Radio Sandwell African / Caribbean News

George Zimmerman team desperate for more donations

2013-01-30 19:56:12

Defense attorney Mark O'Mara today said that he and client George Zimmerman have spent their way through more than $300,000 in donations and are desperate for more funds.

"The case is out of money," he said.

The defense cannot move forward, for example retain needed experts, without more cash, he said.

He and Zimmerman need about $30,000 a month, according to his website. The defense fund's balance is currently less than $5,000, he said.

O'Mara revamped a website, explaining where all that money has gone.

It shows Zimmerman and his wife, Shellie, have spent more than $61,000 on living expenses.

The fund's biggest outlay was $95,000 given to bail bondsmen who covered his $1 million bail.

Zimmerman is the 29-year-old former Neighborhood Watch volunteer awaiting trial on a second-degree murder charge for killing Trayvon Martin, an unarmed black 17-year-old, in Sanford Feb. 26.

The stress of the case has caused Zimmerman to gain 105 pounds, O'Mara said today.

The defendant, with the help of a brother-in-law, launched the defense fund with a website a few weeks after the shooting.

So far, it has raised more than $314,099.17, O'Mara revealed today. He and co-counsel Don West have not been paid, he said.

O'Mara took control of the fund away from Zimmerman in April, shortly after he learned about it, and placed it under the management of an accountant.

In November, Zimmerman took more control, turning it over to a new manager, redesigning and relaunching its webpage - the pipeline through which the donations come - and promised autographed thank you notes to individual donors.

Zimmerman and his wife have not worked since the shooting and have lived off those donations.

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