By Rob Janicki
An interesting turn of events in the George Zimmerman-Trayvon Martin homicide case occurred on Friday. In a somewhat unusual action, George Zimmerman's attorney was compelled to appear before a Florida judge on a complaint from the state prosecutors in the widely publicized case. On Monday Zimmerman had been released on a $150,000 bail bond with $15,000 cash up front and the remainder in committed security for the balance. it's been reported elsewhere that the Zimmerman family posted the security interest portion of the bail bond, placing the entire family at financial risk and adding additional pressure on George Zimmerman to fulfill the conditions of the bail bond.
The prosecutors, possibly at the insistence of the Martin family thru their attorney, sought an increase in Zimmerman's bail bond, when it was found that he had raised a reported $200,000 over the Internet. The argument to increase Zimmerman's bail bond was based upon Zimmerman's original declaration that he was essentially indigent and unable to meet a higher bail bond amount. The change in Zimmerman's financial situation, reported on Thursday, was enough to provide prosecutors with probable cause to seek a rehearing on Zimmerman's bail bond status.
What is interesting is that the original bail bond amount was consistent with the average bail bond for a similar second degree murder charge in Florida. The purpose of a bail bond is to reasonably assure the court that the defendant will return for trial or any hearings before the actual trial. The bail bond is usually not based upon what a defendant can afford, but rather that the amount set will be sufficient to guarantee the defendant's appearance in all court matters.
[...] A Florida judge has ruled against raising George Zimmerman's bail bond, despite a complaint he had not disclosed some $200,000 from donors. Judge Kenneth Lester said he needed more information about the fundraising before he could reconsider the bond. [...]
Zimmerman thus remains out of jail on the original bail bond with an ankle mounted electronic transmitting device to allow authorities to monitor his location at all times. Zimmerman's actual location is being kept secret for his personal safety, as he and his family members have received numerous documented death threats.
Expect another bail bond hearing early this coming week to determine what effect, if any, an increase in Zimmerman's finances will have on the possibility of a bail bond increase. It may have no effect or it may result in an increase in the original bail bond amount. I would be surprised if the bail bond was completely revoked based upon some argument that Zimmerman sought to commit perjury in his statements at the original bail bond hearing.