Shellie Zimmerman Files for Divorce

Shellie Zimmerman's lawyer today announced she has filed for divorce.

John Donnelly, a family friend who testified in George Zimmerman's defense at his trial, told Reuters that Shellie was "devastated" when her husband "just packed up and left" after his acquittal and was gone for a month without telling anyone his whereabouts. Shellie had lost touch with him and had grown increasingly upset.

The divorce petition is here.

(No character attacks on anyone please. They will be deleted.)

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    Trial didn't clear Zimmerman's name. (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by redwolf on Thu Sep 05, 2013 at 10:47:46 PM EST
    I think George and Shelly thought getting all the evidence out at the trial would end the smears and lies being told about them.  Instead the volume was turned up to 11 after the acquittal.  People continued lying about the evidence and even made up new lies to smear George.  

    Everything I've read about George indicated that he was a good guy who spent a lot of time helping people.  Having thousands of random strangers hating him because he defended himself when Travyon tried to kill him probably destroyed his world.  Irrational hate has a heavy price in people's lives.  Too bad the left never practices what it's preaches about hate.

    Is this an implication... (none / 0) (#4)
    by Thanin on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 12:26:43 AM EST
    That the right practices what it preaches about hate?

    I agree about the pressure (none / 0) (#7)
    by TeresaInPa on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 06:39:58 AM EST
    on the Zimmerman's marriage.  However I think the left often practices what it preaches about hate.  Of course the right never preaches against hate so it is excused from ever practicing non-hate.

    Not a suprising development (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by scribe on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 04:07:19 AM EST
    Many marriages do not survive acquittals - the stress of a criminal prosecution and trial is often enough to destroy even solid-and-stable-seeming marriages.

    I'd suspect the insurance and financial issues raised in comments upthread are included to meet the requirements of state law as they pertain to division of property under whatever name the state chooses to use - equitable distribution, community property, etc.

    For better or for worse... (5.00 / 0) (#41)
    by turbo6 on Sat Sep 07, 2013 at 02:36:52 PM EST
    Even if the marriage was a bit troubled, a situation like this would inevitably destroy it. Though, I feel bad for George, the evidence was never for a conviction. He walked but his name is forever toxic. His ability to earn a living and live any semblance of a normal life is gone. Shellie could walk away, find a career, remarry. She doesn't have the same stigma he has and can eventually go to a regular life.

    Whatever George makes from lawsuits, media deals will likely be a major portion of what he has to live on for quite some time. Obviously expenses for his safety will be needed for some time, especially for the next few years.

    A divorce is understandable, but this comes off as a bit greedy on her part.

    George Zimmerman is in (5.00 / 1) (#56)
    by oculus on Mon Sep 09, 2013 at 02:27:40 PM EST
    "Investigative custody" in FL. Domestic disturbance. CNN

    I am now officially adding (4.25 / 4) (#24)
    by Anne on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 03:26:21 PM EST
    "Shellie Zimmerman" and "George Zimmerman" to the list of "People I Could Happily Live the Rest of My Life Without Ever Hearing Another Word About."

    There is definitely hope. Not very many (5.00 / 2) (#25)
    by oculus on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 03:54:11 PM EST
    comments here. But, then again, if commenters are verboten to character assassinate, why bother?

    if you aren't interested (none / 0) (#54)
    by Jeralyn on Mon Sep 09, 2013 at 01:19:44 PM EST
    just scroll on by.

    Score another "victory" (1.00 / 3) (#9)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 08:48:56 AM EST
     for that race hustler Al Sharpton.

    F*ckin' Shapton... (5.00 / 4) (#10)
    by kdog on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 08:56:02 AM EST
    I'm pretty sure he's behind the ice melting in the Artic too...a regular Lex Luthor that guy.

    I hear ya, kdog. (5.00 / 3) (#20)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 01:53:18 PM EST
    Next thing you know, the Rev. Al will be trying to convince us that people of color really DON'T like standing in long line for six-plus hours to vote ...

