Why George Zimmerman is still in media spotlight
George Zimmerman was found 'not guilty' in July of murdering of Trayvon Martin. But George Zimmerman continues to find himself in run-ins with the police and the media. Why?
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O'Mara said Zimmerman needs to be a lot more "circumspect" about what he does, since every action is "hyper-focused on and scrutinized."Skip to next paragraph
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"I understand they're not private individuals anymore — never by their own doing," said O'Mara, who continues to handle Zimmerman's defamation lawsuit against NBC but does not intend to represent him if any charges result from this investigation. "Now, with everything that has happened in the past year and a half, it would be very nice if we could let them separate and divorce as they need to in two separate paths because they've decided they can't live together."
Zimmerman may be his own worst enemy. Defense attorney Barry Scheck notes that trouble often simply begets more trouble.
"The pressure from the situation often adds an additional distortion to their behavior," said Scheck, a co-director of the Innocence Project, and part of the "dream team" that helped win Simpson's acquittal on charges of killing his ex-wife and a friend. "So it's a very difficult situation, and I think the people that have been most successful with it are the ones that have a clear sense of what they're about and just stick to it."
McClennan insists that no reputation — not even Zimmerman's — is "irreparably beyond repair."
"In crisis management ... once you resolve the fundamental issues, you go into purgatory for a while, where you start building it again and you start making the positives," he said. "But any one misstep can bring it right back to the beginning again, and you've got to start building all over again."
Purgatory, at least in Catholic theology, suggests a temporary expiation on the way to a state of grace. Dr. Patrick Williams, a clinical psychologist and founder of the Institute for Life Coach Training, isn't so sure Zimmerman is heading in that direction.
Watching Zimmerman leading up to the trial, Williams said he saw "somebody who thought he did the community a favor, you know. Like he was some hero."
Williams said Zimmerman could certainly use some guidance, but the doctor doesn't see him "as a coachable person" as long as he keeps repeating the same old patterns.
"You know, the biggest predictor of your future is your past," he said. "If he doesn't get charged on this case, there'll be something else. I think people kind of create their reality. And I'm not sure he's learned to make good choices."
Martin's parents have declined to weigh in on Zimmerman's continuing legal troubles and what it all means. But their attorney, Benjamin Crump, noted that they "have always leaned on their faith through this whole ordeal.
"And they've always said that the killer of their unarmed child would have to answer to a higher authority."
Breed reported from Raleigh, N.C. Follow him on Twitter at https://twitter.com/AllenGBreed.
Follow Kyle Hightower on Twitter: http://twitter.com/khightower.
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