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Monday, April 23, 2012
George Zimmerman Released on $150,000 Bail, Fitted With Tracking Device

Trayvon Martin's Killer Freed From Jail While Awaiting Second-Degree Murder Trial

George Zimmerman Released on $150,000 Bail, Fitted With Tracking Device

George Zimmerman, the neighborhood watchman standing trial on a second-degree murder charge for the killing of Florida teenager Trayvon Martin, was released from jail late Sunday evening on $150,000 bail.

It is not known where Zimmerman will be heading, as his location is being kept secret and may be outside of Florida, Fox News reported. Zimmerman made no statements as he walked out of the John E. Polk Correctional Facility around midnight on Sunday, accompanied by another man, and got into a white BMW. According to the sheriff's office, he has been fitted with an electronic tracking device, which is a standard precaution in such cases.

It is believed that the neighborhood watch captain only had to put out 10 percent of the bail money to be released, although he took out a mortgage to pay for it. Zimmerman was granted a release partly because he had not committed a serious crime before the Trayvon Martin incident, and had turned himself in to authorities last week immediately after being charged.

The Martin-Zimmerman case has made national headlines ever since the neighborhood watch captain fatally shot 17-year-old Martin on Feb. 26 in Sanford, Fla., although it is still unclear who started the altercation. Zimmerman was not initially charged because of Florida's "Stand Your Ground" self-defense law, which allows for use of deadly force.

On Friday, Zimmerman appeared at his bond hearing in a suit bound in shackles, and for the first time addressed Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, the parents of the slain Florida teen.

"I'm sorry for the loss of your son," Zimmerman expressed at the hearing.

"I did not know how old he was. I thought he was a little bit younger than I am," the neighborhood watch captain explained to the prosecutor while on the stand. "I didn't know if he was armed or unarmed."

The other terms of Zimmerman's release on bail include that he have no contact with Martin's family, have no possession of firearms, abstain from alcohol and controlled substances, obey a curfew of 7 p.m., and alert the sheriff's office of his location every three days. He was also forced to surrender his passport.

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