I Was Lorena Bobbitt (2020) Movie Script

Oh my God, are you okay?
- I don't know.
- Were you in an accident?
No, it's John.
I think, I-I think I hurt him.
Lorena, what did you do?
You might remember me
from the news.
Satellite dishes
sprouted like weeds
outside the county courthouse
in Manassas Virginia.
This is a classic tabloid story,
it's got sex and blood.
Back then, people laugh at me,
made cruel jokes.
They didn't want to hear
about the truth,
about the abuse I suffered.
Everybody argues, but to
cut a man's penis off for it?
There's no sense in that.
You might know my name,
but you don't know my story.
I came to live in America
when I was 18.
To me, this was the best
country in the world.
I wanted the American Dream.
Today, I use my maiden name,
Lorena Gallo.
But back then,
I went by a different one.
Back then, I was Lorena Bobbitt.
To understand the truth
of what really happened,
we need to go back to the night
when I first met
John Wayne Bobbitt.
I'm right here!
Excuse me?
Well, you're clearly
looking for me.
The most handsome guy
in the place.
Uh, no. My friend, Yvonne,
she's out there.
Okay. Let's go find her.
Uh, I can't dance.
That's okay.
Neither can I.
Who cares?
They'll all be looking at
how pretty you are anyway.
Your accent,
uh, where is it from?
Um, I was born in Ecuador,
but my family moved to
Venezuela when I was seven.
Uh, Upstate New York,
But I just got back from a tour
in Okinawa.
You were in the American Army
in Japan?
I'm a marine.
What was Japan like?
It was beautiful.
Lot of history,
food was amazing,
people real friendly.
That's so wonderful.
I... I only been to the U.S.,
but I want to travel everywhere
and see so many countries.
Stick with me,
you might just get your wish.
What about you?
What are you doing in Virginia?
I go to school,
and I'm a nanny for a nice
lady, Miss Janna.
You laugh at me.
I know, I know,
my English is so bad.
No, I'm...
I'm just looking at how
beautiful you are.
How come you don't have
a boyfriend?
Well, looks like we'll have
to change that.
Good morning, this is
Corporal John Bobbitt.
May I please speak to Lorena?
She said you might call.
If you want to see her,
you need to come to the house
so I can meet you.
You mean, like an interview?
Lorena lives under my roof.
She cannot date anyone
without my permission.
Those are the rules.
Okay, I'll see you tomorrow.
He's a soldier I met last night.
He's really cute,
and he's so nice to me.
You've only been here
a couple months.
You don't waste any time.
Oh, it's not like that.
He just ask me to dance,
and then we talk...
I think I like him.
Only fools rush in, Lorena.
But if he doesn't have three
eyes and a hump on his back,
I'll let you go out with him.
Oh, thank you, Mrs. Castro!
But only,
and always, chaperoned.
He'll think I'm a child.
Then he's not worth you.
Your mother would kill me
if I didn't look after you.
I hired you to be my son's
nanny, not a maid.
Can I ask you a question?
You have this big,
beautiful house,
a nice car,
you own two nail salons...
About to have three.
And you do it all alone,
no husband.
It's very impressive.
I want to know,
how do you get that?
A helluva lotta hard work.
The new store in Centerville
opens next week!
You know I'm very grateful
for this job,
and... and Kyle,
he's such a good boy,
but... I think...
You want more.
Do you think I could ever
work at your nail store?
- What about Kyle?
- Oh, I can do both.
I can work at the nail store
while Kyle is at school,
and then I can come home
and stay with him
until you get back home.
You know, I think you could,
I'd be happy to train you.
Thank you.
Um, I had a really nice time.
How many times have I told
you, John?
No kissing.
Uh, jeez, Mrs. C,
we've been seeing each other
for a month now.
You didn't say I can't kiss you
Such a bad boy.
What's he doing with a bike?
He rode it in from Quantico.
In this weather?
That's 20 miles away!
Uh, 25, actually.
But I would ride twice that far
just to see my princess.
I'll see you next week.
So... you and John are
getting kinda serious, huh?
I guess so.
It's been eight months.
I don't get what you see in him.
You don't like John?
He kinda drinks a lot.
And he always "happens"
to forget his wallet
whenever we go out.
John's a good guy.
Why can't you be happy for me?
Hey, Warden,
could I have a minute
with my girl?
I asked you not to call me that.
I'm gonna go get some fries.
All right, grab me a beer.
She keeps eating like that,
she'll never find a boyfriend.
That's not nice, John.
Oh, what do I care?
Besides, she's not nearly
as hot as you...
and your sexy little body.
I uh...
found something
by the pool table.
Do you wanna see what it is?
I know it's not much,
and I know I just found it,
here you are.
Until I get a real diamond.
Are you asking me to marry you?
It's more of a promise.