    One wee point (5.00 / 5) (#11)
    by MO Blue on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 09:04:39 AM EST
    Shelle Zimmerman left her home on Feb. 25, 2012 because of marital problems prior to any action taken by Al Sharpton.



    Mo (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by CoralGables on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 09:22:01 AM EST
    Pretty sure you and I could talk on this topic and never disagree on anything.

    Aint't that the truth (5.00 / 1) (#21)
    by MO Blue on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 02:00:42 PM EST
    {Smiley face} cause it sure isn't snark

    Isn't the point in the post (none / 0) (#17)
    by Towanda on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 12:40:39 PM EST
    not when they both left their home but when George Zimmerman did not return home?

    In family court in Florida (none / 0) (#18)
    by CoralGables on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 01:03:14 PM EST
    it won't make a bit of difference. Unless they want to pay attorneys to fight over custody of the dogs, there will be a negotiated split of marital assets or a judge will split them and it's over and done.

    With no children involved and based on her filing, it can be over in 30 minutes (or less) as soon as she wants to set a court date and he doesn't even have to show up.


    They Mentioned on the Radio... (none / 0) (#22)
    by ScottW714 on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 02:37:05 PM EST
    ...she's currently getting four grand a month for living expenses from his defense fund.  Not sure if that is fact.

    Also if there is a book/movie deal, there could be millions at stake with neither being able to have a reliable future income.

    I assume that the Martins are going to try and sue for wrongful death or future income loss, which may or may not be successful.


    I know (none / 0) (#29)
    by Towanda on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 05:53:08 PM EST
    all too well how family court works, sigh.

    But I wasn't speaking to in the courts, only "in the post" by BTD.


    Wasn't meant nasty (none / 0) (#31)
    by CoralGables on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 06:37:59 PM EST
    Was going to type that Florida divorce law is the same as SYG. It's no fault, but figured that would stir crap. :)

    What the hell, I'll finish my thought now. Florida divorce is sign and be done, even if you may have spent 30 days checking out your groupies.


    I'm a little bit confused (none / 0) (#33)
    by MO Blue on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 06:55:34 PM EST
    AAA's comment implied that the Zimmerman's divorce was caused by Al Sharpton. My comment was a reply to AAA and not a comment regarding the initial post.

    The facts indicate that the Zimmerman's were having marital problems prior to the shooting, the media blitz and the trial. No doubt these events put additional stress on the marriage but there is no way of knowing whether or not the marriage would have survived without them or for that matter Al Sharpton.


    I'm not surprised (none / 0) (#1)
    by AmericanPsycho on Thu Sep 05, 2013 at 10:45:48 PM EST
    While nobody knows the dirty details between the two during the trial but if she ever wants to have children (as hinted to in that ridiculous ABC interview) then she can't really believe that will ever happen living with George.

    Please explain some (none / 0) (#3)
    by Mikado Cat on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 12:20:24 AM EST
    of the issues in the filing if anybody knows.

    What is with the life insurance, and who would be crazy enough to issue George life insurance at a reasonable rate?

    Is the defense fund subject to splitting?

    What about future awards like the ABC/NBC suits?

    Shelly seems to have some chance at a job, not so much George, why is anyone paying support?

    Shelly left before Trayvon, does that matter?

    As to your last sentence, we'll never know. (none / 0) (#5)
    by oculus on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 02:30:52 AM EST
    Some of the issues (none / 0) (#8)
    by Yman on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 07:50:59 AM EST
    Life insurance - A life insurance policy is often requested in a complaint to satisfy any on-going financial obligations (i.e. child support, spousal maintenance/alimony, etc.) or joint debts that haven't been paid off at the time of the divorce, in case the obligor (GZ) were to die before they were satisfied.

    Defense fund - no idea.

