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Zimmerman Charged With Assault, Released on Bond

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By Brett Snider, Esq. on November 19, 2013 3:33 PM

George Zimmerman was in court Tuesday on aggravated assault charges based on allegations that he pointed a gun at his girlfriend during a fight on Monday.

According to The Associated Press, Zimmerman was slapped with the assault charge for allegedly pointing a shotgun at girlfriend Samantha Scheibe after she demanded that he leave her house.

Zimmerman was released Tuesday afternoon on bond, but what lies ahead for the notorious Floridian?

Felony Assault Charge for Shotgun Threat

Putting another person in fear of harm with a deadly weapon -- including a shotgun -- typically falls under the crime of aggravated assault. As Zimmerman was reminded in Seminole County Court on Tuesday, aggravated assault is a third degree felony which can land a convicted defendant in prison for up to five years.

In addition to his felony charge, the acquitted killer of Trayvon Martin was also charged with battery and criminal mischief, reports the AP -- likely for allegedly pushing his girlfriend and damaging her property.

The Orlando Sentinel reports that Zimmerman was represented in court by Jeff Dowdy and Daniel Megaro from the Sanford Public Defender's office, with Dowdy stating that "Zimmerman has $2.5 million in debts." Most of this money is owed to attorney Mark O'Mara and Zimmerman's legal team from the Trayvon Martin trial, although the Sunshine State had to foot the bill for Zimmerman's legal expenses.

This latest hearing is one stop in a history of domestic violence allegations for Zimmerman -- a fact he may mull over while he's out on bond.

Bond Conditions on Zimmerman's Release

Zimmerman was released on a $9,000 bond, with prosecutors arguing for a higher bail amount. CNN reports that Assistant State Attorney Lymary Munoz argued for "$50,000 bail" based on additional allegations that he tried to choke Sheibe a week and a half prior to his arrest.

Judge Fred Scott considered Zimmerman's danger to the public and others when setting his bail at $9,000, which was almost double the amount suggested by defense counsel.

CNN reports that as part of Zimmerman's release on bail, Judge Scott ordered that Zimmerman must:

  • Not possess any weapons,
  • Refrain from contacting Scheibe in any manner,
  • Stay away from Scheibe's house,
  • Wear a location monitoring device, and
  • Stay in Florida.

Zimmerman's next court date is set for January 7, when he's scheduled to be arraigned on his charges.

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