SANFORD (CBSMiami/AP) – The wife of George Zimmerman, the man acquitted of murder charges in the fatal shooting of Trayvon Martin, was sentenced Wednesday to a year’s probation and 100 hours of community service.
Shellie Zimmerman pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor perjury charge for lying during a bail hearing after her husband’s arrest.
Shellie, now charged with felony perjury, lied about the couple’s assets during the bail hearing following her husband’s arrest after he fatally shot, claiming self-defense, unarmed Miami Gardens teen Trayvon Martin in February 2012.
If Zimmerman’s wife is convicted, she can face up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.
According to court records, in the days before the bond hearing in June of 2012, Shellie Zimmerman transferred $74,000, broken into eight smaller transfers ranging from $7,500 to $9,990, from her husband’s credit union account to her own. Also, a total of $47,000 was transferred from George Zimmerman’s account to his sister’s in the days before the bond hearing. Amounts of over $10,000 would have been reported to the Internal Revenue Service.
Four days after he was released on bond, Shellie Zimmerman transferred more than $85,500 from her account into her husband’s account, records show. They also show that the jail recorded George Zimmerman instructing her on a call to “pay off all the bills,” including an American Express and Sam’s Club card.
Most of the money had come from donations to a website that had been set up to pay for George Zimmerman’s defense.
At the bail hearing, Shellie Zimmerman testified that the couple, who married in 2007, had limited funds for bail because she was a full-time student and her husband wasn’t working. Prosecutors say they actually had then already raised $135,000 in donations from the website.
Shellie Zimmerman was asked about the website at the hearing, but she said she didn’t know how much money had been raised. A judge set George Zimmerman’s bail at $150,000 bail, and he was freed a few days later after posting $15,000 in cash — which is typical.
After Shellie Zimmerman’s false statements were discovered, the judge revoked her husband’s bail. He was later released on $1 million bond.
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