Laws and courts

Invisible Intimate Partner Abuse and How to Manage Coercive Control in Court

By Dr. Karin Huffer – editor Wilene Gremain

Woman-in-depression-300x200In recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, here’s a composite story drawn from my cases:

I was a successful college educated thirty-something when I finally met my soul mate on a cruise ship to Alaska. Independent thinker, educated, ecology minded, career oriented, honest, he was almost the mirror image of myself as far as these qualities, two of a kind. We had it all. I was incredibly happy. Anything … we would do anything to show the love and respect we felt for each other. “Marry Me?” “You Bet!”

After almost one year of marriage and closing in on our first Christmas together, I was at full throttle to make the best ever Christmas for us. I remember. It was nothing … nothing … I couldn’t find my car keys as I was leaving the house. While plowing through my purse, I realized my wallet was almost empty. Robbed, that’s what I thought. I’d been robbed.

Help for Overcoming the Trauma of Facing the Abuser in Court

Woman in courtAfter suffering the trauma of domestic violence, many victims are terrified to face their abusers in court. The federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) can offer support, so in recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, Lovefraud Continuing Education presents the online course, “Surviving Court When You’re Traumatized” on Oct. 17 and 25, 2016.

Domestic violence victims often suffer from anxiety, depression and post-traumatic stress disorder, explains Dr. Karin Huffer, an adjunct professor at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice and author of the course. When victims must appear in court with the abuser for divorce, child custody or other legal matters, their symptoms may make it impossible for them to respond appropriately and participate fully.

“If the courts fail to supply an unbiased forum and equitable protection, the victim may end up with Legal Abuse Syndrome — an additional injury that is a form of post-traumatic stress disorder,” Dr. Huffer says.

What to do when your exploiter has cops for friends

by Lesson Learned

CopDuring your interaction with law enforcement it is normal to feel, anxious and somewhat intimidated. Even when you’re in the right, something about that badge, gun and the general demeanor of cops can make you feel stressed. What you should not feel is fear…at least from the officers. If you feel fear – if they are standing too close, or are intentionally appearing intimidating, ask them calmly if they would take a step back as you’re feeling a little overwhelmed. This is where a witness is crucial. If the officer will not step back you have a witness to attest to that and he knows it. Throughout this I will refer to law enforcement as ‘he’ for expedience and because during my ordeal I didn’t have any interactions with female officers. I am also referring to sociopaths and other opportunists as ‘he’ again for expediency and because that is my main experience.

Video: Aren’t there any laws against social predators?

Here’s the next installment of our “Letters to Lovefraud” video series.

A Lovefraud reader lost $38,000 to a con artist who has a history of scamming women. He employs the same deception and manipulation tactics time after time, cycling through a new woman every four months. 

If you’ve had a similar experience, I explain why the con artist may or may not be prosecuted, what you can possibly do, and what you should think about before making a move.

Interview: Lying to get someone in bed is sexual assault

Joyce Short

Joyce Short

Catch Joyce Short, author of Carnal Abuse by Deceit, and soon-to-be released, Don’t Swallow That Catfish Hook, discussing why “lying to get laid” is a crime on CBC radio Sunday, September 11, 2016 at 11 am EDT.

Jim Brown, an award winning producer and the highly acclaimed host of The 180 – Canada’s national radio show to spark conversation on hot topics – jumped right in on the important question …

“People often tell little white lies to impress a possible partner. At what point do those lies add up to fraud?“

Short stresses that this discussion applies to sexual assault by fraud victims, whether they live in Bombay, Boston or Bangkok. “All around the world, victims suffer the humiliation and defilement of romance scams,” she says. 

The broadcast airs at 11 am (EDT) on Sunday morning, 9/11. Listen, and add your voice to the comment dialogue that follows!

Posted in: Laws and courts

Florida judge is publicly shamed for berating a domestic violence victim

A Florida woman called the police in April 2015 — the father of her child choked her and threatened her with a knife.

The man was arrested and put on trial. Suffering from anxiety, the domestic violence victim failed to show up to testify. Florida Judge Jerri Collins berated the woman, charged her with contempt of court, and threw her in jail for three days — even though the victim pleaded that she had a 1-year-old child to care for.

On Wednesday, Judge Collins was publicly reprimanded — on live TV — for her “intolerable” behavior by the Florida Supreme Court.

This should happen more often.

Judge who berated and jailed a domestic abuse victim gets her day in court – and it’s not pretty, on DailyKos.com.

Posted in: Laws and courts

Ex NFL star Darren Sharper sentenced to 18 years for drugging and raping women

Darren Sharper in 2011

Darren Sharper in 2011

Darren Sharper played 14 years in the NFL, for the Green Bay Packers, Minnesota Vikings and New Orleans Saints. He was named All-Pro six times and played in two Super Bowls. He retired in 2011 and became an analyst with NFL Network. Then his life got weird.

Sharper, 41, pleaded guilty or no-contest to charges of drugging and raping nine women in Louisiana, Arizona, California and Nevada, although there may be as many as 16 victims.

He cut a plea deal to serve a total of 9 years for the crimes. But on August 18, 2016, U.S. District Judge Jane Triche Milazzo threw out the plea deal, and sentenced him to 18 years. “We can never ignore the damage you inflicted on those women and society at large,” she said.

UK man murders his partner after being released from prison for murdering another woman

Anthony Ayres was convicted of murder again.

Anthony Ayres was convicted of murder again.

Anthony Ayres was convicted to life in prison in 1994 for strangling his partner, Dawn Wisdom, to death. But in the U.K., “life in prison” doesn’t really mean being jailed for life, and Ayres was released in 2012.

He was just sentenced to another term of life in prison for murdering another girlfriend, Kelly Pearce, with a clawhammer, and stabbing her more than 40 times.

Plus, he’d been convicted of strangling two other women in 1988 and 1989. They survived.

But Ayres’ violence escalated, and now two women are dead.

Evil 5ft builder who was jailed for life for murdering his partner in 1994 and stabbed SECOND woman to death after he was freed from jail, on DailyMail.co.uk.

Stepfather arrested in death of 11-year-old girl

Celina Cass

Celina Cass

Celina Cass, of Stewartstown, New Hampshire, vanished on July 26, 2011. Her body was found in the Connecticut River six days later.

Her stepfather, Wendell Noyes, was long suspected in the crime. He was just arrested on Monday, June 20, 2016.

I have to wonder — what took so long?

Celina Cass: Arrest made in 2011 case of missing 11–year-old girl found murdered, on NBCNews.com.

Story suggested by a Lovefraud reader.


Woman records her own murder by abusive boyfriend

Wesley Webb, right, and two of her children. (GoFundMe)

Wesley Webb, right, and two of her children. (GoFundMe)

Wesley Webb, 40, and her boyfriend, Keith Smith, 43, were arguing in the home they shared in Schuylkill Township, Pennsylvania. Webb turned on her cell phone to record his verbal abuse. Also recorded was the gunshot when Smith allegedly murdered her with a 12-gauge shotgun.

Smith then turned the weapon on himself, but survived a gunshot blast to his face.

Webb’s three children were in the house and called 911.

Slain mother-of-three who recorded her own murder at the hands of her abusive boyfriend, on DailyMail.co.uk.



Posted in: Cases, Laws and courts