A New York woman who said she shot and killed her boyfriend after years of abuse was convicted of second-degree murder on Thursday after weeks of testimony in a Poughkeepsie court.
Poughkeepsie Journal reports that 30-year-old Nicole Addimando was found guilty of the 2017 shooting death of her boyfriend, gymnastics coach Christopher Grover. The incident occurred inside the couple’s apartment in Poughkeepsie, where they lived with their two young children.
Shortly after the shooting, Addimando ran outside and flagged down an officer, and explained she had an altercation with her boyfriend and needed assistance. When the officer arrived to the apartment, he found Grover in the living room, dead from an apparent shotgun wound to the head.
The shooting happened a day after a neighbor spotted bruises on Addimando’s face and called Child Protection Services (CPS), out of concern for her safety and the couple’s two children.
— Gymnastics Coaching (@GymCoaching) September 30, 2017
Addimando told police she killed Grover after the man tortured, sexually and physically abused her for years. Yet, prosecutors said the woman’s claim simply wasn’t true, while calling her a master manipulator who “rehearsed story of abuse and bizarre narration of events.”
While Addimando testified that Grover raped, choked, and beat her during their years together, prosecutors said Grover was asleep on the couch when the incident occurred.
“That wasn’t self-defense,” special prosecutor Chana Krauss said. “Chris Grover was sleeping on the couch. This was intentional murder.”
One of Addimando’s lawyers, John Ingrassia, argued that his client felt Grover was going to kill her, since CPS would soon learn his “dark secrets.” The attorney said Addimando put up with “evil, sadistic torture” with Grover, who once burned her on numerous parts of her body with a hot spoon.
“We marched witness after witness after witness after witness to attest to the abuse,” Ingrassia said. “[Gordon’s] world was about to collapse… (his) deep dark secret was about to be unveiled for the world to see.”
The prosecutor stressed that the Addimando had plenty of opportunity to come forward about the abuse instead of killing Grover. Yet, the defense said Addimando had battered woman syndrome, and it wasn’t that simple to escape.
Nicole Addimando was found guilty of second-degree murder by a jury on Friday in connection with the shooting death of Christopher Grover. https://t.co/Xg7PkL3Crv
— Poughkeepsie Journal (@PokJournal) April 12, 2019
Addimando said during her testimony while Grover appeared outwardly to be a caring husband, “he was different behind closed doors.”
The abuse allegations spanned back for years, including a 2015 incident in which someone uploaded images of Addimando to PornHub. Domestic violence advocates contacted Hyde Park detective Jason Ruscillo, Addimando, who testified that, at the time, Addimando was “closed off” and unwilling to sign a deposition against Grover.
The previous year, in September 2014, forensic nurse examiner Judy Lyons at Vassar Brothers Medical Center documented numerous signs of abuse on Addimando, including a bite mark on her shoulder and bruises on her face, neck, breasts, thighs, buttocks, genitals, and shoulder.
Grover’s supporters, including his cousin and former boss, Julia DeGregoria, described him as someone who didn’t seem capable of abuse.
“He was not a person that even liked confrontation, so I could never imagine him abusing anyone,” DeGregoria said, according to Poughkeepsie Journal. “We will only ever know one side. In this case, the victim no longer has a voice; He will never speak again.”
Addimado’s supporters were shocked at the verdict while Grover’s supporters were relieved.
“Justice served,” Grover’s mother, Gail Grover, said. “He was with us.”
Addimando returns to court on May 20 for sentencing. She’s facing a maximum sentence 25 years to life.
[Feature Photo: Nicole Addimando/Facebook;Police handout]