Gypsy Rose Blanchard may be happily engaged, but her former love has yet to move on.
Four years after the murder of Gypsy’s mother Dee Dee Blanchard gripped the nation’s attention, revealing a twisted tale of Munchausen by proxy and matricide almost too shocking to believe, the killer is telling his side of the story—and he’s making it a love story.
In Oxygen’s new special Killer Couples: Gypsy Rose & Nick: A Love to Kill For, Nick Godejohn gives his first interview since being sentenced to life in prison and the murder once again making headlines thanks to Hulu’s hit series The Act, and he’s set to reveal intimate details about his relationship with Gypsy Rose and the brief time they spent together after planning and carrying out her mother’s death.
Though he’s set to spend the rest of his life behind bars and Gypsy has spoken out against him (and has since moved on and is engaged to her new boyfriend), Nick still called his former girlfriend his “soul mate” in a sneak peek at the Oxygen special, airing tonight.
Prior to Nick, the now 27-year-old Gypsy’s experience with boys was near non-existent, given her mother’s strict rules and careful watch over her life, enduring years of medical child abuse and being confined to a wheelchair.
But that didn’t mean she wasn’t interested in dating.
“She would show interest in different boys and try to ask me advice on how do you approach them, how to you kiss a boy,” Gypsy’s neighbor and close friend Aleah Woodmansee told ABC News, but said Dee Dee would immediately try to shut the girl talk down. “It was like, ‘My daughter was the mentality of a child, like you’re talking to her about teenage girl things.'”
In 2011, she attempted to run away to be with an older man she met at a sci-fi convention. Dee Dee eventually caught up with her, and according to Gypsy in the HBO documentary, told her, “If you ever try to do that again, I’m going to smash your fingers with a hammer.” She also destroyed her phone and computer, with Gypsy alleging she was also chained to her bed and Dee Dee put bells on the doors.
But Gypsy was still able to secretly access the computer, even setting up a private Facebook account using the name Emma Rose to send messages to Aleah.
“This is my personal account my mom is still overprotective so she don’t, know about this account,” Gypsy wrote in October 2014 to her neighbor.
Greene County Sheriff’s Office
Nick and Gypsy’s unusual love story began in a pretty usual way: online via a Christian dating app on October 9, 2012.
Obsessed with Disney fairy tale princesses—especially Rapunzel, “who is kept in this tower for all of her life…so that is all she knows,” Gypsy said in the HBO doc, an experience she related to, dreaming of being rescued by her own Prince Charming—Gypsy believed she had found her Prince Charming in Nick.
“im a little emberessed this is my first time on an online dateing site but i thought it might be nice to me new people and maybe find love too,” one of her earlier messages to Nick read.
Living in Wisconsin, Nick was also looking to connect with someone, and was “sort of similar” to Gypsy in that he functioned at the same level as a 15 or 16 year old and “did not really having a normal social interaction history,” according to former FBI agent Brad Garrett.
Arrested in 2013 for masturbating at a McDonald’s and having a concealed knife, Nick reportedly struggled with mental health issues. Per Oxygen, his father Bobby Godejohn said he was diagnosed with autism in elementary school.
From the start, their online relationship was intense, with Gypsy opening up about her medical condition early on.
“I need to tell you something. I’m no model…I have a medical condition..so I can’t walk, I have a chair I use…is that a issue?” Gypsy wrote in one message, with Nick responding, “why would that be a problem u are an angel in my eyes…it will never make any difference in how I see u from the inside out.”
Excited to finally have her own relationship stories to share, Gypsy excitedly confided in Aleah about her “romantic new beau.”
“She was talking about this new guy that she was now in love with and they had met on this Christian dating site and that they were already planning on their children after him,” Aleah told ABC News.
Gypsy also wrote about her relationship on her secret Facebook page, revealing how serious the new romance was when she posted, “is it wrong to start thinking about ur wedding before ur even engaged?”
Soon though, their online correspondences went from PG-rated fairy tale declarations of love to X-rated messages as Gypsy revealed Nick was allegedly into BDSM, something she later said she wasn’t comfortable with but went along with at the time.
“As [the relationship] progressed, things got weird,” Gypsy said in Mommy Dead and Dearest. After Nick said he had multiple personalities, Gypsy came up with various identities of her own to match his, donning different wigs and outfits as they role-played.
Still, Nick eventually visited Gypsy, with the couple coming up with a plan to introduce him to Dee Dee during a movie date, which ended in disaster after her mother found Nick’s behavior bizarre.
“Awful, oh my god. She got jealous because I was spending a little too much attention on him and she had ordered me to stay away from him,” Gypsy recalled in her interview with ABC News, with the mother and daughter going on to argue for a couple of weeks, which included Dee Dee “yelling, throwing things, calling me names, ‘b—h, slut, whore.'”
