A MAJOR update came on Wednesday in the case of a teenager who is accused of killing her alleged sexual abuser.
The Wisconsin Supreme Court has ruled in favor of Chrystul Kizer, who allegedly shot and killed Randall Phillip Volar when she was 17.
Kizer, now 22, met Volar when she was 16 and he was 33.
On June 5, 2018, she allegedly shot Volar twice in the head at his home in Kenosha, Wisconsin, before torching his body and fleeing the scene.
Kizer and her attorneys claim Volar subjected her to a series of assaults and sold her online for sex.
Kizer’s defense team wants to use a Wisconsin law that gives trafficking victims legal protection if they commit crimes.
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In order to use the provision in defense, a defendant needs to prove their actions were a direct result of the abuse.
In a 4-3 ruling on Wednesday, the state Supreme Court upheld a lower court’s decision to side with Kizer and allow the direct result case to be made at trial.
“We hold that an offense is “committed as a direct result” of a violation of the human-trafficking statutes if there is a logical, causal connection between the offense and the trafficking such that the offense is not the result, in significant part, of other events, circumstances, or considerations apart from the trafficking violation,” the opinion read.
If a jury buys Kizer’s argument, she could be acquitted.
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“Today’s decision brings needed clarity regarding the scope of the affirmative defense for survivors of the vile crime of human trafficking,” Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul, who argued against Kizer, said in a statement to the Washington Post.
Colleen Marion, one of Kizer’s public defenders, told the Post that ”the legal process on this matter is far from over.”
“We, along with Chrystul and her family, believe the decision today affirms the legal rights provided by Wisconsin statute to victims of sex trafficking facing criminal charges,” she said.
Kizer was charged with first-degree intentional homicide, operating a motor vehicle without the owner’s consent, arson, possession of a firearm by a felon, and bail jumping, according to the court ruling.
Kizer has said she met Volar online and he sold her for sex.
Volar, a white man, had been previously arrested for sexually abusing a black child and was in possession of child pornography, including content he had filmed, the Post reported.
In interviews with the Post, Kizer, who is black, said Volar was trying to pull down her jeans, and she panicked and attacked him.
Volar allegedly paid for an Uber for Kizer to take her to his home in Kenosha from Milwaukee.
He previously paid her for sex, and she briefly lived with him, she claimed.
She told investigators she was tired of Volar’s abuse.
She was jailed for over two years before supporters posted her $400,000 bond in the summer of 2020.
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There was public outcry about the case when Kyle Rittenhouse, a white man, who is also from Wisconsin, was acquitted in a trial for killing people in Kenosha, claiming self-defense.
Kizer’s next court appearance will be in September.