Part 6: Witness to Violence against Nicole aka Capricorn: The Life and Death of Nicole Cearo
Violence against women isn’t simply a criminal justice issue, it is a public health epidemic. In particular, Black women suffer intimate partner violence about 22 times the rate of women of other races, and 35% higher than white women.
The number one killer of Black women between 15 to 34 is homicide at the hands of a former or current intimate partner. Victims of pregnancy-related homicide were more likely undereducated, young, and black.
Police classified Nicole Cearo, as an endangered person when she disappeared; she was pregnant. When she first went missing those closest to her, including her mother, accused Nicole’s boyfriend, Roosevelt Montgomery Jr as responsible.
We contacted Roosevelt Montgomery Jr numerous times about this story. He has declined to comment. He has not been arrested or charged in this case.
According to police reports, Mr. Montgomery allegedly pointed investigators to someone else; Timothy White Sr. Mr. White had dated Nicole on and off, and it had caused violent altercations between the two men, who also stood on opposite gang lines. Rivals in hoods, crews, and now a young woman was in the scenario.
This isn’t simply relationship drama for the sake of storytelling. A woman breaking up with a member of one gang to date a man from a rival gang is akin to a slap in the face. Not only is it perceived as disrespectful by an overwhelmingly misogynistic culture controlled predominantly by men, it can and often is perceived as a slight to one’s honor, and manhood. In the end, it is women who are left most vulnerable to the blowback, and the last to see it coming.
In this case, Mr. White did not kill Nicole or dispose of her body. She was last seen in March 2009. Mr. White was arrested on a criminal drug case in January of the same year. The last time he saw Nicole, she visited him in King County Jail before he was transferred to serve his sentence.
Mr. White knew Nicole by her nickname, Capricorn. He also knew Roosevelt Montgomery, by the name Baby Rat. His last memories off seeing Nicole alive are vivid and disturbing.
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