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Bonner v. State
Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals
740 So.2d 439 (1998)
Curtis Bonner routinely subjected his wife, Barbara Bonner (defendant), to mental and physical abuse. Curtis beat Barbara with his fists, pushed her into a wall, and once fired a gun in her direction. Barbara telephoned the police on numerous occasions when the physical violence escalated. Barbara also sought legal assistance to obtain a divorce but stopped the process whenever Curtis apologized for his behavior. One evening, after Curtis had been drinking alcohol, he began hitting Barbara. Barbara fought back, grabbed a knife, and stabbed Curtis, killing him. The State of Alabama (plaintiff) charged Barbara with manslaughter. At trial, Barbara sought to introduce expert testimony regarding battered woman’s syndrome. The trial court denied Bonner’s request, reasoning that expert testimony would confuse the jury. Bonner was convicted, and she appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (McMillan, J.)
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