George Zimmerman wants a new judge to preside over his murder trial for shooting Trayvon Martin, arguing the current judge is biased against him.
Zimmerman's attorney, Mark O'Mara, filed a motion to disqualify Florida Circuit Court Judge Kenneth Lester, who revoked Zimmerman's initial bond and then set a new, substantially higher bond.
"Mr. Zimmerman has a reasonable fear that he cannot get a fair trial or a fair stand your ground hearing by this court," O'Mara wrote. "The court makes gratuitous, disparaging remarks about Mr. Zimmerman's character; advocates for Mr. Zimmerman to be prosecuted for additional crimes; offers a personal opinion about the evidence for said prosecution; and continues to hold over Mr. Zimmerman's head the threat of future contempt proceedings."
Lester's actions have led Zimmerman to believe that the judge is bias against him and that he will not receive a fair trial, O'Mara wrote.
Lester revoked Zimmerman's $150,000 bond last month after the state prosecutor accused Zimmerman and his wife of lying to the court about their financial assets during his initial bond hearing to obtain a lower bond.
A few weeks later during a second bond hearing, Lester set Zimmerman's bail at $1 million but wrote a strongly worded order in which he said Zimmerman lied and may have been preparing to flee the country once out on bail. He rejected the notion put forth by O'Mara, that Zimmerman lied about his finances because he didn't trust the system.
"The defendant tried to manipulate the system when he has been presented the opportunity to do so," Lester wrote in his ruling. "This increased bail is not a punishment. It is meant to allay this court's concern that the defendant intended to flee the jurisdiction and a lesser amount would not ensure his presence in court."
Zimmerman has since posted bail and is living at a safe house in Seminole County.
It's not the first time Zimmerman's lawyers have asked for a new judge. In April, Zimmerman's lawyers filed a motion asking Judge Jessica Recksiedler, who was initially assigned to the case, to remove herself because of an alleged conflict of interest.
Zimmerman's family had first approached Recksiedler's husband, attorney Mark NeJame, about representing Zimmerman. He declined and referred them to O'Mara.