Sanford, Florida - Judge Kenneth Lester Jr has granted $150,000 bond to George Zimmerman charged with 2nd degree murder in the killing of Trayvon Martin. He will be required to wear GPS monitoring, and may be allowed to reside outside the State of Florida.
George Zimmerman was involved in an incident almost two months ago when he was a self-appointed neighborhood watch captain and followed Trayvon Martin who he determined was “suspicious.” It turned out he happened to be a black male wearing a hoodie, heading home from the store unarmed. Zimmerman was armed and somehow a confrontation ensued and Trayvon was shot dead.
Zimmerman will have several restrictions if he is able to make the bond, GPS monitoring, he must report to authorities every three days, no contact with the Martin family, no possession of firearms and no use of controlled substances other than prescribed medication.
The affidavit presented by the state was the determining factor since it is unknown who actually started the fight that lead to Martin’s death. Testimony was revealed in the bond hearing the gunshot that killed Trayvon Martin was at close range. The affidavit indicated that Zimmerman “followed” Martin after he was told by 911 operators not to do so, but it was unclear in the court today how the investigator came to that conclusion.
The state had requested a bond of $1 million and his lawyer Mark O’Mara also requested that his client be allowed to reside outside of the State of Florida, for his own security. Zimmerman’s passport has been turned over to the police, and he must not have any contact with the Martin family.
It will be a few days before Zimmerman is allowed to leave the jail, if the bond it met.
George Zimmerman took the stand today at his bond hearing, and right off the top he said, “I wanted to say I am sorry for the loss of your son, I did not know how old he was, I thought he was a little bit younger than I am, and I did not know if he was armed or not.”
The reason he never apologized earlier, he said “is because I was advised by my lawyers not to respond.” Martin family lawyer Benjamin Crump countered with, “It was a self-serving apology in order to get bail, nine days after his arrest.”