The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Local News

October 9, 2012

Cable TV show to focus on Nibbe murder case



“Why not shed a little bit of light on who my brother was? He was a great person and we want to provide insight on who he was as a man,” she said. “The story is about Jen, it’s not about Jim, and that’s unfortunate. I don’t have a goal in helping them more than to shed some light on who Jim was.”

No one is being paid to participate, Johnson said. The production company is paying the family for some photographs, but that money will be used for the annual James Nibbe Outstanding Character Award scholarship.

Before Jennifer Nibbe reached a plea deal that sent her to prison until at least 2027, her attorneys filed motions suggesting she was the victim of abuse that pushed her to the point of murder. Those filings could have been what drew attention to her case by the producers of “Snapped.”

The show’s description says the episodes try to answer whether the women accused of murder really committed the crime and, if they did, explain why they did it.

“Whether the motivation was revenge against a cheating husband, the promise of a hefty insurance payoff, or putting an end to years of abuse, the reasons are as varied as the women themselves,” the show description says.

Dan Gilman, Jennifer Nibbe’s father, said he also has been contacted by a producer. He said it’s his impression that the show is going to investigate things about James Nibbe that didn’t come to light through local media coverage of the case. Gilman said he believes there’s more to uncover than a coroner’s report that said James Nibbe tested positive for HIV and a collection of pornography that investigators didn’t see as evidence.

“They’re going to ask, ‘How could this person, who seemingly had it together, all of a sudden snap and kill someone?” he said. “What they wanted to find out is what happened.

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