
Now, George Zimmerman is charged with threatening his current girlfriend with a shotgun and trashing her house. In a panicked 911 call, Samantha Scheibe described Zimmerman breaking her furniture and eventually forcing her out of her own home. When police arrived, Scheibe was reportedly outside of the home, and police found the front door to the home barricaded with furniture. Zimmerman was allegedly sitting calmly inside the residence.
What is most disturbing is the 911 call Zimmerman made (after Scheibe’s initial 911 call). In his call, he says in a chillingly calm voice that his girlfriend is destroying her own furniture and she was just “going crazy.”
As a seasoned prosecutor who spent many years trying domestic crimes, Zimmerman’s behavior in his call shows textbook manipulation. He is blaming everyone else for the situation, except himself, to show that he can “get away with anything.” This type of behavior is to show his girlfriend that he is the one in control and to instill fear in her.
Also keep in mind a little known fact. Back in 2005, Zimmerman’s former fiancée filed for a restraining order against him, citing domestic violence. He responded with one against her and the court granted both requests. Zimmerman also had to take anger management classes for attacking a police officer in that same year.
If there was only one incident, there would be nothing more to say.
But three accusations of violent behavior in less than two years?
Three different women accusing Zimmerman of domestic violence?
Coincidence? I think not.
The author Melba Pearson is a prosecutor in South Florida. Follow her on Twitter @ResLegalDiva.