    Future awards - Depends on FL law.  Proceeds from pending/anticipated lawsuits may be considered contingent, marital assets if the cause of action arose during the marriage, as in GZ's case.  Some awards/settlements are allocated and specify what the damages are for - (pain and suffering, emotional distress, lost wages, loss of consortium, etc) and others are unallocated, general damages.  Awards for lost income or past earning capacity are usually considered a marital asset subject to division.  Awards for future losses, pain and suffering, etc. are usually non-marital and belong to the awardee.

    Spousal support/alimony - It sounds like SZ may not have a complete financial picture, including what (if any) offers GZ has for employment, book/movie deals etc.  If there's any question on this issue, it will usually be requested in the complaint or answer/counter, simply because it can be more difficult or impossible to request it later.  For this reason, her lawyer's going to include it in the complaint.

    Shelly left before Trayvon - No idea where you're going with this.  It might be somewhat relevant if it related to a date of separation or as to counterclaim of abandonment, but she only "left" temporarily - so, IMO, no - it's not relevant at all.


    Re "Shelly left before Trayvon" (none / 0) (#14)
    by scribe on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 11:01:40 AM EST
    That would be an argument George could make in the divorce, i.e., that all that happened to him in re Trayvon and the financial pluses and minuses flowing from that and the trial happened after the mariage was irretrievably broken and therefore Shelly can neither benefit from nor be burdened by whatever financial pluses and minuses accrued after she left.

    I dunno whether that line of argument has any merit in Florida law but it's nonetheless something to argue over, even if it's only to wear down the other side in negotiating.

    Also, I understand from press reports that Shelly pleaded guilty to misdemeanor perjury the other day.  This is something which would be used to attack her credibility in the divorce proceeding and any other litigation she engages in for the rest of her life.


    And George was what? (5.00 / 1) (#16)
    by jondee on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 11:46:53 AM EST
    just a passive, not-participating witness to that act of perjury?

    She was charged, he wasn't (none / 0) (#19)
    by scribe on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 01:15:02 PM EST
    and it was her set of lips moving, not his.

    Actually (none / 0) (#27)
    by Mikado Cat on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 04:27:33 PM EST
    Yes, remember Judge Lester's comment, you can't sit like a potted plant and say nothing. Isn't it as much O'Mara's mistake as anyone's?

    Beyond that, I haven't looked into the opinion here but in many places the charge of perjury seemed very weak, the actual statements not meeting the standards of the Florida law which is something like knowingly making a false "factual" statement, Shelly said she wasn't sure of an exact amount, but EVERYBODY in the room was aware that some amount was there, it was growing, and that it was for defense, not a family bank account.

    Long winded, but seems to me it was Shelly's "choice" to make the plea deal to move on with her life "now" rather than fight it in court.


    Actually, not only (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by bmaz on Sat Sep 07, 2013 at 01:01:05 AM EST
    Not only could Zimmerman sit there like a potted plant, he had a constitutionally protected right to do so. That is called the 5th amendment.

    As to your thoughts - No No None and No (none / 0) (#15)
    by CoralGables on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 11:05:17 AM EST
    You could TRY to argue anything (none / 0) (#23)
    by Yman on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 02:46:23 PM EST
    I dunno whether that line of argument has any merit in Florida law but it's nonetheless something to argue over, even if it's only to wear down the other side in negotiating.

    I don't know of any state that ceases accrual of marital debts/assets when the marriage is "irretrievably broken" - it's almost always date of filing or date of legal separation.  If this argument has no merit in Florida law (as I expect), it won't work to "wear down" anyone - merely annoy and/or look desperate.  If GZ is successful in his suit, I'd expect that the vast majority of any settlement/verdict would be non-marital due to the nature of defamation damages - with perhaps a small portion for lost wages over the past year being designated a marital asset.  The bigger issue IMO are the debts.

