crimesider

Adam Pollock Update: Witness in Zimmerman trial threatened to cut off woman's fingers, toes, arrest report alleges

Adam Pollock in a March 11, 2013 booking photo.
Seminole County Sheriff's Office

Updated 10:20 a.m. EST July 26, 2013

(CBS) SANFORD, Fla. - A gym owner who testified in George Zimmerman's murder trial grabbed a knife and threatened to cut off a woman's fingers and toes during a March incident which led to his arrest, according to allegations detailed in an arrest report obtained by CBS News' Crimesider.

PICTURES: George Zimmerman on trial in death of Fla. teen

PICTURES: George Zimmerman crime scene photos

Adam Pollock, the 43-year-old owner of Kokopellis Gym in Longwood, Fla. where Zimmerman once trained, was arrested March 11 and charged with misdemeanor battery, his lawyer, Paul Ghezzi, told Crimesider earlier this month.

Although police initially arrested him on charges of felony battery by strangulation, false imprisonment and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, Ghezzi said those charges were never officially filed.

Ghezzi said that Tina Mangiardi, the woman who pressed charges against his client, has "no credibility whatsoever," and said Pollock is innocent.

Mangiardi pleaded guilty in March after being accused of taking more than $2 million from investors as part of a Ponzi scheme. Pollack was one of her investors.

According to the arrest report, Mangiardi told police that when she visited Pollock at his gym on March 11, he strangled her, pushed her against a wall, slapped her and demanded money from her.

Mangiardi told police Pollock then put on a pair of black gloves, picked up a knife and told her that he was going to take her fingers and toes as collateral. When Pollock turned his back, Mangiardi claims she was able to flee the gym and notify police.

When authorities later questioned Pollock about the incident, he initially claimed he hadn't seen Mangiardi in months, the arrest report says. However, when police told Pollock they had obtained surveillance footage of him following her out of the gym that day, he admitted they had an encounter.

The arrest report also says that after repeated denials, Pollock admitted he may have slapped Mangiardi and might have twisted her arm and put his hand on her neck in self-defense. He also allegedly told police he may have picked up a knife to move it while he was talking to her.

According to the report, police arrested Pollock based on marks found on Mangiardi's arm, the accusations she made and Pollock's admissions.

"Adam was misquoted by police," Ghezzi said in a July 26 e-mail to Crimesider. "All of Mr. Pollock's actions were in self-defense. Ms. Mangiardi's accusations are completely fabricated just like the stories she told numerous victims in central Florida to steal millions of dollars."

Pollock was booked at the Seminole County Jail and remained in custody for four days until March 15 when he was released on a $2,750 bond.

On July 8, Pollock testified in Zimmerman's murder trial that the former neighborhood watch volunteer was an unaccomplished fighter and was "physically soft" when he began training at Pollock's gym.

After being asked to explain to jurors the mixed-martial arts fighting method called "ground and pound," Pollock straddled defense attorney Mark O'Mara on the courtroom floor to demonstrate the move. Defense attorneys claimed Trayvon Martin used a similar maneuver to attack Zimmerman.

Zimmerman was acquitted July 13 of second-degree murder and a lesser charge of manslaughter in the death of the 17-year-old Martin.

Ghezzi believes his client will also be exonerated.

"My client is completely innocent," he told Crimesider last month.

Jury selection in the case against Pollock is scheduled to begin on July 29.

Complete coverage of the George Zimmerman-Trayvon Martin case on Crimesider

  • Stephanie Slifer

Comments

Follow Us