News Ball demonstrates the importance of citizen journalism as an adjunct to the role of print and broadcast media in their uncovering of an apparent inappropriate and dishonest attempt to make George Zimmerman into a hero. I’ve been fact-checking the NewsBall claims, some of which appear legitimate, some not so much. Please also read the updates to this story for the most recent developments, which show the really important aspects lie in what the media has NOT covered.
It turns out that a Sanford based Sheriff’s Dept officer, who self-identifies as a friend and supporter of George Zimmerman, appears to have contacted Zimmerman using his cell phone to alert Zimmerman to the accident that occurred. Zimmerman did not apparently, as claimed, just ‘happen to be there’. It appears it was contrived, arranged, staged for him to come to the rescue where there were already plenty of people assisting. from News Ball:
Longtime supporter (& one source still being investigated by NB is claiming friend) of George Zimmerman, Officer Patrick Rehder’s cell phone records reveal a text or call to George Zimmerman right after the 5:47 PM crash was called in. This tipped Zimmerman off to the car crash accident & to get there to assist the family before Officer Rehder arrived. Zimmerman, still hiding out in the same neighborhood that he killed Trayvon Martin in, was less than a mile away to jump into action & be a hero with his passive aggressive approach KNOWING that his name on the police report would eventually be made public. We didn’t give Zimmerman enough credit – he had a larger role in orchestrating this than we thought was possible. The phone records, coupled with a source confirming to NB that George Zimmerman is in possession of a police scanner (like the wannabee cop he continues to be) so that he can listen in to accidents in the area “in need of a super hero.”
I’m not suggesting Zimmerman didn’t go to the accident and help, only that he did not just happen to be there and that he was not needed. His attorneys seem to be trying to deal with the hugely understandable skepticism about this incident — which it turns out might not be quite as coincidental as it was reported to be, given the 911 calls reporting plenty of help that was there.
Where we are now is that the family has canceled their press conference, but probably NOT for the reasons being given by Zimmerman’s attorneys.
Mark O’Mara told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer that multiple government agencies and witnesses have backed up the account in which Zimmerman, who was recently acquitted of charges in the death of teenager Trayvon Martin, assisted the family after their SUV flipped over on a Florida highway.
Another problem appears to be a lack of documentation of the accident, other than an accident report – no photos, no media coverage of the actual accident. Cars don’t disappear after a crash, they are either repaired or junked, but the insurance company will demand an inspection. It is not an unreasonable question, given the connection between the law enforcement officer from the Sanford office of the Seminole County Sheriff’s Office and Zimmerman for the media to demand a photo of the car post-crash and any photos of the crash site with the car.
I’m definitely not going as far as to suggest the accident was staged; that would be silly. But it sure appears someone tried to exploit this crash, and to stage the rescue, in a deliberate attempt to misrepresent George Zimmerman as something he is not, when there were already plenty of people helping at the crash site, as shown by the 911 calls. If Zimmerman, the Sanford PD, and Zimmerman’s attorneys are willing to misrepresent what happened, we can hardly find his court testimony credible and honest either. It wouldn’t be the first time he had lied in court, as we saw with his bail hearing when he contributed to the misrepresentation of how much money had been donated to his cause. And Zimmerman’s attorneys had asserted he had left Florida, yet we find him back at his old stomping grounds when it is convenient.
Besides, giving the appearance of being a hero can be profitable; one group just gave Zimmerman $12,000 for the purpose of rearming himself.