I don't wanna lose you.
But I'm not going anywhere.
Yeah, but you've got this
great job working at the salon
and I don't want some other guy
to come by
and scoop you up.
I wouldn't do that.
I'm happy with you.
And I wanna keep it that way.
I want you, Lorena,
all to myself.
I love you.
I love you, too.
I built fantasies of us
spending our lives together,
living around the world,
making a family.
I was 19, I've never
dated anyone,
and John was my first love.
I do.
Do you love me?
Forever and ever.
Is that a new blouse?
Did you go shopping without me?
I got it from the PX
at Quantico.
Now that I'm married,
I get base privileges.
Oh, and there's an amazing
grocery store,
and gas is half the price there.
I just feel so blessed with
everything that's happened.
You know,
if John's got any buddies
that you want to set me up with
then, I wouldn't mind having
your life, either.
Maybe you would like Todd.
Who's that?
And is he as hot as John?
No one is as handsome as John.
And Todd is his cousin.
He came from New York,
he's staying with us for awhile.
I mean, you've only been
married a couple of weeks
and somebody's already living
with you?
That seems kinda messed up.
They grew up together.
John says they're like brothers.
Still, so what?
Your place is tiny!
And, I mean,
that's gotta cramp your...
your "newlywed" activities.
We find... time.
Besides, family is very
important to the both of us.
And John says it'll only be
for a couple of weeks.
Well, John says a lot of things.
What do you say?
Maybe we'll go on a double date?
Hey, baby.
What's got you so excited?
A surprise!
I made reservations for us at
Blackbird's tonight for dinner.
- That fancy place in DC?
- Mm-hmm.
- I can't afford that.
- I can!
I got my first paycheck today.
Uh, yeah, I guess.
But that,
that place is so stuffy.
Let's just go to Chelsea's.
But I want to celebrate...
some place special.
Hey, Chelsea's has wings.
Oh, you love wings!
You wanna make me happy,
don't you?
Hey! Grab your jacket, cous,
we're headed to Chelsea's.
Lorena's treat.
Isn't she the best?
Awesome, dude.
- John. John.
- What?
I thought it was just
supposed to be the two of us.
Don't be rude, babe.
Look... if one of your family
was staying with us,
we'd include them.
John, come on, let's go.
We just got more shots.
I'm hungry, and this is no fun.
I dunno, Todd and I are
having a blast.
Okay, fine. You two stay
and take a cab home.
I'm leaving.
Oh yeah?
John, you're too drunk.
Give me the keys.
I drive tanks for a living.
I got this.
John, slow down,
you're going 85.
I know what I'm doing.
John, I'm serious. Slow down!
You're going to get us killed.
Shut up!
I know what I'm doing!
Don't ever do that again!
You were in the other lane.
What the hell do you know?
You're not even
from this country.
Stop crying. I didn't even
hit you that hard.
I told you to stop crying!
The door is open, Todd!
Is everything okay in here?
Sir, have you been drinking?
Uh, a few beers, but I'm okay.
I was passing by and saw
a scuffle through the window.
Oh, we, uh, we just moved in.
We haven't had a time
to put up um...
put up the curtains yet.
What about the fight?
It's not like that.
She gets paranoid sometimes,
and I... I just have to calm
her down.
Right, baby?
Ma'am, are you okay?
Do you wanna stay here?
You have someone
who you can stay with?
But I want to leave anyway.
You betcha. Come on.
I kept telling myself
this is gonna pass
and everything's gonna be okay.
It didn't.
We were in the apartment,
in the bedroom, and...
he made me have sex.
After, I...
I went to the kitchen and...
I took the knife.
Then I don't remember. I...
And then there was so much
Yeah, we're aware of
the incident, ma'am.
But, uh, what I need
to know now is, is...
where it is.
The appendage -
what did you do with it?
What about what that bastard
did to her to make her do this?
This woman's husband
is here in this hospital
and he's in critical condition.
John's here?
Please, please,
don't let him find me.
No, ma'am, I don't think
that's possible.
He's in pretty bad shape.
What we need to do now
is to locate... "it"
to see if they can sew it
back on.
I threw it out the car window...
on Old C-C-Centreville Road,
n-near a convenience store.
Send them out.
Do a grid search on Old
around the convenience store.
Okay, so a, a nurse is gonna
come in
and, uh, administer a PERK exam.
Do you know what that is?
It's a rape kit, honey.
They're gonna collect evidence
so they can prove
what John did to you.
All right, ya'll sit tight.
The nurse'll be right in.
Can I go home after that?
We're a long way from that.
A lot of what happened
the first night was a blur,
but I do remember being
I have no idea that what
I've done
will change my life forever.
John came in the bedroom
and he took off his clothes
but he kept his underwears on.
He... he kept them on?
You said earlier
he took them off.
