Lawyers for George Zimmerman Craig Sonner and Hal Uhrig held a press conference on Tuesday afternoon to announce that they have dropped him as a client, saying, "We have lost contact--he no longer returns phone calls."
Uhrig said that Zimmerman is out there doing things on his own without consulting or speaking with his legal team, referring to the recent website set up where Trayvon's shooter was begging for donations to help him pay for living expenses.
Lawyer Sonner said he heard that Zimmerman had contacted the State prosecution office and spoken to Fox's Sean Hannity but that his client had not spoken to him in days. He said because of this lack of communication, "it would not be ethical to continue to represent him as his attorney."
Sonner said he still believes the neighborhood watchman was acting in self-defense but Zimmerman has not returned his texts, phone-calls or emails in two days.
Uhrig added that their former client is under immense pressure for he cannot even walk outside or go down to a 7-Eleven to "buy a diet soda." On the question of whether Zimmerman was still in the country, his lawyers said yes he was, even if they said earlier-on that they didn't know where he is and had never met him in person.
Sonner said the death threats prevented him from meeting his client face to face but that they had face-to-face meetings set up.
Uhrig said the fact that they had never met their client was a bit unusual for other cases but perfectly understandable for this one given the volatility. They hinted that Zimmerman may have broken mentally under the stress. On the issue of money being a factor in their withdrawal, both lawyers say they have not been paid but money wasn't the reason for the parting of ways.
Sonner said Zimmerman hasn't been arrested so they were working pro bono until or if such time as an arrest was imminent.
28-year-old George Zimmerman shot and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin on Feb. 26 in Sanford, Fla. To date, he has not been charged for the shooting death of the teen, which has caused widespread outrage, protests, marches and online petitions. The Grand Jury scheduled for Tuesday was cancelled by special prosecutor Angela Corey.
Trayvon's parents Sybrina and Tracy Martin's lead attorney Benjamin Crump told CNN on Monday that his clients were hoping for justice and did not see the cancellation of the Grand Jury as a bad sign.
Zimmerman claimed self-defense under Florida's controversial Stand Your Ground law in the killing of unarmed teen Trayvon, who reportedly only had a bag of candy and an iced tea when he was fatally shot in the chest. Several conflicting versions of what happened on that tragic night have surfaced. Eyewitnesses, an earwitness, and witnesses who called 911, along with the released 911 tapes all paint the same picture while Zimmerman, his father, brother and friend. have given varying versions.
Those closest to what happened, the neighbors who called for help and ran outside, say Zimmerman was on Trayvon's back as he lay facedown in the grass dead. The latest eyewitness who spoke to CNN's Anderson Cooper also said Zimmerman was on top of the dead teen.
However the shooter's father Robert Zimmerman, a retired judge said in an interview that his son did what he had to do to survive. Brother Robert Jr. told CNN's Piers Morgan that is brother fought for his life because the 17-year-old, unarmed teen was about to kill the armed neighborhood watchman or injure him so badly as to reduce him " to wearing diapers for the rest of his life."
The Trayvon family lawyer Crump have said repeatedly that the 16-year-old girlfriend of Trayvon had been on the phone with him approximately 7:12 p.m and 4 minutes later, he was dead. Police did not interview this valuable earwitness for over a month--don't know if they have now.
A released police surveillance video showed Zimmerman with a cut to the back of the head but he did not appear to be badly hurt. He was allowed to go free that same night after State Prosecutor Norm Wolfinger reportedly ordered the Sanford police to do so. He was not taken to a hospital even though his brother told Piers Morgan that Zimmerman's head had busted open after Trayvon supposedly banged it on the pavement. Notably, all witnesses said the teen was laying dead on the grass, not the sidewalk.
To read some of my previous articles on the Trayvon tragedy, click links below: