George Zimmerman Sued By His Security Firm Over Unpaid $27,000 Bill

Now we know why George Zimmerman started selling his autograph last month. Turns out, back when he was preparing to leave jail on bond over the summer, he and his lawyers had hired a detective agency run by a former SWAT team member to concoct an elaborate disappearing act: Zimmerman would be rushed out of jail in body armor, hidden in a resort, and guarded round the clock by a half dozen body guards.

Problem is, Zimmerman had already blown through most of the thousands sent in by supports to pay his credit cards and phone bills. Now that security company is suing Zimmerman over more than $27,000 he never ponied up.

See also:
-- George Zimmerman Is Now Selling Autographs To Fund His Defense In Trayvon Martin Case
--Trayvon Martin Case: Did George Zimmerman Whisper a Racial Slur During 911 Call?
-- Trayvon Martin Judge Tossed Off Case for "Disparaging" George Zimmerman

The Orlando-based firm, called Associated Investigative Services, Inc., filed suit in Orange County demanding the back pay for protecting Zimmerman for less than a month and for concocting the escape route.

Zimmerman's attorney, Mark O'Mara, calls the fees "exorbitant" and denies ever signing a contract with the firm. Indeed, records show they charged Zimmerman an eye-opening $3,100 a day for 21 days of protection, the Orlando Sentinel reports.

Those fees included military sounding measures including countering "aerial" and "negative counter surveillance," but O'Mara says the Zimmerman now has security that costs just $700 a week.

Either way, there's no denying that the would-be neighborhood watchman, who shot and killed unarmed Miami teen Trayvon Martin back in February, is facing some financial trouble.

Last month, he started selling autographs off his personal website after admitting that his defense fund, which had swelled to $140,000 after pleas from conservative talk radio hosts, was down to just $15,000.

Zimmerman, who's free on $1 million bond at the moment, is hiding out somewhere in Seminole County with his wife awaiting trial on murder charges.

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Tim Elfrink is a former investigative reporter and managing editor for Miami New Times. He has won the George Polk Award and was a finalist for the Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting.
Contact: Tim Elfrink