Everyday Victim Blaming

challenging institutional disbelief around domestic & sexual violence and abuse

Press make it clear women remain possessions of men – even in death.

Helen Nicoll, 53, was found dead over the weekend from a gunshot. Police are investigating and have arrested a 53 year old man. At this moment, no further details have been released officially.

The media, however, have felt it necessary to refer to Nicoll as the possession of her husband.:

Independent: Wife of Harley Street dentist found dead in Cambridgeshire home

Telegraph: Murder investigation launched after wife of Harley Street dentist found dead

Daily Mail: Murder probe launched into shock death of top Harley Street dentist's wife after villagers heard 'incredibly loud bang' at their £1.5million home

Mirror: Murder probe launched into shock death of top Harley Street dentist's wife after villagers heard 'incredibly loud bang' at their £1.5million home

International Business Times: Man arrested on suspicion of murder after wife of Harley Street dentist is found dead

Sunday Times: Suspect bailed in killing of top dentist’s wife

Helen Nicoll was also a dentist - she was a co-partner in the private Cambridge dental practise with her husband. She was also a mother of 3 children and had a life of her own. None of these matter though - Nicoll's death is only considered newsworthy because her husband also had a dental practice in Harley Street.

Nicoll matters to the media only as a possession of a wealthy medical professional. She is not a person in her own right: just an object whose value exists only in relation to a man.

The Telegraph and Daily Mail also felt it necessary to note the cost of Nicoll's home, as well as the number of bedrooms. Apparently, murder victims only count if they live in million pound homes.

This is misogyny and demonstrates just how appallingly the media cover the murder of women. It is irresponsible and crass journalism that makes it very clear why the press cannot be allowed to regulate themselves.

Helen Nicoll's death matters because she was human too.

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