Vindictive: Now George Zimmerman’s Wife Faces Perjury Charge
In fact, as soon as de la Rionda learned about him, he immediately dropped that line of questioning and never again asked about the account and never asked Shellie to arrange for him to testify by phone. Judge Lester also showed no interest in getting that information, despite the fact that it had a direct bearing on why the hearing was being held.
The remainder of the affidavit contains brief excerpts of the recorded jail conversations between George and Shellie that indicate they spoke about transferring money on several occasions between accounts to pay bills and other living expenses. It also establishes that they had varying amounts of money in various accounts at various times. The prosecution has made much of the fact that they appear to speak in a kind of crude code, avoiding mentioning specific amounts of money. George also cautions Shellie about carrying any amount of money.
Hmm … why would anyone speaking about money on a recorded line in a jail be cautious?
There is nothing illegal or in any way wrong about discussing how to pay one’s bills and expenses, which is precisely what the Zimmermans were doing. It is also smart not to openly discuss such things during phone calls that one knows are being recorded – and with criminals nearby. The Zimmermans could not know who would have access to those recordings or who could overhear their conversations. The “codes” about which the prosecution insinuated were nothing more than the Zimmermans, in terrible circumstances, trying to protect themselves and survive day-to-day.
If de la Rionda was actually interested in the truth, why didn’t he simply arrange for the telephone testimony of the brother-in-law, as Shellie offered?
It appears he was trying to construct a perjury trap.
He -- or Judge Lester -- could have had that information at any time; all they had to do was ask the right person, a person known to them, a person that could have come to the phone to testify.
It appears that the prosecution means to claim that when Shellie testified she did not know the amount in the Internet account, or that they were essentially destitute, she was lying. There is no question that there was money available from that account, yet it is clear that everyone involved was treating that money as separate from the Zimmermans' normal assets, and Shellie never denied that there was money in the Internet account -- only that she didn’t know its balance. In addition, the prosecution did not identify -- has never identified -- any specific statement made by Shellie they believe to be false, nor have they explained why she believed it to be false as she said it.
This is not difficult; they have a transcript. De la Rionda’s questions lacked the necessary specificity to establish matters of objective fact.
Perhaps this charge was brought as a trump card, as something to hold over George’s head to induce him to plead guilty or to accept a plea bargain. Perhaps it was nothing more than cruel harassment, or even intended to utterly impoverish the Zimmermans -- the state has bottomless coffers -- and break their will. Now that the special prosecutor has lost the case against George, perhaps they hunger to convict Shellie at any cost, to somehow harm the Zimmermans. Angela Corey’s reputation for vindictiveness is, after all, the stuff of Florida legend.
Ultimately the special prosecutor enters another felony trial as they did George Zimmerman’s trial: unable to fulfill the elements of the crime. We have another backward case where the defense will argue the law and the facts, and where the prosecution will argue that Shellie Zimmerman should be convicted because they say so.
Unlike George’s trial, there is no race card to be played. One can only hope that justice will prevail in this case as well.