In a heartbreaking display of strength, Judy Malinowski bravely testified against her assailant, Michael Slager, from her hospital bed, despite suffering burns that covered 95% of her body. The poignant video of her deposition was played in court a year after her tragic passing, during Slager’s sentencing for aggravated murder, facing the possibility of the death penalty.
Remarkably, even in the face of unimaginable pain and suffering, Malinowski displayed a merciful heart. She expressed to the judge her desire for Slager to spend the rest of his life in prison rather than face execution for his heinous crime. According to her mother, Bonnie Bowes, this act of forgiveness was a reflection of Judy’s true nature—void of anger or vengeance.
Malinowski’s courage and her legacy are highlighted in the documentary “The Fire That Took Her,” set to stream on Paramount+ on May 23, 2022. The film explores her harrowing ordeal, and her fight for justice, and features interviews with her loved ones, including Bowes. It also delves into the legal aspects of the case, with insights from both the victim’s and perpetrator’s legal teams. Judy’s Law, legislation enacted in Ohio in 2017, which imposes stricter penalties on individuals who intentionally disfigure their victims, serves as a testament to Malinowski’s lasting impact.
Bowes expressed her pride in her daughter’s strength and bravery, emphasizing how Judy’s voice not only spoke for herself but also for others affected by domestic violence. During her deposition, Judy’s pain medication had been reduced, allowing her to present a more lucid and reliable account of the events.
The horrifying incident took place on August 2, 2015, outside a gas station in Gahanna, Ohio. Malinowski testified that during an argument, Slager poured gasoline over her while shouting derogatory remarks. As security camera footage revealed, Slager then retrieved a cigarette lighter from his truck and approached Judy, who was desperately pleading for help. He callously set her on fire, displaying no remorse as she screamed in agony. Witnesses at the scene acted swiftly, extinguishing the flames and rushing to her aid.
Bonnie Bowes revealed her initial unease towards Slager when Judy introduced him in January 2015. Despite her daughter’s successful battle against opioid addiction, she recognized Judy’s vulnerability and sensed that something was amiss. Reflecting on her instincts, Bowes expressed her concern and skepticism regarding Slager’s intentions.
Judy Malinowski’s story is one of resilience, highlighting her determination to seek justice while advocating for victims of domestic violence. Her unwavering courage continues to inspire, leaving a lasting impact on those who fight against similar injustices. Read the original article on Insider