Yesterday while Bob and I were recording our weeklypodcasts, we talked in detail about the latest arrest of George Zimmerman. What was interesting about our conversation is that while describing the incident that led to Zimmerman being taken to jail, Bob mentioned that Zimmerman's girlfriend was pregnant. This is actually completely understandable because that narrative is still prominent in the media right now -- even though it's not true. Zimmerman's girlfriend, Samantha Scheibe, isn't pregnant and never was. The claim that she was came from Zimmerman himself, who told a 911 operator that that's what he and Scheibe were fighting over that brought police out. Scheibe says he held a gun to her head; he says he didn't and that she "went crazy." It wasn't until after Zimmerman had been arrested that Scheibe apparently told police that she wasn't pregnant. That clarification got buried in a lot of news reports, though.
So the question becomes: did Zimmerman really think Scheibe was pregnant, and if so why? If not, why did he claim she was?
I thought this was a weird discrepancy the first time I heard it. While I'm certainly not accusing Scheibe of lying about being pregnant and I still wholeheartedly believe that Zimmerman is a danger who should've been taken off the streets long ago -- he's not a time-bomb waiting to go off, he already went off -- it's exactly the kind of thing that can hamstring any prosecution of him. I don't think George Zimmerman is a criminal mastermind. Quite the contrary -- I think he's a dumb-shit hothead. I'm not sure I can imagine him having the forethought to concoct a detailed plan whereby he calls the police during the fight and tells them his girlfriend is pregnant when she isn't -- although anything's possible. On the other hand, if she really did lie to him about being pregnant then unless there's physical evidence of abuse on her body it means her entire story can be called into question. If it turns into nothing more than he-said-she-said, guess who gets the benefit of the doubt.
You can expect Zimmerman's defense to work from exactly this point and in fact a new narrative is already being leaked to the press that Zimmerman believes Samantha Scheibe lied to him about her pregnancy and then framed him when he threatened to walk out, knowing everyone would believe her. What's more, it turns out that Scheibe and her mother had been talking to the local news in Orlando for three weeks before Monday's incident, claiming that Zimmerman was unstable and potentially dangerous; they reportedly also sought interviews with national outlets, all of this rather than going to the police if Scheibe truly felt that she was threatened.
Make no mistake: George Zimmerman's lawyers are going to paint Samantha Scheibe as either a woman scorned or, worse, someone who all along had a plan to set Zimmerman up in the name of making herself some money. And again, if there's no conclusive physical evidence to prove Zimmerman did what she says he did -- if it's just her word against his and very little more -- I don't even need to tell you what will happen. Zimmerman will walk again. And he'll get his guns back. And he'll be a bigger cult hero to the right than ever before.