Zimmerman Allegedly Threatens Wife With Gun

Estranged wife declines to press charges. What did she tell cops?

Updated: 9/11/13 10:52am, with comments from Zimmerman’s attorney, Mark O’Mara.

By Chris Hoenig

George Zimmerman allegedly threatened this estranged wife, Shellie Zimmerman, with a gun on Monday in Florida.In July, a Florida jury acquitted George Zimmerman of murder in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin. Less than two months later, his estranged wife is letting him off the hook after he allegedly threatened her with a gun.

Shellie Zimmerman, who has filed for divorce from the former neighborhood watch commander, called 911 and told a dispatcher that her husband had his hand on his gun during the dispute and assaulted her father. “He’s threatening all of us with a firearm. … He punched my dad in the nose,” Shellie Zimmerman said on the call. “I don’t know what he’s capable of. I’m really scared.”

Listen to the 911 call below:

She later recanted, telling police that she never saw him with his handgun, and declined to press charges. Her father also declined to press charges. Lake Mary Police spokesman Zach Hudson said no weapon turned up during the initial investigation. “We did not find a gun on his body. We did not find a gun in the house,” he said. “As of right now, there is no gun.”

Confusion over whether Zimmerman was armed continued Tuesday, however, when his attorney, Mark O’Mara, told CNN’s Anderson Cooper that Zimmerman was carrying his gun at the time. “He acted appropriately. He never took the weapon out,” O’Mara said. “The only thing he really did, which is what he told the police, was on the outside of his shirt, he made sure the gun wasn’t moving anywhere and didn’t do anything because Mr. Dean [Zimmerman’s father-in-law] was sort of coming at him, that can sort of be seen in the video.” O’Mara went on to confirm that Zimmerman had the gun on his person, not in a glove box or someplace else nearby.

Police say Zimmerman has been cooperative.

The incident happened at the Lake Mary, Fla., home that the couple shared while in hiding during Zimmerman’s murder trial. Shellie Zimmerman moved out last month but returned with her father, who owns the home, on Monday to collect belongings.

“I know the 911 tape suggests that Shellie was saying something but I think that was heightened emotions,” Zimmerman’s attorney, O’Mara said Monday. “There may have been some pushing and touching. That happens a lot in divorce situations. … Nobody was injured.”

Charges Still Possible

Florida law does allow police to arrest a domestic-violence suspect without a formal complaint from the victim. Surveillance cameras outside the house and dash-cam video from responding officers could provide the evidence needed to arrest Zimmerman. Police say both Shellie and George Zimmerman are accusing the other of being the aggressor and an investigation is under way to sort it all out.

“The call went out as a 911 call that Mr. Zimmerman was threatening them with a firearm,” Hudson said. “We’re trying to see if that’s true or not.”

Lake Mary police ticketed Zimmerman last week for speeding. He was also pulled over for speeding in Texas in the weeks after his acquittal, telling the officer there that he had a gun in the glove compartment.

The gun Zimmerman used to kill Martin in February 2012 remains in police custody. The Justice Department placed a hold on the gun–and other evidence from Zimmerman’s murder trial–while officials consider federal civil-rights charges.

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  • Why am I not surprised at the behavior of both of these two individuals? I wouldn’t be surprised if she exaggerated the situation and I equally wouldn’t be surprised if he did do something threatening.

    He’s the type of individual who needs a gun to feel “brave” and he’s been emboldened by America’s apparent tacit agreement that gunning down unarmed black male teenagers is the thing to do because they are dangerous.

    He’ll be in the news again.

  • This guy is OJ waiting to happen. He obviously has serious issues with his temper and the stupid gun laws in FL won’t take his gun away. Why is it that authorities act ONLY after someone is dead even if there were a thousand clear signals well before the tragedy! It’s always a case of too little too late. This guy clearly shouldn’t be allowed to carry guns. I so wish his wife would press charges, that would go a long way in establishing his trigger happy character.

    • Luke Visconti

      Just to catch you up: Zimmerman, a self-appointed neighborhood watchman, shot and killed Trayvon Martin. Trayvon was doing nothing wrong and due to poor prosecutorial decisions, Zimmerman got away with it. Trayvon was Black—and his tragic death became a centerpiece for a national dialogue regarding racial injustice, “Stand Your Ground” and “Shall Issue” concealed-weapon laws. Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • I’m so sick of this clown. I hope the Florida justice system is completely satisfied. He has taken complete advantage of his “celebrity” status.

  • Not That Surprised

    Im just not surprised at all. I wonder what the jurors are thinking? In their minds…this is all one big misunderstanding and dear ole George was just standing his ground at this home against his wife. Hmmmm….I wonder who will be George’s next victim?

  • Strange how this incident became a “misunderstanding” after lawyers got involved.

  • Diversity issue? Let’s see who were Zimmerman’s victoms so far: black youth, white woman, elderly man… And are we counting Zimmerman as White or Hispanic? The play book is full of diversity issues.

  • If this guy had been any other person, he would have been arrested, or maybe both of them. Having worked with the court system as a victims advocate in Florida, this is usually what happens. The police do not go through such elaborate situations before making the arrest. I have personally seen situation where I thought someone possibly should not have been arrested, but they WERE! Zimmerman is a lucky guy. He seems to be able to escape from his deeds, and apparently can do anything he wants. Not the case with the cases I have been involved with and personally appeared with in court in Florida. I am just appalled and offended.

    • Follow the money. Zimmerman is very important to the fate of the $11 billion (annual) firearm industry, which is deeply reliant on the “stand your ground” and “shall-issue” concealed weapons law. The rise of these laws are directly linked to the amazing growth in firearms sales.

      Zimmerman’s behavior should give pause to any sane person to think about the “stand your ground” laws in particular. I frankly have no problem with lawful people being able to defend themselves – but the “stand your ground” laws – especially ones written like Florida’s – go too far.

      By the way, legal guns aren’t the only component to the gun industries growth – the shootings in Chicago – Newark – Camden – etc., are done by guys illegally possessing and carrying the latest in handgun technology.

      How do they get these illegal weapons? Straw purchases – a person legally buys a quantity of handguns and sells them illegally (there are loopholes for “used” sales). It could all be stopped overnight by forcing the gun manufacturers to be responsible for their sales chain. In other words, they already know exactly which retail outlets are permitting the straw purchases – they can tell by invoices. Just because it’s technically legal, doesn’t mean it’s moral. Bottom line? Zimmerman has powerful people looking after him.

      Think about that for a minute – would you trust your $11 billion industry to Zimmerman’s behavior? It’s almost as bad as having a ex-KGB leader, who feels the destruction of the Soviet Union is huge tragedy, running your foreign policy. Ooops. In an abstract way, this is all very funny. -Luke Visconti, CEO, DiversityInc

  • Anyone else would have been still locked up. Georgie Boy is one lucky Dude. Apparently, he can do ANYTHING he wants. Florida has a pro-prosecution policy meaning when an officer is called to the scene of a domestic violence situation, SOMEONE is going to be arrested, questions answered later in court, but in Zimmerman’s case, he can kill someone and be found innocent, drive recklessly, (get a ticket) punch his father in law in the nose, and allegedly threaten his wife and the father with a gun, AND STILL NOT BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE!!!!! Any other person would still be waiting for their COURT appearance before a judge!!!

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