The Nature Of The Beast
Winner of Grand Jury Prize Bettina Russell Festival
Winner of Triple AAA Commendation from the National Society for Visual Anthropology
Bonnie Jean Foreshaw was the first person to shoot and kill a pregnant woman in the State of Connecticut. She was sentenced to 45 years in prison without the possibility of parole, the longest sentence given to a woman in state history. She had acted in self-defense.
As a child and throughout three marriages Bonnie was subjected to years of abuse. She began carrying a handgun for protection after her third husband stalked and threatened her. One night, while out at a club, Bonnie was threatened, followed outside, and chased through the street. Fearing for her safety Bonnie drew her gun. Bonnie’s would-be-attacker, Hector Freeman, testified that he pulled a pregnant woman, Joyce Amos, in front of him, as a shield, before Bonnie accidentally shot and killed her. While both her assailant and victim were complete strangers, Bonnie was nevertheless found guilty of premeditated murder.
Ondi Timoner directed this account of the life and case of Bonnie Jean Foreshaw.
The Nature of the Beast examines how battered women are treated by the American justice system and tells the story of a woman convicted of murder, yet praised as a hero, leader, and mother to other inmates.
Bonnie has been in prison since 1986. The earliest she can be released is 2018.