“You didn’t have to kill him,” judge tells killer as she is sentenced

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Attorney John Ingrassia on left, stands next to his client, Nicole Addimando, as she is sentenced to prison.

POUGHKEEPSIE -Dutchess County Court Judge Edward McLoughlin, Tuesday, sentenced 31-year-old Nicole Addimando to 19-years to life in prison on the charge of second-degree murder for the September 29, 2017 murder of her boyfriend, Christopher Grover, with whom she had two children. 

The defendant was found guilty by a jury consisting of eight women and four men in April of 2019.  In addition to the sentence for murder, Addimando was sentenced to 15 years in prison with five years of post-release supervision for the conviction of criminal possession of a weapon.

The jury that convicted Addimando did not believe the testimony of the defendant who had claimed they were arguing when she lunged and shot at him.  Judge McLoughlin noted that Grover’s body was found on the couch, with his arms across his midsection and his legs out in front of him, with a contact wound from a gunshot to his temple.  The prosecution had argued that the victim was asleep when she shot the 30-year-old and the jury agreed.

Addimando’s defense team, led by John Ingrassia, claimed that their client was the victim of prolonged domestic violence and sought to have a more lenient sentence under the Domestic Violence Survivors Act at a hearing earlier this month.  McLoughlin denied that request and reiterated his reasoning at Tuesday’s sentencing, noting that the defendant had could have left on multiple occasions.  McLoughlin told the packed courtroom of how he had re-read the transcripts of Addimando’s three days of testimony on Monday before the sentencing. 

The judge recognized that Addimando had been abused as a five-year-old “and it’s clear you have been abused by other men.”  He went on to admonish the defendant saying “Anger, despair, and disharmony are not a defense.”

The potential sentence for the murder charge was 25-to-life in prison.  “Your life sentence is having to explain to your children what you have done,” McLoughlin said to Addimando.  “You will forfeit a large amount of your future.  You didn’t have to kill him.”

Prior to being given the sentence, the defendant, through tears, told the court “I’m so sorry.  I’m sorry for what I did and didn’t do.”  With her legal team flanking her, she continued, saying “I was afraid to stay.  I was afraid to leave,” adding that “This is why women don’t leave.”

The murder occurred in the Town of Poughkeepsie but was prosecuted by the Putnam County District Attorney’s Office due to a conflict in Dutchess.  Putnam Chief Assistant District Attorney Chana Krauss led the prosecution.