- By Mark Strassmann
Zimmerman was granted bond at a hearing Friday because Seminole County Circuit Court Judge Kenneth Lester was persuaded he was not a flight risk and, despite Zimmerman’s killing of Martin, believed he posed no threat to his community.
Lawyers worked out the conditions and security restrictions of Zimmerman’s release Saturday, as well as the precautions for his safety. It’s possible he could stay outside Florida while awaiting trial. And it’s all but certain his location will be kept secret.
George Zimmerman was release to an undisclosed location this weekend.
Zimmerman surprised the courtroom Friday — especially Trayvon Martin’s parents — when he walked to the stand in shackles to apologize for shooting the unarmed teenager.
“I wanted to say I am sorry for the loss of your son,” Zimmerman stated. “I didn’t know his age. I thought he was a little bit younger than I am. I did not know whether he was armed or not.”
A lawyer for Trayvon Martin’s family, Benjamin Crump, told “CBS This Morning: Saturday” co-hosts Jeff Glor and Rebecca Jarvis the family is “very disheartened” at the prospect of Zimmerman getting out of jail. He says they found Zimmerman’s apology “very insincere” and “self-serving,” and they suspect it came with “ulterior motives.” Before the family accepts any apology, Crump says, Zimmerman has to tell the truth about what happened when he shot Trayvon because, they feel, he’s given numerous different accounts so far.
Zimmerman’s lawyer, Mark O’Mara, grilled a state investigator on the stand.
Dan Gilbreath admitted under oath that prosecutors had many questions about the shooting they could not answer.
“Any evidence that conflicts, eyewitnesses anything, that conflicts with the contention that Mr. Martin assaulted first?” O’Mara asked.
“As to who threw the first blow? No,” Gilbreath responded.
“Do you know who started the fight?”
“Do I know? No.”
“Do you have any evidence that supports who may have started the fight?”
Martin’s parents left the hearing without comment, unhappy with Zimmerman’s bond and with his apology.
Martin family attorney Natalie Jackson told reporters, “This was the most disingenuous and unfair thing I’ve seen this was the most unmeaningful apology.”
O’Mara insisted to reporters that Zimmerman “had always wanted to acknowledge what happened that day. … I was hoping it could be accomplished in a private way. We weren’t afforded that opportunity.”
Wherever he goes, Zimmerman has to meet certain restrictions: No alcohol, no drugs, no guns. A curfew. A GPS ankle monitor. And no contact with Trayvon Martin’s family.
To see Mark Strassmann’s full report, click on the video in the player above.
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