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George Zimmerman released from Florida jail on $9,000 bond

Hours after he was granted bail in connection with domestic violence charges, George Zimmerman was released from a Florida jail Tuesday after posting a $9,000 bond, officials announced.

Zimmerman, 30, was freed from the John E. Polk Correctional Facility in  Seminole County, Fla., where he had been held since Monday, the sheriff’s office announced.

The bond was posted through a local company that supplies bail bonds, a jail officer who asked not to be identified told the Los Angeles Times by telephone. It was not known where Zimmerman was headed.

Earlier, Seminole County Judge Fred Schott set bail at $9,000, with several restrictions, including not being allowed to have any guns. The usual bail in this type of case is $4,500, but the judge set a higher amount because the girlfriend, Samantha Scheibe, indicated to authorities that Monday’s dispute was the second time she had been the victim of domestic violence by Zimmerman.

According to Assistant State Atty. Lymary Munoz,  the girlfriend said Zimmerman tried to strangle her about a week ago. The state had sought bail in the amount of $50,000, arguing that Scheibe said she feared for her safety because of the incidents. The case of choking was not reported to authorities at the time.

Wearing a gray jail jumper and with his hands cuffed in front of him, Zimmerman made his first appearance in the current case Tuesday. He was arrested Monday and held on the domestic violence-related allegations of aggravated assault, battery and criminal mischief for pointing a shotgun at Scheibe in her home, which he shared, in Apopka, Fla.

“I do find probable cause for all three allegations,”  Schott said.

Zimmerman is next scheduled to appear in court on Jan. 7, when he will be formally arraigned, said the judge, who added the case is being handled the same as any such case would be dealt with. Judge Schott said he decided on the higher bail based on the incidents of aggravated assault, which is a felony. Zimmerman also faces two misdemeanors, he said.

Zimmerman was acquitted of murder in July in connection with the shooting of Trayvon Martin, an unarmed black teenager, in 2012. A jury of six women accepted his argument that he had shot Martin in self-defense.

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