Trayvon Martin’s shooter had a domestic violence altercation in 2005

Miami HeraldMarch 21, 2012 

George Zimmerman, the Sanford man who shot and killed a Miami Gardens teen in a case that has sparked racial tension, was once part of a messy domestic violence case in Orlando.

In 2005, his ex-fiáncée, hair salon employee Veronica Zuazo, filed for a restraining order against Zimmerman — whom she called “Georgie.”

Zuazo claimed that she saw Zimmerman, her ex, driving near her home in August 2005. She called him and he said “he was just checking up” on her.

After they spoke for an hour at her home, Zuazo claimed she asked him to leave. He grew upset, snatching her cellphone away from her, pushing her, she said. A pushing match ensued and her dog jumped up and bit him on the cheek.

“I freaked out and told him to leave. I ran up the stairs and called 911 as he walked out,” she wrote in her petition for a restraining order.

Zimmerman, in a petition filed the next day, claimed she wanted him to spend the night and that she grew angry when he refused. “She accused me of going to another woman’s house or going to party,” Zimmerman wrote.

Zimmerman, then an All-State insurance salesman, claimed she slapped, clawed and tried to choke him.

In their petitions, both included other allegations of violence.

Zuazo claimed that three years earlier, Zimmerman had attacked her when they were driving to counseling. She claimed she popped her gum in his face, spurring him to call her names and smacking her mouth with his open hand.

In January 2002, she also claimed, Zimmerman got upset because she got home too late. They tussled. He threw her on the bed. She smacked him. Zimmerman left for the night.

For his part, Zimmerman claimed that in November 2002, she attacked him with a baseball bat after she discovered he went to a concert without her.

In the end, an Orange County circuit judge ordered them to stay away from each other for more than a year.

Zimmerman later became the neighborhood watch volunteer at his Retreat at Twin Lakes neighborhood in Sanford. He established a pattern of calling police when things were awry in his neighborhood, from barking pitbulls to potholes and suspicious people.

On Feb. 26, he called in the presence of a stranger. Minutes later, he shot the stranger — Miami Gardens teenager Trayvon Martin — and claimed self-defense. He has not been charged and the case is now the focus of a national campaign.

A rally is expected in both New York City and Miami Wednesday evening to demand criminal charges in the racially charged case.

Zimmerman, who is of Hispanic descent, is in hiding and could not be reached.

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