On tonight’s new episode of CBS’s 48 Hours, investigators look into the story of boxer Christy Martin, who was nearly shot and then beaten by her husband, Jim Martin, according to the press release for the episode.
Correspondent David Begnaud interviews Christy Martin about her experience, diving into her tumultuous relationship with her now ex-husband.
“I keep thinking of the people who will watch this and say, ‘How does a woman who’s so powerful … how is she not able to stand up for herself at home,” he tells her, and Martin replies, saying that she knows people will question that. She explains that she did not have the same type of strength at home that she has in the boxing ring.
On November 23, 2010, according to a press release, Martin told her husband that she wanted a divorce. He exploded, beating and stabbing his wife before pulling a gun on her. When he shot, he missed her chest by inches. Christy Martin survived, and Jim Martin is now serving time in prison.
CBS News reported that when Christy Martin made it to the emergency room after flagging down a stranger in the street, she had been stabbed four times, she had a punctured lung, her left leg had been cut to the bone, and she had a bullet just three inches away from her heart. She was able to escape the nightmare by leaving the room when her husband went to take a shower.
Jim Martin Was Sentenced to 25 Years in Prison
The Orlando Sentinel reported on June 26, 2012 that Jim Martin was sentenced to 25 years in prison.
“Look at me, Jim,” Christy Martin said to him before the sentencing. “From the beginning, I financially supported you, your family and all of your significant others. How was I repaid for taking care of you all of those years?”
She said that he had blackmailed her and later left her “for dead on the bedroom floor,” according to the Orlando Sentinel article.
Jim Martin Was Charged With Attempted Second-Degree Murder with a Firearm
Jim Martin was arrested seven days after the initial attack; he disappeared originally, but police later found him close to the crime scene, according to CBS News. Jim Martin had the knife that he had used to stab his wife, but he said that he was innocent and had only acted in self-defense.
Martin’s defense attorney agrees in his on-air interview with 48 Hours, insisting that his client was a loving husband and had not tried to murder his wife.
“There is not convincing evidence in this case, beyond a reasonable doubt that Mr. Martin intended to kill Christy,” he said during the interview.
Prosecutors, however, disagree. Both Ryan Vescio and Deborah Barr believe that Jim Martin abused his wife, according to CBS News.
Jim Martin testified during the trial that he was scared of his wife at the time and insisted he did not attack her.
Jim Martin was sentenced to 25 years, the mandatory minimum sentence. He had been facing up to life in prison, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
Christy Martin Looked at the Marriage as a Business Agreement
According to CBS News, Christy Martin realized that she was a lesbian when she was young, and she looked at her marriage to Jim Martin as more of a business agreement than a true, romantic love story.
She just wanted to make her parents happy after they were disappointed when they found out about her sexuality. Jim Martin threatened her with this information often, Christy Martin told CBS News.
“He would always say, ‘I’m gonna tell the world you’re a lesbian,'” she told the outlet. “And for whatever reason, you know, I just wasn’t strong enough to say, ‘Go ahead’… I didn’t have that same type of mental strength to overtake him.”
Christy Martin was disappointed in the sentence her husband received, but she believed that it meant that he might be spending the rest of his life in prison because of his age, according to the Orlando Sentinel.
Tune in to 48 Hours to see Christy Martin’s story.