The case sparked a nationwide debate about race and self-defense. Zimmerman was accused of racially profiling Martin and said he shot the teen to protect himself.
O’Mara said the reason his office informed the bar initially was because there were no listed rules governing how an attorney should manage fundraising or social media websites they decided to create. The website was also used as a landing post to distribute information to various media outlets covering the case.
Zimmerman’s case was initially taken on by O’Mara pro bono, but he made the decision early on to begin soliciting funds on Zimmerman’s behalf from the public to assist in the defense. The site raised hundreds of thousands of dollars, but none of it went to pay Zimmerman’s attorneys.
O’Mara, who no longer represents Zimmerman in criminal matters, has since billed Zimmerman for $2.5 million for the hours he and co-counsel Don West spent on the case.