Attorney Mark O'Mara says that a pending Florida Bar ethics inquiry related to how he handled the George Zimmerman case is one he initiated more than a year ago when trying to figure out how to manage Zimmerman's legal defense fund and a social media campaign.
"I am certain that the matter will be closed shortly, and that the conclusion will suggest that we handled these new and novel approaches in an appropriate and ethical way," O'Mara wrote in a blog post.
The bar confirmed Monday that O'Mara was the subject of an ethics complaint but provided no details, including who filed it and what allegations it included.
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Orlando, FL, USA
O'Mara would not comment Monday, but Tuesday afternoon he posted a long explanation on his website, omaralawblog.com.
Shortly after taking on Zimmerman as a client, O'Mara wrote, he sought the Bar's advice about how to handle a legal defense fund and a social media campaign. The Bar staff opened a case and asked a series of questions about how O'Mara intended to manage both, the blog post says.
"We responded promptly and to The Florida Bar's satisfaction, and the entire matter was deferred until after the trial. Although no further action has been taken since the verdict, the file has remained open," O'Mara wrote.
"Not only have I done nothing wrong … I think we also set the standard for how these matters should be handled in future high-profile cases that warrant such measures," he wrote.
Zimmerman is the former Neighborhood Watch volunteer acquitted in July of second-degree murder for shooting Trayvon Martin, an unarmed black 17-year-old in Sanford.
His legal defense fund raised more than $400,000, much of it after direct appeals from O'Mara, admitting that it was nearly depleted and in need of more money.
O'Mara used a webpage dedicated solely to the case to communicate with the media and public about case developments. He also used Twitter and, for a time, Facebook.
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