Okay, maybe he took them off.
So which one is it,
Mrs. Bobbitt?
Did he keep them on
or take it off?
He kept them on.
Are we gonna be here much
She's been at this all night.
She hasn't slept...
Just a couple more questions.
You said earlier you tried
to scream.
- Yes.
- And uh...
your husband's friend, Robbie -
is that his name?
Robbie Johnston.
He came to stay with us
from New York.
He and John went out drinking.
So... Robbie's sleeping
on a couch
in the living room,
and he doesn't hear anything?
The bedroom door was closed.
Still, I'm sure he could've
easily heard you
if, indeed, you did yell.
Are you insinuating that
she didn't?
This is an official police
So, I'm gonna tell you
one last time
to please refrain from talking.
I was interrogated
for more than 14 hours,
kept awake all night.
I didn't understand
what was happening
and my English then,
it wasn't so good.
I was never offered
a translator or an attorney
to help me to navigate through
the answers or questions.
I told him that...
he shouldn't do this to me.
And? Did he reply?
He said he doesn't
care about my feelings.
I ask him...
if he has orgasm inside of me
because it hurt me
when he made me do that.
He always... have orgasm
and he doesn't wait for me
to have orgasm.
He's selfish,
and I don't think it's fair.
So I...
I-I-I pulled,
I pulled back the sheets
and did...
and then...
I did it.
I couldn't even understand
how to put the word "rape".
I... that did not exist
in my vocabulary.
And, uh, I, I might say things
that it wouldn't help through
my case
and I was basically
incriminating myself.
What I meant was
that John was just taking
what he wanted.
I tried to live a quiet life
and stay away from
the public eye.
John immediately started
to do interviews
and, uh, the press loved it,
and, all of a sudden,
I became a national joke.
Comedian: Waking up
and your dick is cut off?
I feel bad for him, you know.
You go to bed a large
and wake up an extra small.
I guess he has a bone
to pick with her after that.
And now everyone wants
to know why.
I'll tell you why: she's crazy.
That's your answer.
Never mind jail time,
someone needs to make sure
that lady
is never near a knife again.
A knife, scissors,
hell, a dull spoon.
But enough about...
It was like no one saw
or cared about the domestic
that I had been experiencing
for years.
That made me feel worthless,
like I didn't matter.
Come on, it's gonna be okay.
You say that, but you're not
up there on the TV.
Everyone is laughing at me,
judging me.
That man, my husband, he...
he beat me,
he raped me.
Why does everyone think
that's so funny?
You can't listen to that.
And John was charged
with assault.
He's gonna be found guilty.
I don't know.
He lies every time he's on
the radio or the TV.
And he's going to lie in court
and people will believe him.
Look who's the early bird!
I had to, uh, take John
to Quantico at 7 am,
his car broke down.
Janna, can I ask you a question?
When you were married,
did you ever fought
with your husband?
Fight. It's "fight"
not "fought".
Is that why you're here
so early?
Hell, if Larry ever asked me
to get up at six o'clock
to take him to work, you bet we
would've gone a couple rounds.
No, it's not that.
It's just...
I didn't think people yell
in a marriage.
My parents have been married
for 30 years
and I never hear them
speak mean.
All couples argue sometimes,
it's part of the package.
I need coffee.
You're not gonna speak to me?
I don't understand what
happened last night.
How could you do that?
I know, I've been...
thinking about it all day.
Guess I was just worried
you were gonna make me wreck.
You were drunk, John.
Zigzagging all over the road.
You could've killed us!
I think you're being
a little bit over dramatic.
You punched me.
You hurt me, John.
I know, and I feel horrible,
but what's done is done.
Can't we just put this
behind us?
You want me to forget about it?
I don't think I can.
Everybody makes mistakes, baby.
It wasn't me,
it was the alcohol.
But then maybe you should
stop drinking.
If that's what you want.
It'll help.
but I already know
this will never happen again.
You promise?
I love you.
But you really shouldn't
have grabbed the wheel.
This whole thing
could've been avoided.
I guess you're right, I'm sorry.
I'll make it up to you.
Labor Day weekend,
we'll go to Ocean City.
Invite a friend for Todd,
we'll have a great time.
All right.
See anything here you like?
As long as there's hamburgers
and beer, John'll be happy.
Oh please!
You couldn't handle us!
Really? Right in front
of my face.
What're you talking about?
Thought we were here
to have a nice dinner.
We are. Teri and I are
This what you do when I'm not
here? You pick up guys
and you screw them?
What? No! We were-
- Do you think I'm stupid?!
- John, calm down!
Lorena wasn't doing anything.
It was me flirting.
Weekend's over. Let's go.
Let's go!
You just had to ruin
a perfectly good vacation,
didn't you?
It's not my fault.
You're the one who decided
to leave.
