By using this site, you agree to the Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.
Close X

What's at stake in Zimmermans' divorce

NEED TO KNOW
  • Money, life insurance and the family dogs are up for grabs in Zimmermans' divorce
  • Zimmerman's estranged wife filed for divorce last week, and she has some specific demands
  • Frank Taaffe, Zimmerman's friend, tells HLN: Wife 'not entitled' to defense fund $$$
What's at stake in Zimmermans' divorce

56 witnesses: Zimmerman trial by the numbers

56 witnesses: Zimmerman trial by the numbers

Gallery: Top 10 moments in the Zimmerman trial

Gallery: Top 10 moments in the Zimmerman trial

George Zimmerman trial: 84 evidence photos

George Zimmerman trial: 84 evidence photos

Hundreds of thousands of dollars, life insurance and the family dogs might be at stake in the divorce of George and Shellie Zimmerman.

"The marriage between the parties is irretrievably broken," reads Zimmerman's estranged wife's divorce petition filed last week.

The former neighborhood watch volunteer was acquitted on July 13 after standing trial in the shooting death of unarmed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin. Shellie Zimmerman attended almost every day of the trial.

Read more: Police: Zimmerman in 'domestic altercation' with estranged wife

"I stood by my husband through everything," she told ABC News, "and I kind of feel like he left me with a bunch of pieces of broken glass that I'm supposed to now assemble and make a life."

Shellie Zimmerman's divorce petition lays out some very specific demands. She wants an "equitable distribution" of all the assets the couple acquired during the marriage, which could include a slice of the money Zimmerman's defense team raised through online donations. She wants Zimmerman to pay for temporary and permanent life insurance, and she also wants custody of the family's two dogs: A rottweiler named Oso and a mutt named Leroy.

Before the trial began in June, Shawn Vincent, the communications director for the O'Mara law group, the firm that represented Zimmerman, told HLN his client raised $536,000 in total through Internet donations. However, since the trial began in June, the law firm has not released any updated figures for how much Zimmerman has raised during or after the trial.

Shellie Zimmerman's attorney, Kelly Sims, wrote in the divorce petition that Zimmerman controls the account containing his online donations through a CPA, and it is unknown how much is currently in the account.

Read more: Zimmerman pulled over again

The divorce petition also claims that Shellie Zimmerman has already received $4,300 from the defense fund to help cover her living expenses since the couple separated on August 13.

HLN reached out to both Shellie and George Zimmerman's attorneys for comment on this article, but did not hear back immediately.

Frank Taaffe, Zimmerman's friend who helped raise money for him online, says Shellie Zimmerman shouldn't ask for that money.

"My friends who have donated say she is not entitled to any of that," Taaffe told HLN. "Nobody sent money in for her."

Shellie Zimmerman is also requesting an equitable distribution of any money the former neighborhood watch volunteer wins in a defamation lawsuit he filed against NBC for editing his call to police from the night of the shooting. George Zimmerman's attorneys said NBC made it appear that their client made a racist comment. Taaffe said Shellie Zimmerman should get some of that money.

"I think it's appropriate, because as she was Mrs. George Zimmerman she also had to feel the pain of that, and I believe she is entitled to that," said Taaffe.

However, Taaffe said Shellie is going too far asking for custody of Zimmerman's dog, Oso.

"That's his dog. That's his rottweiler. Now that's pretty vindictive. You want to take the guy's dog? That's man's best friend," Taaffe said. "Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned."

Join the conversation...

HLNtv.com welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.
What do you think of Rachel Jeantel's testimony?
Zimmerman Trial | See all 430 items What do you think of Rachel Jeantel's testimony?

Advertisement