WASHINGTON, D.C. (PRWEB) July 10, 2012
The trial of George Zimmerman in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin has taken another important step towards an eventual resolution. Zimmerman was released on $1 million bond late last week, according to the Los Angeles Times, after intial hearings seemed to indicate that the figure would be set closer to $100,000. According to federal criminal attorney David Benowitz of Price Benowitz LLP, the decision to temporarily free him is very beneficial to his case.
“Any time you have someone who is locked up, and they have the opportunity to get out, it is such a benefit to them because they can help in the investigation," Mr. Benowitz during a recent appearance on TBD's Newstalk. "The public perception, particularly in this case of Mr. Zimmerman, is going to be so much better now that he is not incarcerated. You don’t have the pictures, of someone in an orange jumpsuit at a jail getting led around in handcuffs. It’s just so much better for him."
But the decision to release Zimmerman on bond, specifically because of the price of his potentially temporary freedom, could also be trouble for his defense team. The fund to represent Zimmerman is almost empty, and the Examiner reports that Zimmerman’s lawyer Mark O’Mara claims that his defense will, “only go as deep as his pockets.”
As a result, and via that Examiner article, O’Mara has reached out to the public encouraging them to donate money to Zimmerman’s defense fund. He appeals to individuals that either agree with Zimmerman’s actions, or at the very least his constitutional right to act as he did. There was a tremendous amount of public outrage directed towards Zimmerman when the incident first happens, it remains to be seen how much money he will be able to generate from the public. But the decision to reach out at all adds an interesting wrinkle to this case.
“Normally at the beginning of the criminal case, an attorney is either privately retained, they’re appointed by the court, or they take the case pro bono.” Says federal criminal lawyer Jennifer Mayer of the Law Offices of Jennifer Mayer. “It’s highly unusual to be in the middle of representing someone, and seeking funding for the defense.“
Because this case is unusual, it is difficult to determine what it says about the state of Zimmerman’s defense. Ms. Mayer believes it exhibits a sense of confidence from O’Mara. “That he would publicly seek funding, he certainly believes that there are enough people that support his client, that would respond to his request and supply funding.”
Price Benowitz LLP Is a Washington D.C. based law firm with offices in Maryland and Virginia. They represent clients in all matters of criminal defense and personal injury cases.