WUOMFM

Domestic abuse survivor fights to keep ex-husband behind bars

Oct 20, 2017

Update October 20, 9:30 a.m.:

Nicole Beverly took the stand yesterday to testify against her ex-husband, and saw the man who has threatened her life and the lives of their sons for the first time since he was sent to prison for stalking her in 2012.

After her testimony, Ann Arbor District Judge Karen Quinlan Valvo ruled that there is sufficient evidence for Kevin Beverly to stand trial against the new charges brought forward by Attorney General Bill Schuette. Those charges include witness intimidation and extortion.

The decision means Kevin Beverly will not be released from prison any time soon. He is scheduled to appear in Washtenaw County Circuit Court on November 28, in addition to upcoming hearings in Jackson and Wayne counties.

Update July 18, 12:30 p.m.:

Today, Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette announced that his office has filed multiple felony charges against Kevin Beverly, currently an inmate at Newberry Correctional Facility, for allegedly threatening to kill his former wife. If convicted of the alleged crimes, Beverly could spend the rest of his life in prison.

More from Schuette's office here.

No word yet on what this means for Beverly's scheduled Aug. 24 release date. Michigan Radio is following this story and will have more later.

Original post June 27, 6:30 p.m.:

Nicole Beverly was abused for years by her ex-husband Kevin Beverly.

He's now serving time for an aggravated stalking conviction. But he is scheduled to be released from the Newberry Correctional Facility Aug. 24.

Since her ex-husband went to prison, Nicole has heard that he is threatening to kill her and their two teenage sons. And he's allegedly tried to hire other inmates to kill her.

Back then, I didn't know the red flags to look for in dating in terms of someone with abusive personality. So the things that I thought were showing that he cared about me were more signs of jealousy and control.

With Kevin Beverly's parole date fast approaching, Nicole believes she must act quickly to save herself and her family.

Nicole Beverly joined Stateside today.

When Nicole and Kevin met while attending Eastern Michigan University, everything seemed normal. Nicole described Kevin as "charming" and "funny." But there were warning signs that she didn't notice until it was too late.

"Back then, I didn't know the red flags to look for in dating in terms of someone with abusive personality," Beverly said. "So the things that I thought were showing that he cared about me were more signs of jealousy and control."

If you or someone you know is suffering abuse, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at its toll-free, 24-hour hotline: 800-799-7233.

Kevin didn't like her friends, and often got angry when she would spend time with them. He would also contact her all the time, but the behavior was sporadic and she wasn't concerned. 

They were married and had two sons. But as time went on, the emotional abuse grew. And then physical abuse started to creep into the marriage. The threats and abuse grew more and more severe, until one day she attempted to leave--and Kevin snapped.

"As I was trying to flee from the garage, he grabbed me by my hair and pulled me back into the garage," Nicole said. "I did yell for help several times, but ... he's 6-foot-4, at that point in time, he was probably about 360 pounds. He dragged me into the house and ordered our boys to go upstairs and he proceeded to punch me, kick me, he jumped with his full weight on my ribs.

He dragged me into our living room ... and made me sit at the table and he went into his office, which was one room over, and got his gun. And he told me that if anyone had heard me yelling for help and had called the police, that he was going to shoot the officers that answered the door and then kill me.

"He dragged me into our living room, kitchen area, which was open, and made me sit at the table and he went into his office, which was one room over, and got his gun. And he told me that if anyone had heard me yelling for help and had called the police, that he was going to shoot the officers that answered the door and then kill me. And then he proceeded to hold a gun to my head for ... I couldn't even tell you how long, because I just remember him telling me everything that was wrong with me and all the reasons he should kill me while he had held it to my head."

Running was not an option for Nicole.

Kevin took her keys and her phone. With Nicole bruised from the beating, he called her out of work.

According to Nicole, it would be four months before she built up the courage to tell anyone about the abuse. She told her mom and contacted a safe house.

Her mom had no idea what was happening. 

"I think she recognized that he was emotionally abusive, but I think the physical abuse was a surprise to her and everyone that we knew. Because on the surface, we had a beautiful home, we had nice cars, we had beautiful children," Nicole said. "On the surface, everything looked wonderful. So people were shocked when they found out what was really happening."
 

I think [my mother] recognized that [my ex-husband] was emotionally abusive, but I think the physical abuse was a surprise to her and everyone that we knew. Because on the surface, we had a beautiful home, we had nice cars, we had beautiful children ... everything looked wonderful, so people were shocked when they found out what was really happening.

After getting a personal protection order approved, Nicole left town for a few weeks. When she returned, Kevin attempted to enter her home, threw a cigarette in her face, and continued to make graphic threats to her. Nicole presented the text message and a voice recording of the threats to his probation officer. After an attempt to arrest him failed, a manhunt was ordered and Kevin  was later found and arrested in Dearborn. 

During his time in prison, Nicole learned of multiple reports of inmates coming forward to say that Kevin was attempting to hire them to murder her and her children. Other inmates came forward to report similar threats.

But despite all that, Kevin is still scheduled to be paroled Aug. 24, 2017. 

Listen to the full interview above to hear about Nicole's effort to keep her ex-husband in prison; and why she has decided that re-locating and changing her identity is the best option for her family.

A GoFundMe campaign has been launched to assist  Nicole Beverly her with her upcoming relocation. More information about the campaign can be found here.

(Subscribe to the Stateside podcast on iTunesGoogle Play, or with this RSS link)