What am I, an idiot?
Leave you there to have sex
with every guy on the beach?
You're crazy.
Nothing happened.
It's not what it looked like
to me.
Guys only respond to women
who are sending them signals,
and from what I saw,
you were Radio damn Moscow.
Hey, I am talking to you!
Hey! What're you doing?!
Hey! Shut the hell up
and stay out of this
or I'll stop the car right here
on the freeway
and drop your fat ass off
on the side of the road!
One of the most
hurtful things John did
was to plant the seed in my head
that everything was my fault;
that I brought out the worst
in him.
And for a long time,
I believed him.
Look at you getting in
the Christmas spirit.
It's okay I bought it
without you?
Of course.
I like that you're so into
the holidays.
You still have to tell me what
you want Santa to bring you.
Oh, nothing fancy.
Just something that tells me
you love me.
So a hot little lace teddy,
it is, then.
- It's fake.
- I know.
I couldn't tell either
until I got up close.
Family always had a real tree.
Really? That's so funny
because my family always used
this kind.
I think maybe because,
in Venezuela,
Christmastime is in the summer,
so we don't have these kind
of trees then.
I want a real one!
Such a waste of money.
Since when do you make
the financial decisions
in this family?
Come on, John, don't be mad.
We can use this tree
for years and years.
It's what my family does.
Your family?
Well, if you like
your family so much,
why don't you go back home
to Brazil?
Venezuela, John, you know that.
Besides, this is my home now.
Only if I say it is.
I can get you kicked out
of this country tomorrow.
I got my visa before we met.
My status has nothing to do
with you.
You think they're gonna
believe that?
I was born here.
You are an illegal alien.
No, I'm not.
I live here legally.
Who do you think they're
gonna believe?
Why, why are you being so mean?
It's Christmas.
Because you're such
an idiot sometimes,
it drives me crazy!
I'm not stupid.
John, stop!
John's attacks
got worse and worse.
Anything could set him off.
It was like this bomb
that eventually it will explode,
but I never knew when.
I never knew what was gonna
What did you do?
Nothing much.
John just grilled some
Oh my gosh, what happened?
Oh, uh, nothing.
Uh, the trunk of my car,
it came crashing down on me.
Um, excuse me.
I'm really worried about you.
Don't be.
Because I have the best news
in the world.
What's for dinner?
Wait. Please tell me you did
not screw up and get pregnant.
But we talk about this, John.
You know I want to have kids.
Did you even think this through?
How're you gonna take care
of it?
You work all the time.
I'll quit my job.
And live on what - my salary?
I don't make enough,
according to you, remember?
Oh... brilliant, Lorena.
As usual.
Always using that head.
I thought you wanted a baby!
Yeah, right.
No, there is only one thing
to do.
Ah, look, somebody
who'll understand you.
Call. Make an appointment.
I'm having this baby.
Then you do it on your own.
Or trap another asshole
to take care of it
'cause I sure as hell am not.
Please, John, this is our baby!
You have a decision to make!
It is either me
or that "thing".
I'm going to Chelsea's.
Oh, um...
let me know...
if I need to start packing.
You know they're gonna use
Like... big needles.
Stop it.
Needles so big,
they go right through
your bones.
And I've heard that they
stopped using anesthesia,
so you feel...
every little thing.
Is everything okay over here?
May I please sit somewhere else?
Of course, we can take you
back early,
get you comfortable there.
Sir, I'm going to have
to ask you to leave.
I'll be in the car.
Are you sure you wanna have
this procedure?
We can talk about other options.
I just want to get it over with.
Both charged with crimes.
He with marital sexual assault,
me with malicious wounding.
Here I am going through
a very traumatic experience
and basically,
be on trial by society.
Imagine losing all your privacy
Reporter 1: Cut off your
husband's Johnson?
Do you see yourself
as a hero to women?
Please, leave me alone!
Reporter 1: Should a man really
go to jail
for having sex
with his own wife?
If he was really beating you,
why didn't you tell anyone?
Leave me alone!
The media was feeding into
the lurid details
instead of actually, um...
even consider domestic violence,
uh, to talk about this issue
that is affecting
millions of millions of,
of people.
What're ya'll talking
about in there?
Okay I may not know
the Espagnol,
but I know my own name!
Uh, Mama was just saying
how beautiful our new house is.
Isn't that nice?
Oh, whatever my girl wants,
she gets.
Uh, how is your game?
Down to the last few minutes.
When's dinner? I'm starving.
Oh, like mother, like daughter.
Well, let's just see
if she dances like you, too.
La-da-da... da-da...
Okay, you two, that's enough.
Come on.
You, John, out.
We have cooking to do.
John, since your game is
almost over,
it's okay if we change
the channel?
They're rerunning
the Macy's parade
and Mama really wants to see it.
