WFSU News Team
Mon June 18, 2012
Prosecutor Releases Tapes of Zimmerman’s Jail Calls
The Prosecutor in the Trayvon Martin case released tapes of six recorded phone conversations Monday that Martin’s shooter, George Zimmerman, had with his wife while in jail.The tapes show Zimmerman talking to his wife about transferring money from an account linked to a website created to raise funds for Zimmerman’s legal defense.
Zimmerman, the self-proclaimed neighborhood watch volunteer who shot 17 year-old Trayvon Martin back in February, was released on a $150,000 bond in April, but that bond has since been revoked. The judge in the case, said Zimmerman and his wife lied to the court about the money collected from the website and spoke “in code” during jail phone calls, to cover it up. Here’s an excerpt from one of the calls between Zimmerman and his wife Shellie. The two are talking about transferring the funds.
Zimmerman: “I asked Ken to double up on it. Do, you know, $10 in the morning and $10 in the evening and that way you can take ten for you and ten for her, for Susie.”
Shellie: “Why can’t Ken do both of them?”
Zimmerman: “Because he can only take from Peter Pan to mine.”
Shellie: “Okay, right so I need to do that.”
On the tapes the couple also talks about the website’s success. Zimmerman said it feels good knowing so many people in America care.
"So many people, just your site kept crashing because people were trying to give you words of support and kindness," Zimmerman's wife Shellie said.
The prosecutor in the case said the phone calls show Zimmerman and has wife knew about the roughly $135,000 raised through the site.
The calls also detail Zimmerman’s plans to evade the media and anyone else who might have wanted to find him after he originally made bail. Here he is again talking with his wife Shellie.
Zimmerman: “I’m thinking that we should rent an SUV and who ever can pick me up in the SUV and that way if they run the tags or whatever there’s nothing to go back on anyone. And, if you can, find a hotel that has an attached garage. Remember when we stayed at the Western in Tampa.”
Shellie: “Oh there was a garage. But our safety council was saying an airport.”
Zimmerman: “Well the airport is good but they can still follow you there.”
Zimmerman suggests a car switch—to another rental—inside the garage. Shellie wonders about people seeing him through the car windows, but Zimmerman said he’s not worried. Reminding her "I have my hoodie."
Zimmerman also asks his wife to get a bullet proof vest and to have one on hand for him. Zimmerman’s wife, Shellie, has been charged with perjury for lying about their finances. Mr. Zimmerman is expected to be up for a second bond hearing next week.