Lake Mary police Officer Zach Hudson, an agency spokesman, said Tuesday the video is "the last piece of the puzzle" investigators have been trying to piece together since Monday afternoon, when Shellie Zimmerman called police and said she feared her husband might shoot her or her family.
Either Zimmerman could face arrest, Hudson said. Each claims the other was the aggressor.
Shellie Zimmerman filmed the video during their argument, Hudson said, but police haven't seen it yet — because George Zimmerman, the Neighborhood Watch volunteer infamous for shooting 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Sanford, smashed the device to pieces.
"It's been pretty badly damaged," Hudson said
However, when the police spokesman was asked if he felt police have an "excellent" chance of extracting the video, he replied: "Yes sir, I do."
That video, he said, It would be a "key component" in his agency's charging decision, Hudson said.
Police on Tuesday released video of the incident, including a tense dashcam video in which George Zimmerman surrenders to authorities.
It shows George Zimmerman near his Honda Ridgeline in front of his Sprucewood Road home when officers pull up. They order him to put his hands up and walk slowly backward to them in the middle if the street.
He is ordered to his knees and handcuffed.
Police also released video from the house's surveillance cameras.
The home security video, which is grainy, appears to show George and Shellie Zimmerman arguing in the driveway. They gesture and point at each other, and another man briefly steps between them. George Zimmerman appears to break the iPad while holding it, then toss it aside.
Police responded to Sprucewood after Shellie Zimmerman called 911 just after 2 p.m. Monday and told a police dispatcher her estranged husband had his hand on his gun, was making threats and had punched her father.
"I'm really, really afraid," Shellie Zimmerman said. "I don't know what he's capable of. I'm really, really scared."
Police have since said they have no evidence a gun was involved. Shellie Zimmerman, her father and other people present didn't actually see one, Hudson said, and none was found on Zimmerman.
"As of right now, a gun is not a part of the equation," Hudson said.
Officers did not search George Zimmerman's vehicle, Hudson said, because they didn't feel they had probable cause to do so.
Police say they are still investigating to determine whether to charge either Zimmerman with a domestic violence-related crime. George Zimmerman told police that his wife hit him with the iPad, Hudson said.
It's also possible George Zimmerman would be charged with destruction of evidence for breaking the iPad, he said.
George Zimmerman did not appear to be home mid-day Tuesday, although news crews again lined his street, Sprucewood Road.
Hudson said police knew the whereabouts of both George and Shellie Zimmerman but did not disclose them.
He said he did not know if George Zimmerman spent the night in the house. The former Neighborhood Watch volunteer was there Monday evening and defense attorney Mark O'Mara said Zimmerman lives there but that Shellie had moved out recently.
She filed for divorce last week in Seminole County.
Police Chief Steve Bracknell said Monday that Shellie Zimmerman and her father, David Dean, had signed paperwork stating they didn't want to press charges.
But Hudson told reporters Tuesday it was up to police — not the Zimmermans — to determine whether domestic violence charges are warranted.
George Zimmerman was charged with second-degree murder in the Feb. 26, 2012, shooting of Trayvon. Zimmerman said he was attacked by the Miami Gardens teen and fired in self-defense.
Zimmerman was acquitted at trial in July. The verdict sparked widespread outrage and protests.