Tuesday, 17 July 2012
George Zimmerman And Sexual Abuse
The woman, who was not a witness to the killing of Trayvon Martin, made her explosive statement to investigators for the state attorney in March, a month after the shooting.
He is out on $1 million bond. A judge had revoked his previous $150,000 bond in June when prosecutors showed that Zimmerman and his wife, Shellie, tried to hide their assets from the court.
The woman's 27-minute recorded interview is part of evidence released by prosecutor Angela Corey's office.
The woman, who said she is a relative of Zimmerman, recounts incidents that she said began when she was 6 and he was 8. She said the relationship began when she and her sister went to stay with Zimmerman and his family.
Zimmerman's attorney, Mark O'Mara, had argued that the interview should not be released. O'Mara wrote in a motion that the statement "is not relevant" to the shooting death of Trayvon Martin and would "serve to reignite and potentially enhance the widespread public hostility toward Mr. Zimmerman."
The woman, whose identity has not been disclosed, said her family and Zimmerman's family were always together.
She said the last incident occurred when she was 16 and they were both in a house his family owned in Lake Mary, Fla. She said he told her to lay on a bed, then laid down next to her and tried to massage her.
The woman said that in 2005, when she was 20, she told her sister that "something happened," but didn't provide details. Her sister told her parents, who confronted Zimmerman. At the time, he allegedly said, "I'm sorry," but they never discussed it further, she said.
Zimmerman's family wanted to sweep everything under the rug, the woman said. The families still got together, but she said Zimmerman stopped attending many of those functions.
She said she came forward now because, "For the first time in my life, I'm not afraid of him."
The woman told Sanford police in a telephone interview released in May that Zimmerman and his family are racist against blacks. In that interview, she refused to identify herself.
"Growing up he and his family always made statements that they did not like black people unless they act white," she told police.
But she said she never saw Zimmerman do anything specific that showed he was racist.