BLOOMINGTON, Ill. — The jury has reached a verdict in the Kirk Zimmerman murder trial.
Zimmerman was found not guilty on Monday afternoon for the murder of his ex-wife Pam on Nov. 3, 2014. Her body was found with multiple gunshot wounds at her office on Bloomington’s east side.
Prosecutors claimed Zimmerman committed the murder out of greed and hate, stating the clear motive for him killing her stemmed from a delinquent child support payment amount of $3,900. The defense rebuked the claims made by the prosecution said there is no way he would kill his former wife and the mother of his children over an amount as small as $3,900 because he had a well paying state farm job, no credit card debt and had savings totaling more than $30,000.
Prosecutors discussed details about what happened the morning after the murder, specifically around the time when Pam was found. The defense team repeatedly said it believed the Bloomington Police Department did not do all it could to weed out other possible suspects in the case against Zimmerman.
In a statement released to the media following the verdict, Zimmerman said the media’s portrayal of him made the jurors believe he was guilty prior to the trial.
“Jurors were asked to convict despite a lack of real physical evidence; despite problematic evidence collection techniques; despite flawed analyses of my finances (laughably so) and telematics (the device manufacturer stated what the expert claimed to do was impossible); and despite multiple attempts by investigators to sway the jury with evidence recreation videos,” he said.
Zimmerman continued to say that as the trial went on, jurors saw flaws in the state’s case against him.
“As the trial revealed, I was treated as the only real suspect from the start, at the virtual exclusion of others in Pam’s life,” Zimmerman continued. “This community deserves, and should demand, more from its public servants.”
Detectives also tested a bullet shell casing retrieved from the scene to see if Zimmerman’s fingerprints were on it, and they were not. The day after the murder, Zimmerman’s car was seized and tested for gun shot residue. There was only gunshot residue on the gear shift in the middle console, but nowhere else.
“Many prospective jurors expressed their opinion I was guilty, before the trial started, based upon what they had read in The Pantagraph,” Zimmerman said in the statement. He also added, “This community also can expect more from its local newspaper. […] Those who relied solely on The Pantagraph’s coverage of this case must have been shocked by what was revealed during the trial.”
The trial officially kicked off April 8 and closing arguements were made Friday. The trial lasted 18 days, with three days of deliberation.
Follow along with Munashe Kwangwari’s live updates: