The State of Florida has responded to Mark O’Mara’s Motion to disqualify Judge Kenneth Lester in George Zimmerman’s second-degree murder case. Zimmerman counsel filed a motion Friday, 7/13/212, asking Judge Lester to recuse himself because they believe the judge to be biased against Zimmerman.
In the motion, O’Mara writes, “The Court chose language in its July 5, 2012 Order to describe the Defendant in ways that reflect the Court’s opinion of Mr. Zimmerman’s character as much as his conduct.” The defense’s objections were to Judge Lester’s ruling, which granted Zimmerman a new bond in the amount of $1 million. This was AFTER George Zimmerman’s first bond of $150K was revoked due to George & Shellie Zimmerman intentionally lying to the court about finances the couple had available at the time of the original bond hearing.
In Judge Lester’s ruling, he stated that George Zimmerman “flaunted the system.” It is this language to which O’Mara objected, but we all know that it is fact. Claiming indigence to receive a lower bond is truly flaunting the system. But, not only did the Zimmermans mislead the court, it now appears that Mark O’Mara himself may have known the couple was not indigent at the time of George Zimmerman’s initial bond hearing.
We must remember that O’Mara’s motion to remove Judge Lester from the case came just after the court ruled that a statement by Witness #9 accusing Zimmerman of molesting her and 145 calls between George & Shellie Zimmerman while he was awaiting the bond hearing. So, only after the ruling that now shows the public the potential involvement of Mark O’Mara in concealing funds from the court did the defense think of Judge Lester as biased.
Today, 07/17/2012, the State of Florida filed a Response To Defendant’s Verified Motion To Disqualify Trial Judge (read full text at the end of this article), stating “If a party doesn’t like a court’s findings that doesn’t mean they have a right to ask for a new judge.” They go on to say that O’Mara’s motion is “devoid of legal merit” and “One might ponder the motive for including irrelevant material in such a Motion; is the design merely to get sympathy for Defendant and/or to prejudice potential jurors?”
The motion to disqualify Judge Lester is to prejudice potential jurors. Mark O’Mara, on many occasions, has spoken about the jury pool possibly being tainted by the media, against his client. He knows the role that information seen/heard by the public plays in shaping the opinions of potential jurors, and it is evidenced by George Zimmerman’s own admission in the same call that he states O’Mara knew about the attempted transfer of $37K before the bond hearing. Mark O’Mara wants jurors to be biased toward his client, and that is why he launched the defense website–where he releases evidence he thinks is favorable to Zimmerman–and why he makes appearances in the media himself. The state points to some of his various media appearances and Zimmerman’s defense website on page 8 of their response.
Also, Judge Lester’s ruling on bond was made AFTER the bond hearing. It was during that hearing that the defense refused to allow George Zimmerman to take the stand after determining that cross-examination could not be thwarted. O’Mara admitted that his client’s credibility was shot, but did not call him to the stand because he would have to face questions about his credibility. Judge Lester’s ruling was an testament to that fact, and the language that says Zimmerman flauted the system was true at the time of the second bond ruling. So, Lester responded accordingly. The state even goes as far as to say about O’Mara’s motion that “he omits mention of the fact that when presented the actual opportunity to testify (at his second bond hearing) regarding the very matter germane to his credibility, he declined to do so.”
The State argues that claims of bias are unfounded, because “the Court has TWICE granted him bond in this high-profile homicide case” and “Defendant has been permitted to live outside the State of Florida, to have witnesses testify telephonically, and to appear in court in civilian clothing and without shackles even while he was incarcerated,” which point to granting Zimmerman “benefits not ordinarily enjoyed by the criminal accused.” It seems that Lester has been leaning more toward the side of Zimmerman, if you consider all of the priviledges given to him.
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As always, we urge you to view the evidence for yourself, instead of relying on the media to filter this information to you with their spin. In accordance with our goal of providing all of the files (audio, video, documents, etc.) associated with the Trayvon Martin / George Zimmerman case, we’ve posted George Zimmerman’s statements to the police so that you can hear them for yourself.
Because we feel that it is important to go straight to the source for information, we have done exactly that. We house many files associated with the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin Case at a site we created strictly for that purpose, TheyAlwaysGetAway.Com. The site includes court documents, motions, pictures, audio, and video. Take a look for yourself, and stay in the know and abreast!
View STATE’S RESPONSE TO DEFENDANT’S VERIFIED MOTION TO DISQUALIFY TRIAL JUDGE