Yeah, that's a big ole negatory.
This is Skins and Broncos,
and I got fifty bucks on
the Skins to win.
John, you're not gambling,
are you?
Don't start with me, Lorena.
Not today.
What the hell, Lorena. I told
you I was watching the game!
Mama just wanted to see
the balloons.
Are you deaf?! I said no!
Now, give me,
give me the remote.
Missed the touchdown,
now the Skins lost.
Way to go, Lorena.
I didn't make them lose!
What's the matter with you?
Do you get some sick pleasure
out of making me miserable?
You know that's not true, John.
This is my mother's last day
It will make her very happy
to watch the program.
Yeah, okay.
Two can play that game.
What's happening?
Now nobody can watch TV!
Stop it!
You're embarrassing me
in front of my mother.
Oh, please, like your mom
understands a word I'm saying.
John, stop acting like a child
and give me the keys!
God, you're such a bitch!
Always trying to humiliate me
in front of your family.
John, stop! Let go!
Let go!
John, let go!
Come on.
I'd like to report an attack.
So many people have asked me,
"Why didn't you get help?"
I try.
I reach out to a lot of people.
I called 911
and the police six times,
but I never got the help
or protection I needed.
The only thing it did
was make John more violent.
You called the Marines!
Do you have any idea
what you've done?!
You can't hide from me!
I will always find you!
No, no, no!
It's important to remember
I was only 22-years-old.
I had barely survived the abuse.
Now, I was facing
a new nightmare.
Okay, we got some less
than-positive news today.
The District Attorney's office
has decided
that John should only be charged
with "marital sexual assault."
But he raped me.
Well, Virginia law states
that the charge of rape
can only be applied to couples
who aren't living together
at the time of the incident
or when there is serious
physical injury to the victim,
which is you.
Neither of those elements
apply here.
So, the law says that...
my husband can rape me...
as long as he doesn't
beat me up?
Unfortunately, yes,
uh, that's how the statute's
currently written.
How is that fair?
He was abusing me.
I was just... protecting myself.
And we're gonna hammer that
really hard at your trial.
Lorena, right now,
we need to pay attention
to John's case.
The evidence they lay out,
how they-they spin his side
of the story...
What happens if they say
I'm guilty?
You have to understand that
this charge
of malicious wounding
is a serious one.
If you stand trial
and are found guilty,
you could be looking at...
20 years in prison.
I thought I was the only woman,
perhaps in the world,
that was going through this
type of abuse
and, uh, I was ashamed.
It's like living with a stranger
that you don't know how bad
he's gonna react.
It's 3 am, John. Can you please
turn down the noise?
Sure, get right on it.
John, I have to get up
for work in three hours.
This is why you buy
the big satellite dish,
to watch this dirt?
Well, if I can't get it at home,
at least I can watch it
on the TV.
We have sex all the time.
If that's what you call lying
there like a dead fish.
I went to the bank today.
You took all the money from
the account. What for?
Great, now you're spying on
me too?
What is the money for?
I needed tools for my car!
I don't believe you.
I work hard, I save,
I cut coupons,
I buy my clothes
from the Goodwill...
Yeah, trust me, I can tell.
I mean, God forbid you put in
a little effort,
try to look sexy for me.
And for what?
For you to throw all of it away
on toys -
this big TV, the satellite dish,
your gas-drinking car?
You don't have a job!
There's no food in the house.
Judging by the size of your ass,
you can afford to skip
a few meals.
- Turn it off.
- Shhh!
You're making me miss
the good part.
Ahhh! No, no, John, please!
Please, no!
No! No! No!
No! No! John, please!
I don't want this!
John, please!
Oh, it's so much more fun
this way.
No, not for me!
If I can describe um...
the um... psychological
and emotional abuse
that I endure
at the hands of my abuser,
I felt like a hostage
in my own house.
I thought he would stop,
that I could make it better,
but he just keep doing it.
And now he took my temporary
green card
and my papers with him.
Where did he go?
Back to New York.
He said that immigration
is gonna come
and throw me out of my country.
No. No, they won't.
John constantly
threatened me with deportation
even though my visa status
had nothing to do with him.
He basically used my visa status
as another weapon to control me.
I'm gonna send these to the INS.
What good will that do?
You can seek asylum
as an abused spouse,
get your permanent green card.
John says they won't believe me.
With these, how can they not?
Mercedes sent those
photos to INS,
but they never responded.
John's trial was first.
Mine was second.
Supporter: You got this, John.
Bailiff: Will the defendant
please rise?
Judge: In the case of
the People of Virginia
versus John Wayne Bobbitt,
the jury finds the defendant...
not guilty...
of marital sexual assault.
The defendant is free to go.
Juror: The jury was persuaded
by Mr. Bobbitt's lawyer
that the case was
too circumstantial.
