Published December 28, 2012
George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watch volunteer facing second-degree murder charges for the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, is being sued by an Orlando private company claiming they are owed $27,000 for private security services.
The Miami Herald reports that Associated Investigative Services Inc. filed suit against Zimmerman and his attorney, Mark O'Mara, for failing to pay in full a $66,000 security bill for 21 days of protection —about $3,100 dollars a day— even though Zimmerman was still in Seminole County Jail during seven of those days.
The security team helped plan Zimmerman's exit of the Seminole County Jail, outfitting the defendant with concealed body armor while protecting him with an armed guard. He drove off in a rental vehicle that was checked for any secretly placed GPS tracking devices, the Herald said.
The team planned the "jail escort plan" that eventually had Zimmerman dressing in disguise and changing vehicles on his way to a safe house.
Zimmerman's lawyer, O'Mara, claimed last week he paid the company $40,000 and that the charges were exorbitant and that he never signed a contract, according to the Herald.
The attorney representing the security company, Stephen Milbrath, says Zimmerman and O'Mara are bound by an oral contract.
The Trayvon Martin shooting caused national outrage and raised racial tensions at rallies across the country who believed the shooting death of the teenager was unjustified. Zimmerman has said the shooting was in self-defense.
The suit says the private company put together a plan that included a seven-member team of bodyguards that would watch over Zimmerman, his wife, other family members, and even O'Mara himself.
It is unclear whether the plan was fully carried out, the newspaper noted.
Zimmerman is currently under private security protection provided by another company at the cost of $700 a week, O'Mara said.