Eventually, Gypsy revealed the truth to Nick about everything—her health, her ability to walk and the abuse she was suffering at home.
“I told her, ‘You know I’d do anything to be with you,'” Nick explained in Gypsy Rose & Nick: A Live to Kill For. “I wanted to make sure her mom wasn’t going to harm her anymore. I made sure of that.”
The couple then hatched their plan, with Nick telling police during an interview, “Honestly…she asked me to” when they asked if Gypsy knew he was going to murder Dee Dee, though Gypsy later told ABC News, “I didn’t hate her…I wanted to escape her.”
That escape plan went down at the little pink house on June 9, 2015, with Nick arriving in Springfield to carry out the murder.
On the day of the murder, Gypsy texted Nick, “The ***** gonna go down tonight…just the gloves and knife?'” Nick responded, “…duct tape too…to muffle her.” Gypsy said she would “precut” the tape.
In a later interview, Gypsy claimed to be “terrified” and hid in the bathroom after letting Nick into the house to kill Dee Dee, who was asleep in her bedroom.
“I heard her scream once and there was more screaming, but not like the kind in a horror film,” Gypsy recalled, “A startled scream…she called out my name about three or four times, at that point I wanted to go help her so bad, but I was so afraid to get up. And then everything just went quiet.”
During his interview with police, Nick admitted, “I did actually stab her mom. I’ll admit it. Then she called up for Gypsy but Gypsy didn’t do anything.”
The couple then proceeded to have sex in Gypsy’s bedroom, which Nick claimed to be consensual but Gypsy later alleged Nick had raped her in the HBO documentary, saying he had tried to have sex with her mother’s corpse.
“I made a deal with him. I’d let him rape me and then he wouldn’t do that to my mom,” she said in Mommy Dead and Dearest.
After that, the couple began their journey back to Nick’s parents’ house in Wisconsin. Before leaving the house on the Corner of Hope Road and Volunteer Way, they sealed the murder weapon and over $4,000 they stole from Dee Dee in an envelope, mailing it to his house via USPS.
On their journey, they encountered a taxi driver, who would later her interactions with the couple to ABC News, saying Gypsy was sporting “an old-looking Cher wig” and a pretty big attitude.
“The girl looked 12, sounded five and have a 40-year-old attitude,” the driver recalled. “She was not afraid to tell me off. I just knew there was something wrong.”
In home video filmed by Gypsy that was later released, the couple is seen lying in a hotel bed together the day after the murder, with a laughing Gypsy saying, “He’s eating a brownie, but later he will be eating me.”
The couple eventually made their way to his parents’ home, with Nick reflecting on their time together in a sneak peek from the Oxygen special.
“Those five days when I was with her, physically with her, that was probably the best days of my life,” he said. “That was man, probably the best days of my life, that’s the only way I can describe it. I enjoyed every second of it. Those five days were the most intense and magical and awe-inspiring days I’ve ever had.”
According to Nick’s step-father, Gypsy and Nick “acted like two normal people” ahead of a SWAT team descending on the house. “That’s what’s really freaky,” he said in Mommy Dead and Dearest. “How can you do that?”
The police tracked down the couple by tracing the IP address of the graphic messages Nick and Gypsy posted on the joint Facebook on June 14, 2015, account she shared with Dee Dee in an attempt to have someone discover her mother’s body.
“That B–ch is dead!” one message read, with a second one reading, “I SLASHED THAT FAT PIG AND RAPED HER SWEET INNOCENT DAUGHTER. HER SCREAM WAS SO LOUD LOL.”
In footage from her first police interrogation, Gypsy feigned shock and despair over her mother’s death. “Wait, go back…no. no. I don’t know what happened with my mom,” she told the police officer, who doesn’t seem to be buying the act. “Why don’t you just tell me? No…sir, I, I didn’t do anything!…I don’t know what happened with my mom!”
Of her beau, Gypsy told the officer, “I know that he loves me and he would do anything for me and to be with me.”
“Somehow I knew just deep within my heart, some way she and I would end up being together in the end,” Nick said in a sneak peek for the Oxygen special of carrying out the plan. “There was no other option, we had to.”
While Gypsy denied any involvement in her initial police interview, Nick eventually confessed to the police that he murdered Dee Dee, as the world continued to watch in shock as more details emerged about the case, especially the revelation that Gypsy could walk and the extent of Dee Dee’s financial fraud schemes and lies.
Nick was sentenced to life in prison in February 2019 for first degree murder, even with Gypsy serving as the main witness for the defense, taking blame for planning Dee Dee’s violent death. Prior to his sentencing, Gypsy was sentenced to 10 years behind bars after pleading guilty to second-degree murder.
