George Zimmerman Arrested for Domestic Violence
Domestic violence can occur even with high-profile individuals. George Zimmerman attracted national attention in 2012 following the confrontation that resulted in the death of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin. After a protracted legal battle, a jury held Zimmerman not guilty of second-degree murder. Recently, however, Zimmerman is back in the news with allegations of domestic violence.
Victim’s Hesitation to Press Charges
Police first learned of the alleged domestic violence incident near midnight in early January when officers heard smashing glass and saw a vehicle speed out of Zimmerman’s driveway with no headlights. The officers pulled the car over for a traffic stop and encountered a distressed woman and a car packed with her belongings. The victim, Zimmerman’s girlfriend of two to three months, claimed that Zimmerman is a “psychopath” who wanted to “take their relationship further than she wanted.” She further stated that Zimmerman smashed a cell phone and threw a wine bottle at her when she attempted to leave. The incident was precipitated by an argument about a painting. Further details on the argument are unknown, although Zimmerman has sold his own art for as high as $10,000 following his not-guilty verdict in the high-profile Martin case.
Police noted that Zimmerman’s girlfriend did not want to be involved further, even if it meant not advocating for herself as a domestic violence victim. Many victims of domestic abuse can be conflicted about whether to take action. In this case, police continued to investigate the matter. Zimmerman was not reached until four days later when, in early January, he was arrested by Lake Mary police officers and incarcerated under suspicion of aggravated assault and domestic violence with a weapon. The following morning, a Florida judge ordered Zimmerman to abstain from contacting the victim or from entering Volusia County. Zimmerman was further instructed to turn over any firearms to a third party. No allegations of alcohol abuse were made, and no further restrictions were applied at this time. Zimmerman posted the $5,000 bail.
History of Domestic Abuse Builds Record
Incidents of domestic violence that result in serious injury are often precipitated by prior abuses. In this case, Zimmerman already had a history of alleged domestic violence, including smashing his then-wife’s iPad during a fight and being charged with pointing a gun at one girlfriend. Significantly, he was arrested for domestic violence in November of 2013 on allegations of aggravated assault, criminal mischief, and misdemeanor counts of domestic violence battery of a now-former girlfriend. Zimmerman willingly posted the $9,000 bail and the charges were subsequently dropped, but the incident helps provide context and history for the incident at issue. If you or someone you know has been a victim of “minor” domestic abuse, you should be aware that seeking help can ensure that courts have recorded evidence of a pattern of abuse.
If you are hesitant to take action about a domestic violence incident, you should be aware that this feeling can be common among victims of domestic abuse. However, building a record of even “minor” domestic abuses can arm the courts to take action later. A Miami domestic violence attorney at the Law Office of Julia Kefalinos, Attorney, P.A. can provide you with compassionate support and an understanding of your legal options.