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by Lemonada Media
Believe Her

Chapter 4: Victim or Master Manipulator?

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Is Nikki a victim or is she a master manipulator who planned and plotted Chris’ murder? This question was at the heart of Nikki’s trial. There, the defense team put forth a cache of evidence of abuse. But the prosecution suggested that Nikki wanted attention, tried to destroy her credibility and asked: if the abuse was so bad, why didn’t Nikki leave? Justine unpacks the trial, and what the verdict says about how our criminal legal system views self-defense laws when it comes to people in abusive relationships. Resources: If you or someone you know is experiencing domestic abuse, use a safe computer and contact the National Domestic Violence Hotline at www.thehotline.org or call 1-800-799-7233. You can also search for a local domestic violence shelter at www.domesticshelters.org/. If you have experienced sexual assault and need support, visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network (RAINN) at www.rainn.org or call 1-800-656-HOPE. Have questions about consent? Take a look at this guide from RAINN at www.rainn.org/articles/what-is-consent. Learn more about criminalized survival in New York State at www.survivedandpunishedny.org/. Learn more about the Domestic Violence Survivors Justice Act at www.nysda.org/page/DVSJA. Read Justine’s May 2020 investigative piece on Nikki’s case at www.gen.medium.com/nikki-had-proof-shed-been-abused-but-was-it-enough-for-self-defense-bd9f196396eb. Follow the We Stand With Nikki campaign on Instagram at @westandwithnikki, on Twitter at @standwithnikki and on their webpage at www.westandwithnikki.com. Justine van der Leun is the host and lead reporter. This series is produced by Justine van der Leun and supervising producer Kristen Lepore. The associate producer is Giulia Hjort. The production assistant is Rory James Leech. Additional reporting by Kristen Lepore and Giulia Hjort. Mixing and sound design by Kegan Zema. Music by RRA aka Sara Abdelaal. Fact checking by Justin Kloczko. Additional audio engineering by Ivan Kuraev. Story editing by Jackie Danziger. Story consulting by Amy Metsch. The executive producers are Stephanie Wittels Wachs, Jessica Cordova Kramer, and Spiegel & Grau. Believe Her is created in partnership with Spiegel & Grau. Follow them on Twitter and Instagram at @spiegelandgrau. Follow Justine on Twitter at @justinevdl and on Instagram at @jvanderleun. Stay up to date with us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram at @LemonadaMedia. If you want to continue the conversation with other listeners, please join our Believe Her podcast community on Bookclubz at www.bit.ly/believeherbookclubz and our Facebook group at www.facebook.com/groups/believeher/. Interested in bonus content and behind the scenes material? Subscribe to Lemonada Premium right now in the Apple Podcasts app by clicking on our podcast logo and the "subscribe” button. Stay up-to-date on everything in the Lemonada world by becoming a superfan at https://joinsubtext.com/lemonadasuperfan. Click this link for a list of current sponsors and discount codes for this and all other Lemonada series: lemonadamedia.com/sponsors. To follow along with a transcript, go to www.lemonadamedia.com/show/believeher shortly after the air date. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

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by Lemonada Media