“She was basically the mastermind behind it all. I was basically a hired hit man in its own weird sense,” Nick told ABC News in a video conference before his trial. “The reason why I did do this because I was for some so deeply in love with Gypsy at the time. I do still love her.”
And speaking with Oxygen for the special, it’s clear Nick still has deep feelings for his former girlfriend.
“From the beginning I just knew we were soul mates,” he said, revealing what he envisioned for their future before their arrests. “I was going to get a job and start looking for an apartment after a little ways down the road I’d probably end up marrying her, having children with her. That’s something I never had with someone else, I never ever had it. To this day, she’s the only one that I’ve had that with.”
Still, he acknowledged, “I did feel that she was not taking responsibility for her actions, but at the same time, due to the way I know she was raised, I can’t blame her.”
For Gypsy, she’s made it clear that she no longer has any romantic feelings for Nick in interviews, eventually learning the fairy tale love stories she grew up obsessed with are just that: fairy tales.
“In the Disney movies, everything’s a fantasy, it’s a fairy tale. And life is not a fairy tale. I learned all that the hard way,” she said.
“Now, I don’t hate him. I feel sorry for him,” Gypsy said of Nick. “He was very much like my mother in certain ways, both of them were very controlling, and I feel like I was trained my whole life to do as I was told.”
In the ABC News special, she admitted, “If you would’ve asked me that two years ago, I would’ve said I’m still in love with him.”
But Gypsy has fully moved on, finding love while behind bars, where she will be until at least 2024, when she is eligible for parole at 32 years old.
In April 2019, Fancy Macelli, a family friend who also serves as a public spokesperson for the Blanchard family, confirmed to E! News that Gypsy got engaged earlier this year, though they had decided not to reveal her fiancé’s identity at the time.
“It’s something that she’s been keeping under wraps for a little bit,” Macelli shared with us. “It’s very exciting for her, she’s very excited.”
But E! News exclusively revealed Gypsy’s beau’s identity earlier this week, along with the first photo of her fiancé, Ken.
The photos, which were taken in jail several months ago, also feature her father, Rod Blanchard, and stepmother, Kristy, who met Ken in-person for the first time on the day the picture was taken.
“Gypsy’s family and her future husband Ken met in person for the first time in March,” Macelli revealed to E! News. “Gypsy and Ken are making plans to build a life together once she is released.”
Unlike Nick’s first meeting with Gypsy’s mom, Ken’s first in-person visit with the family went well, with Macelli sharing, “Everyone had fun getting to know each other over a pot of Gypsy’s father’s famous gumbo…Kristy is such a supportive, kind and loving mom to Gypsy.”
Macelli had previously updated us on how Gypsy was doing in prison, saying, “She’s doing really, really well and I think there has been a maturity that has happened because now she’s able to have normal, normal-ish relationships with people that are not controlled by one person.”
As for how Gypsy and Ken’s romance started, Macelli revealed it began in an old-fashioned way: They were pen pals, with her mystery boyfriend reaching out to her first after watching Mommy Dead and Dearest, wanting to show his support for Gypsy.
“He wanted to just write and tell her you know support her, be kind to her and this and that turned into a relationship through email and this pen pal situation and then he went and visited her and really that was the beginning of this friendship which turned into something more than a friendship,” she revealed. “I’m not sure quite the timeline of when it became more than a friendship. I think she’s keeping some things to herself so that she feels that she can control some stuff in her life for once.”
Compared to the dramatic unfolding of her relationship with Nick, her romance with her fiancé was “very practical,” and their decision to get engaged came after a casual conversation, according to Macelli.
“I don’t think there was any major pomp-and-circumstance,” she said.
Even the acquiring of her current engagement ring was practical.
“Another inmate was getting divorced and gave her that so like now for her to just have,” Macelli said of her temporary band, “so that she could feel good about it and then they’ll go together and pick out rings, obviously later, at a time when she’s out and they could do that and have their own intimate moment.”
When Gypsy does get released from prison, Macelli said she’s looking forward to living “a normal” life with her beau, along with planning to help others who have been affected by Munchausen by proxy.
“Gypsy has talked about being an advocate for children who are experiencing abuse, and possibly for people going through Munchausen by proxy,” the family friend said. “She feels like it’s something that people don’t even know what it is. Gypsy is very adamant about wanting to come out and do something good for the community in that way. But other than that, she just wants to live a normal existence with her fiancé and have a family and be happy.”
Like the Disney princesses she grew up idolizing, it looks like Gypsy just might get her happily ever after.
To hear more from Nick including his perception of what pushed him and Gypsy Rose to the edge in murdering Dee Dee, watch Gypsy Rose & Nick: A Love To Kill For premiering Saturday, July 13 at 7 p.m. ET.
(E! and Oxygen are part of the NBCUniversal family)