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Zimmerman Not a Threat, Should Get Bail: Lawyer

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By Andrew Chow, Esq. on June 25, 2012 5:56 PM

George Zimmerman's bail request should be granted, as the accused murderer "accepts responsibility" for allowing the court to be misled about his finances, his attorney argues in a new motion.

Zimmerman's lawyer Mark O'Mara filed the motion ahead of a bail hearing set for Friday, when O'Mara will again try to secure his client's release pending trial, the Orlando Sentinel reports. A trial date has not yet been set.

In a Motion to Set Reasonable Bond, O'Mara argues Florida's state Constitution practically requires Zimmerman's pretrial release.

O'Mara asserts that under Florida's Constitution, "every person charged with a crime ... shall be entitled to pretrial release on reasonable conditions" except in certain situations, such as when:

  • The person is charged with a capital (death penalty) offense, or
  • The person faces life imprisonment "and the proof of guilt is evident or the presumption is great."

As applied to George Zimmerman's bail request, the 28-year-old neighborhood watch captain could face life imprisonment if he's convicted of second-degree murder in Trayvon Martin's killing. But O'Mara apparently believes there's no "presumption" or "proof" of guilt to prevent Zimmerman's pretrial release.

Florida's Constitution also allows bail to be denied unless there are "reasonable protections" to prevent physical harm to others, to ensure the defendant will appear in court, or to assure the integrity of the judicial process.

That's why O'Mara is asking for bail conditions "similar to those imposed before," such as GPS monitoring, the Sentinel reports. Zimmerman "does not pose a risk of harm to the community nor is he a flight risk," O'Mara argues in his motion.

George Zimmerman's bail was initially set at $150,000 in April, when his wife Shellie testified the couple was broke. But a judge revoked bail June 1, after he found Shellie had lied to the court about $150,000 in online donations. Shellie Zimmerman now faces a perjury charge, and is free on bond.

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