Prosecutors on Monday released audiotapes and transcripts of six phone calls between George and Shellie Zimmerman, all placed while George was in a Sanford jail awaiting a bond hearing.
The calls, placed between April 15 and April 18 — two days before Zimmerman was granted a $150,000 bond, which has since been revoked — showed the couple in loving conversation, and Shellie Zimmerman making an accounting to her husband of the bills she’s paid, the arrangements their “security expert” has been making, and what prosecutors say are coded references to approximately $135,000 collected in a PayPal account connected to George Zimmerman’s website.
The judge in the case revoked Zimmerman’s bond after prosecutors accused Shellie Zimmerman of misleading the court about the couple’s finances. Bank records show Shellie Zimmerman transferred large sums from the PayPal account to her checking account in several transactions up to the day before the April 20 bond hearing.
Among the revelations in the calls:
- George Zimmerman counseled his wife, and his attorney, Mark O’Mara, to purchase bulletproof vests, out of concern for their security.
- In an April 15 call, George Zimmerman instructed his wife on how to change the passcodes to his account, so that she could gain access. Prosecutors say he did so in order to facilitate moving money from the PayPal account to Shellie Zimmerman’s credit union account.
- Shellie Zimmerman said during one of the calls that the website George Zimmerman created prior to his arrest “kept crashing” because so many people were logging on to wish him well. Zimmerman expresses happiness at the support, and says those people need to “vocalize themselves more.”
- George Zimmerman reveals that he is taking Adderall, a drug commonly prescribed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
During a call on April 17, two days before the bond hearing, George and Shellie discuss how he’d like to be picked up from jail if he is able to get bond. The two discuss renting two SUVs and whether or not the windows can be tinted. Shellie Zimmerman suggests that might not be necessary, because George could simply “lie down” in the back of one, to which George answers, “well I’ll have my hoodie,” followed by what sounds like a muffled laugh.
Trayvon Martin wore a hoodie on the night he was shot to death by Zimmerman in February. Hoodies have become a charged symbol not just for the shooting, but in the minds of many African-Americans, for the stereotyping of black men.
George Zimmerman is charged with second degree murder in the Trayvon Martin killing. A new bond hearing is set for June 29th.