We couldn't rely on
Mrs. Bobbitt's word alone.
If someone had heard her scream
or there'd been some sort of
that'd be more substantive
The law said that evidence
from previous abuse
was inadmissible.
That still upsets me
to this day.
Get lost!
Would you creeps get a life?!
News In the city
of Manassas, Virginia,
where John Bobbitt
was found not guilty
of sexually assaulting his wife.
Lorena now faces a charge
of malicious wounding
and could get up to 20 years.
The Washington Post reported
Friday that...
It doesn't make any sense.
He admit he hit me.
How can the jury take his side?
It's such bullshit.
Sweetie, you gotta eat
I can't.
All the press out there,
honking their horns,
banging on the door.
I can't sleep.
I'm having nightmares.
Don't let them win.
Your trial starts in a month.
You need to stay healthy
so that you can fight back
and, and prove your innocence.
Oh my God...
if they took his side,
they're not going to believe me.
Am I going to go to prison?
Howard: I'm not gonna lie
to you,
John's acquittal is a blow
to our case.
We need to tweak our strategy
a little bit,
so I've added Ms. Kemler
to our team.
I need you to listen,
and I need you to keep
an open mind.
We'd like to introduce
Battered Women Syndrome
as part of your defense.
Now, you should know it's risky.
It's only been used in court
a couple times
as a viable defense.
If you think it'll help,
then yes.
In addition, we'd like
to plead irresistible impulse.
What does that mean?
Well, we would argue
that you, the defendant,
couldn't control your actions
as a result of a mental
It's a type of insanity plea.
But I'm not crazy.
Here, here's the deal, Lorena.
I'm-I'm not blaming you at all,
nor am I judging you
for what you did.
But you already said you did it,
you confessed to the police.
If I do something, I take
responsibility for it.
So, given that,
we need to argue why you did it.
Lorena, we need to put you
up on the stand
so that you can tell everyone
what John did to you.
You want me to...
say this out loud
in front of everyone...
in a courtroom?
I can't do that.
I'm going out with friends
tonight after work,
Mrs. Castro, okay?
Uh, don't wait up,
and don't worry!
Mrs. Castro: Be safe, dear.
Oh, I'll get it!
Hey, you...
What're you doing here?
I just drove all night
from New York.
Uh, I wanted to catch you
before you went to work.
I haven't seen or heard
from you in over a year.
I don't want to talk to you now.
Then don't, just...
just listen.
I've had a lot of time
to think about...
what's important
since I've been gone.
I got counselling, uh,
from Father McMahon,
and I talked to some older
married couples and...
they said that I should admit
my faults,
uh, beg you for forgiveness,
and uh...
and hope and pray that you...
might uh...
uh, give me another chance.
I can't just magically erase
everything you did
and said to me.
Oh, I'm not asking you to.
All I want is for another
chance to make you happy.
I-I know I can do that.
If we try again,
you have to promise
not to hurt me.
I'm gonna stop drinking,
and I am committed to working
on our marriage.
Swear to me
that, as my husband,
you won't hurt me.
On my honor as a Marine.
People ask why
I went back with him.
It's difficult to explain who
and what I was back then.
I was 22-years-old,
a Catholic,
a virgin before I met him.
I believed so much in marriage.
When he came back, I thought,
"What if he has changed?"
Didn't I owe it to our marriage
to find out?
Looks him dead in the eye...
Of course, now I know
that's part of the cycle
of abuse.
Hoping it'll get better,
when really, we know it won't.
- Robbie.
- Hi.
- Nice to see you again.
- I told John
I wouldn't get in the way.
I'll make up the couch.
It's not very comfortable,
but it should do
for a couple of weeks.
John can you go grab the extra
pair of sheets, please?
Uh, we were just going
to the hardware store
to get some plywood.
What for?
Uh, building a partition,
so Robbie can have his own room.
I thought you said it was
just for a couple weeks.
Dude, you said it was cool
that I could live with you guys.
What happened to working on
our marriage?
- We're doing that, baby!
- With Robbie here?
I-I don't have money for
my own place, man.
Yeah, don't worry about it.
Lorena's just being bitchy.
Seriously? Uncool.
You happy now?
You made him leave.
Is he going to pay the rent?
Buy food? Pay the electric...
It just doesn't stop
with you, does it?!
Just nag, nag, nag!
At least Robbie can leave.
So can I.
Where do you think you're going?
Away from you.
It's been six months
since you came back.
You don't have a job,
you flirt with other girls
right under my nose,
you started drinking again,
and you'd rather hang out
with your friends
than spend time with me
in this marriage.
I'm done.
I want a divorce.
divorcing me.
I say when we're finished!
Doesn't matter if we're
divorced or separated.
You know I can find you...
and I can screw you
whenever I want.
