Jeffrey Stern, a prominent attorney in Houston, Texas, was accused of conspiring with his mistress Michelle Gaiser to kill his wife Yvonne Stern. This week, all charges against him have been dropped. Why? Because Gaiser, in revenge, attempted to take out a $20,000 contract against her former lover. Confused yet?
The truth is, Yvonne's husband probably didn't hire the man who made three attempts to kill her, first spraying her home in bullets, then shooting at her from her bushes, and then finally shooting her in the stomach in a parking garage. The evidence doesn't support her husband's guilt.
But he is guilty of having an affair. That much is clear. And Yvonne supports him anyway.
Yes, Yvonne Stern is standing by her husband. And she isn't the only woman to do so. At least he "only" cheated. There are abused women who stand by the men who abused them every day in our courts.
Even though the circumstances are different here (there is no mention of abuse anywhere), one has to wonder with some women whether the money and comfort a husband provides are more important than his character.
Yvonne told ABC News:
Is this the plot of a mastermind? My husband is brilliant. He's smart. He's talented. He would never be capable of doing such a terrible job.
In other words, if he were behind it, she would be dead. It's no one's place to judge another's marriage and an affair isn't the worst thing in the world, it's true. Maybe he -- and others like him -- begged for forgiveness and truly changed. But when the victim of a horrific act is supporting the person accused of committing it, it does make prosecution difficult, does it not?
In some cases, it's simply impossible to prosecute a man accused of doing something to a woman who will not press charges or fight him in court. Too many women want to believe the best about their spouses and lovers to the point of being willing to hurt themselves.
In this case, it seems maybe the husband had an affair with the wrong woman, an insane woman who was capable of killing anyone who got in her way. But it shows a lack of judgement on the part of Jeffrey Stern. He may not be guilty of hiring a man to kill his wife, but he is guilty of hurting his wife in a very deep, very real way. If the victim forgives him and is still with him, how could a court ever find him guilty?
It's curious, indeed.
Do you think women are too forgiving of men?
Image via Two Hawk's Eye/Flickr