In order to a avoid a felony conviction, George Zimmerman’s wife pleaded on Wednesday to a misdemeanor charge of perjury and was sentenced to serve one year of probation. Shellie Zimmerman was accused of lying during one of her husband's bond hearings last year when she supposedly told a judge that the couple had no money. At the time, the couple had received more than $130,000 in donations from Internet donors who wanted to help with George’s legal fees.
Prosecutors alleged that the two talked about the donations in code during phone calls while George was in jail after being charged with killing Trayvon Martin. The recordings have George on tape instructing Shellie to "pay off all the bills," including an American Express and Sam's Club card.
Shellie did not apologize in court but she did write an apology to Circuit Judge Kenneth Lester, the judge to whom she was accused of lying, CBS News reported.
"By lying under oath, I let my God down, I let your Honor and the court down, I let my family and my friends down, and most of all, I let myself down," she wrote. "In the future, no matter what the consequences, I will tell the truth because in the end all you have is your integrity." The letter was a requirement of her plea deal.
When asked why George was not present in court for his wife's plea hearing Wednesday, defense attorney Kelly Sims only responded, "That's an excellent question."
Shellie will be required to serve 100 hours of community service under the plea deal. She could have been looking at up to five years in prison.