You're mine, Lorena.
Don't forget it.
Thank you.
Thank you so much
for letting me come over.
I didn't know who else
to talk to.
You know I'm always here
for you.
Now what's going on?
It's John...
I was really hoping it would
work out this time.
I know now that
he'll never change.
The marriage,
it's over.
Oh, honey, I'm so sorry.
Do you wanna stay here?
The guest room is all made up.
It doesn't matter.
He knows where you live.
He might try to hurt you, too.
Well, I'd like to see him try.
He watches...
every move I make.
Sometimes I think...
he follows me.
How can I help?
I want a divorce, but...
I'm so scared of him,
of what he'll do
if I try to leave.
I don't know what to do.
I have an idea.
Back then, there was
no national hotline for me
or any abused women to call.
We didn't have federal
funding for shelters
and the Violence Against
Women's Act
wouldn't become law
until the following year.
For desperate women, like me,
stuck in these situations,
we were often forced to take
desperate measures
and protect ourselves
because the system didn't.
What're you doing here?
Still live here, remember?
I thought you said you were
going out with Robbie tonight.
Yeah, he's waiting in
the car. I forgot my wallet.
Ah, shit! Ugh!
I need some cash.
What the hell is this?
It's mine, John. Don't...
You will be
nothing without me, right?!
Why the hell are you
recording me?
A worthless, stupid...
- No! No!
- Answer me!
Dude, hurry up
or we're gonna miss Happy Hour!
Just saying goodbye to wifey.
You're gonna pay for this later.
Let's go.
And about how
many times would you say
your husband's hit you?
Five? Ten?
What else has your husband done?
I, I don't... um...
it's private.
If you want to file this
petition, Mrs. Bobbitt,
you're going to have tell me
what your husband's done.
Please, sir...
you don't understand.
This is very difficult for me.
Yes, but we need
to know the details
for the official record.
He um...
he kick me,
he punch me,
and he...
choke me... hard,
and then...
the, the sex.
Excuse me?
Sex. He, he...
he, he make me
when I don't want to.
Please, this is very hard
to talk about.
Okay, you're going to need
to appear in front of a judge
to file the official petition.
- Now?
- After this gets typed up.
Problem is,
my secretary's at lunch.
So, come back this afternoon
and she can walk you through
the rest of it.
You mean, I...
I have to say these...
personal things again?
If you want to file this
petition, you do.
She gets back at one.
I... I can't do that.
My job...
What about after work?
I have to go home.
He'll wonder where I am.
Well, I don't know what
to tell you, Mrs. Bobbitt.
Without the petition,
we can't process
the order of protection.
What would you like to do?
Agh! What's wrong with you?
I'm so sorry. I'll... I'll...
I'll be right back. I have
to go get some antiseptic.
We got some good news, Lorena.
Prosecution's offered us
a plea deal.
What does that mean?
It means that if you admit
your actions were premeditated,
you'll only have to serve
four months in prison.
No, thank you.
it's a good deal.
You should consider it.
I married John
because I loved him.
And even though...
he hurt me, over and over again,
I thought he could change.
But he didn't.
Then, he went to court
and he lied.
Now it's my turn.
Now I get to tell the judge
what really happened.
What that monster did to me.
Starting Monday, this usually
quiet courthouse
will become the center of an
international media circus.
So, get ready for another round
of Bobbitt mania.
This is a case about anger,
about revenge,
about retribution.
Mrs. Bobbitt's husband
came home,
he was drunk,
he wanted to have sex
and she didn't,
and that is her right.
So, he forced her to have sex
and she was angry,
and she retaliated against him.
But, you know, folks,
we don't live in a society
that is governed by revenge.
We live in a society of law.
And after you've heard all
of the evidence,
I'm confident that you will
that there was no justification
for her taking the law
into her own hands,
for her maiming her husband,
and you will have no choice
but to find her guilty.
I don't think I can testify.
John is still my husband,
and he's in that room every day
watching me.
Sometimes, I...
I think he's going to jump
over the rail
And, and grab me or, or, or...
choke me
if I tell everyone
what he did to me.
You just tell the truth, Lorena.
And don't you worry about John.
We're gonna take care of him.
On the night of the incident,
you went out with your friend
and you had at least 5 beers,
is that right?
And you had approximately
two B52s?
It wasn't approximately,
it was exactly two.
Thank you for clarifying that.
Did you feel any effects
of the alcohol at all?
No. None whatsoever.
How would you characterize
your state
after drinking that night?
Robbie: I was drunk.
We were drunk.
Do you remember when
Officer Francis
stopped by your first apartment?
Yes. He just knocked on
the door,
asked if everything
was all right
and he just left.
And you were drinking very
heavily on that occasion,
weren't you, Mr. Bobbitt?
Yeah, he'd definitely been
I could smell it on his breath.
