Flanked by friends, Gay Oakes enters Christchurch High Court during her 1994 trial for the murder of her partner, Doug Gardner. She drugged him and buried his body in the garden. At the trial her defence was that she was suffering fom 'battered woman syndrome' following years of beatings and mental torture by Gardner. The jury did not accept this and Oakes was sentenced to life imprisonment, with a minimum non-parole period of 10 years. However she was released early, in 2002, after the Parole Board considered arguments about the impact of battered women's syndrome.
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Photograph by Simon Baker
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