    Also, I understand from press reports that Shelly pleaded guilty to misdemeanor perjury the other day.  This is something which would be used to attack her credibility in the divorce proceeding and any other litigation she engages in for the rest of her life.

    The odds are very high it will never come to this, but if it does get to trial, it's probably not a tactic he should try.


    Hard to believe (none / 0) (#28)
    by Mikado Cat on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 04:36:51 PM EST
    but some divorces are totally amicable, with neither party wishing any ill will to the other, and agreeing to and making reasonable demands.

    It struck me as odd that Shelly would claim George could get life insurance easily at reasonable rates, and I wondered if the defense fund/defense debts would be marital assets or not.

    Separately I think Shelly is very naive if she thinks divorcing George will allow her to live her life normally or that she will be safe. Perhaps markedly less, but even if 90% of the nuts stop hating, that leaves 10% still dangerous.

    Amicable divorces are not uncommon (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by SuzieTampa on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 06:52:39 PM EST
    Mikado: My husband and I divorced in FL. It was easy to get the forms at the courthouse and we divided our property. (We didn't have kids.) We worked in the same newsroom, and we drove to the courthouse together. It was very quick. The judge asked if there were any issues outstanding, and I said I thought my ex had the lids to the Tupperware. The judge noted it for the court, and that was it. Then he and I went out to lunch.

    For the people who want the Zimmerman story to go away: Stop clicking on stories.


    Maybe she will be safer. (none / 0) (#30)
    by Char Char Binks on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 06:37:26 PM EST
    I'd rather worry about 10% than 90%, and simply divorcing and changing her name would deflect most of the hatred George's way, which is where most of it is going anyway.  George should also change his name.  Of course it will be reported in all the news media (unless there is a reliable way to keep that secret) so he should try something extremely common like John Jacob Smith or Juan Anonimo Garcia.  And he really should move far away from Seminole County.  It's a wonder he's still there (and alive!).

    Just out of curiosity, (3.50 / 2) (#34)
    by MO Blue on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 08:32:45 PM EST
    how many attempts on George's life have been made since his acquittal?

    So far, (none / 0) (#36)
    by Char Char Binks on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 10:40:45 PM EST
    after nearly two months, none, so I guess that means there never will be.

    Unless (none / 0) (#37)
    by Mikado Cat on Fri Sep 06, 2013 at 11:10:06 PM EST
    it was successful the media might not cover it. Its a big world, and the set of crazies that might take any real action isn't likely all that large, plus we really have no idea how much "exposure" Zimmerman has right now. I can't imagine he has been in any public location without being recognized and reported.

    What place these days doesn't have a security camera and know that they could sell any image of Zimmerman they catch?

    If you are suggesting the threats aren't real, I think you are very very wrong.


    The media covered him (4.25 / 4) (#38)
    by MO Blue on Sat Sep 07, 2013 at 12:21:40 AM EST
    getting stopped for speeding, they covered him when he went shopping for new guns. Impossible to believe that they wouldn't cover someone attempting to kill him.

    Your statements are rather contradictory though. One minute the media wouldn't report attempts on his life and the next his image would be captured on security cameras everywhere he went and people would be eager to sell his image to the media.  

    People make a lot of threats that they take no action on. So far, no one has taken any action against Zimmerman. No reports of armed individuals following his vehicle or stalking him through the neighborhood, breaking into his house or making any attempt on his life. Guess time will tell just how serious the threats actually are.


    "John Donnelly, a family friend" (none / 0) (#40)
    by Anne on Sat Sep 07, 2013 at 09:16:36 AM EST
    Do the Zimmermans have any friends who don't talk to the media?

    Seems like it (none / 0) (#43)
    by Mikado Cat on Sat Sep 07, 2013 at 07:00:19 PM EST
    Most have stayed out of the "sights" of the media.

    off topic comments deleted (none / 0) (#55)
    by Jeralyn on Mon Sep 09, 2013 at 01:24:59 PM EST