And you've already told us
that you simply never hit
your wife.
Tell me about your trip
to Ocean City.
He was hitting her
and punching her
and pulling her hair.
The jury won't give anything
he says credibility now.
John's trial lasted
only three days.
Mine was 12.
As the days dragged on,
all I kept thinking was,
"The jury thinks I'm guilty."
And because the judge
let cameras into my trial,
the whole world heard
the most personal,
intimate details of my life.
I felt naked.
Did you and John ever engage in
anything other than vaginal sex?
He did it, sir.
I didn't.
When did it happen?
we went into the bedroom
and he um...
he grabbed me and...
and he turned me,
and uh...
I was... I was...
with my stomach down...
and then he um...
and then he did it.
He, he, he...
he have uh...
he have, uh, anal sex.
Did he ask you if he could?
No. No.
Did you give him permission?
No. No.
Was it forced?
Yes, it was.
Were you injured?
Yes. I...
What injuries did you sustain?
I was bleeding, sir.
Did he ever threaten
to do it again?
Yes, sir. Yes.
How frequently?
uh, e-every time that...
that we would have sex,
he would...
he would threaten me.
Okay, Lorena. Okay.
Do you have an opinion,
Dr. Feister,
as to whether Lorena Bobbitt
was suffering
from any kind of severe mental
disease or disorder
at the time when she cut off
her husband's penis?
Yes, she suffered from post
traumatic stress disorder,
major depressive disorder,
and anxiety disorder.
What, if anything,
did these disorders have to do
with her ability to control her
I don't believe she had
any control
over her actions at that time.
She was already experiencing
extreme distress.
Her husband psychologically
closed off
every avenue of escape to her
because he said to her
that it really didn't matter
if she left,
he would continue to be violent
toward her,
to rape her,
to abuse her.
This created, for her,
a kind of impasse.
A situation that made her crazy.
She became psychotic,
and, at that point in time,
she attacked the instrument
of her torture.
That is, her husband's penis.
Now, I'd like to go back
to the early morning hours
of June 23rd.
John and... Robbie
had gone out and...
I went to sleep around ten
then I wake up because I hear
the door slam.
Go to sleep.
- You're my wife.
- John, stop.
Stop, John!
St-stop! John, stop! Stop!
Please, John, I don't want to!
Please, John.
Ah! I-I can't
breathe, John!
I can't...
Ahhh! Ahhh! Ahhh!
Why do you keep doing this
to me?
Because I can.
I was not in my right
frame of mind
at that time.
After enduring years
of brutality,
my mind couldn't handle anymore.
My mind went blank.
I could barely walk,
could barely breathe.
Are you deaf?!
God forbid you make
a little effort.
Needles so big.
Howard: To rape a woman
is not just a violation
of the body,
it's a direct attack on
the emotional structure
that holds a woman together.
If you believe
that's what she felt
when she did that act,
then the verdict is not guilty.
Physical abuse,
sexual abuse,
forced abuse,
anal abuse -
she was falling apart.
She snapped.
This lady is ill.
Every doctor has told you that.
She has been stripped of
all dignity.
She needs a lot of help.
She needs your help.
By your verdict,
you can restore her dignity
so she can walk out
of this courtroom
with her head held up.
I know you'll do the right
because justice,
ladies and gentlemen,
is for all -
the weak as well as the strong.
Thank you.
We're into the home stretch now.
Now, just in case
things don't go our way
in there,
you'll be taken into custody
and the judge will set
a sentencing hearing.
Are you okay?
I've told my truth.
I'm... at peace with it.
I just had to make sure that
John can never...
ever do this to me
or any woman ever again.
Come here, I want you to see
You're not alone, Lorena.
A lot of people believe in you,
and not just here in Manassas,
but all over the world.
The courthouse gets piles of
support letters every day.
People are on your side, Lorena.
Howard: I've never seen
anything like it.
This is amazing.
Lorena! Lorena!
You did what you had to do
to protect yourself.
Don't ever forget that.
In the case of
Lorena Gallo Bobbitt
versus the State of Virginia,
the charge of malicious
how do you find?
We find the defendant not guilty
by reason of temporary insanity.
Is that good?
You're free.
In the beginning,
I will ask, "Why me?"
Now, the way I see it,
it happened to all of us -
to all women who were abused.
But I'm not in the fight
by myself.
I'm in it for all women
who have been victimized
or will be victimized.
To all of the survivors
of domestic violence,
silence is not an option.
Please know that we are here,
we believe you,
and we will never, ever stop
fighting for you.
I, Lorena Gallo,
hereby declare, on oath,
that I will support and defend
the Constitution
and the laws of the United
States of America
against all enemies,
foreign and domestic,
and that I take this obligation
without any mental reservation
or purpose of evasion,
so help me God.