Shellie Zimmerman pleaded guilty to perjury Wednesday for lying about the couple’s finances during her husband’s bond hearing, then told ABC News Thursday she has to “think about” staying in her marriage with George Zimmerman.
George is the neighborhood watchman who was accused of shooting and killing 17-year-old Trayvon Martin during a scuffle in Zimmerman’s gated Florida neighborhood.
“The truth is I knew I was lying,” Shellie Zimmerman said in the ABC News interview.
HLN reports that Shellie apologized to Trayvon’s family in an interview that aired Thursday on ABC’s “Good Morning America.” She also hinted that her marriage is in jeopardy.
[Watch video (left) for ABC News interview with Shellie Zimmerman where she discusses life after the shooting and her marriage to George Zimmerman.]
On July 13, George Zimmerman was found not guilty of second-degree murder in the February 2012 shooting death of Trayvon. The 26-year-old nursing student has kept a relatively low profile since the ruling.
Prosecutors say Shellie Zimmerman told a Florida judge the couple was broke when they really had $135,000 from donations in the bank. As part of the plea deal she will spend a year on probation and serve no jail time. She will also perform 100 hours of community service and write a letter of apology to the judge who caught her in the lie.
“I can rationalize a lot of reasons for why I was misleading, but the truth is I knew I was lying,” Zimmerman said in the interview with ABC. “I wish a lot things were different. I can’t tell you how many times I have laid at night saying ‘God, I wish these circumstances had been different.’”
Zimmerman also expressed her feelings toward Martin’s family.
“If I could speak to them I would say that I’m deeply sorry for their loss… I can’t even begin to understand the grief that a parent experiences when they lose a child,” she said.
Trayvon was walking, unarmed, through the Zimmerman’s neighborhood Feb. 26, 2012. George Zimmerman saw him and called police saying Trayvon looked suspicious. The two got into an altercation and Zimmerman says he was forced to draw his gun and shoot Trayvon in self-defense.
The case generated an immense amount of public outrage across the country, pushing the Zimmermans into hiding before the trial. Shellie said they were in constant fear of their safety. “I think we have been pretty much like gypsies,” she said in Thursday’s interview. “We lived in a 20-foot trailer in the woods scared every night that someone was going to find us and we’d be out in the woods alone and that it would be horrific.”
She said during the ABC interview that she feared for her life immediately after her husband’s not guilty verdict was read in July.
“The deputies were so afraid of people shooting into the windows of the courthouse that they were pushing us up against the wall so that we couldn’t be seen by the people outside, and that was really scary because at that moment it became very real.
“It’s been real this whole time, but that was a distinct moment for me that I’ll never forget, being pushed against the walls and thinking at any second, my life could be over,” Shellie Zimmerman said.