On the afternoon of March 15, David Evans posted a wistful love letter on Facebook to his wife of 30 years. Evans, the charismatic pastor of a Baptist church in a small Oklahoma city, recalled their brief courtship and his marriage proposal.
Three decades later, he wrote, he hoped he could treat her just as he did back then. Seven days later, Evans was shot to death while he lay in bed at home. Initially, his wife, Kristie Evans, 48, told authorities she awoke to the sound of a gunshot and found her husband bleeding. According to a probable-cause affidavit released days after the killing, she said she neither heard nor saw a suspect. The killing prompted sensational headlines, with localnational and international media largely portraying the crime as a love triangle that devolved into murder.
Coercive control includes a range of emotional, physical and other abusive behaviors like isolation, humiliation, financial control, sexual coercion and low-level violence, Stark said. But it was the answer for my son. Tara Portillo, the Pontotoc County prosecutor handling the case, declined to comment.
Kristie Evans pleaded not guilty to a charge of first-degree murder, and her lawyer, Joi Miskel, said they plan to present a self-defense case for battered women in court. Her next hearing is scheduled for July 8. Kristie Evans declined to discuss details of the March 22 killing, though she agreed to talk about her marriage. The couple met in high school in Roland, Oklahoma, a town of a few thousand near Arkansas. They started dating in Februarywere married four months later and eventually had three children — a girl and two boys.
When they were younger, the siblings said, he would make them stay up all night cleaning.
This became a reality that lasted throughout their marriage, Kristie Evans said. So was his control of money, she said. Long said she was also abused. Their grandfather, Ed Armer, said he and his wife briefly cared for the boys after they were removed from his daughter's house. Kristie Evans said her husband was physically abusive with her, too. According to Kristie Evans, that process began with her husband taking her to a clothing-optional park, then Craigslist Starkville sex sex clubs.
He eventually began posting vaguely worded advertisements soliciting sex on Craigslist, Kristie Evans said. In the weeks and months that followed their November exchange about a threesome, the messages Long provided show David Evans twice asking his wife to bring home a co-worker for sex — she declined — and to perform sex acts with other men. At one point, he demanded she provide him with a typed-up, printed statement detailing their sex life.
Experts say that partners routinely threatening suicide is itself a form of abuseone that can allow the abuser to manipulate a partner into submission.
In the messages, after David Evans made the threat, Kristie Evans quickly softened. That you provide. Not that i make happen or beg or force.
Domestic violence advocates and experts point out that victims routinely stay with their abusers for a host of reasons. For Kristie Evans, she said she stayed with her husband due to a complex mix of shame, concern and fear: shame over the secret life she said her husband had pushed her into, concern about what her departure would do to him and fear of who he might hurt after she left. Still, on Feb. It was only later that her mother told her the chilling reason why: As they talked, Kristie Evans said, her husband was sitting on a nearby bench.
Clutched in his hand — and aimed at his chin — was a.
A lawyer for the man, Kahlil Square, did not respond to a request for comment. Minutes after confessing to Long, Kristie Evans drove to the police station and surrendered, Long recalled. But she recalled that when she and her brothers were younger, they had always looked forward to turning Miskel, her lawyer, would only say she planned to pursue a self-defense claim.
Experts said this could be a challenge.
Cindene Pezzell, legal director of the National Clearinghouse for the Defense of Battered Women, said the allegation that Kristie Evans asked someone else to kill her husband could show evidence of premeditation — a possibility that could bar her defense team from mounting such a claim. Pezzell added, however, that enlisting a third party can also show that Evans was trying to protect herself.
Six years ago, advocates in the United Kingdom pushed authorities to make the abuse a crime. In Scotland, police officers are now trained to identify and investigate it, and officials, businesses and others have led campaigns to raise awareness about it.
The case of Sally Challen — who was sentenced to a life term in prison for bludgeoning her husband to death with a hammer in — also helped raise its profile, said Harriet Wistrich, director of the U. The killing and its aftermath were widely covered in the media, she said, and her sons publicly advocated for her release from prison. Her life term was reduced to time served. Coercive control has appeared in American court proceedings, too, Pezzell said. Recent legislation in California, for instance, allows evidence of the abuse to be presented in child custody disputes.
In Hawaii, it can now be included in petitions for protective orders. And a bill ed into law last week in Connecticut contains similar measures. But Stark described these changes as marginal. But she cautioned that it could also be treated as a new and untested area of social science, one that prosecutors could seek to exclude from court. For Armer, this has prompted uncomfortable conversations with relatives, a Sunday school teacher and officials at his church.
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