A Missouri jury found Nicholas Godejohn guilty of first-degree murder in the slaying of Dee Dee Blanchard, who'd been abusing his girlfriend, Gypsy Rose
Gypsy Rose Blanchard Credit: Courtesy ABC News
Credit: Courtesy ABC News

The ex-boyfriend of Gypsy Rose Blanchard, the Missouri woman who orchestrated the murder of her mother after being forced to portray herself as terminally ill for nearly her entire life, has been found guilty for his part in the killing, according to multiple news outlets.

Nicholas Godejohn was found guilty on Friday of first-degree murder in the June 2015 stabbing death of Gypsy’s mother, Dee Dee Blanchard, local TV station stations KY3 and KSPR and the Springfield News-Leaderreport.

He has also been found guilty of armed criminal action.

While no one disputed whether Godejohn killed Dee Dee, his attorneys had argued that he was manipulated by Gypsy to kill her mom and should have his charges reduced to second-degree murder, according to the News-Leader.

The verdict reportedly means Godejohn is automatically sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole or probation.

On Thursday, Gypsy testified that she came up with the plan to kill her mother because it was the only way she could escape her life of abuse, the News-Leader reports.

In 2016, Gypsy pleaded guilty to second-degree murder. She is serving 10 years in prison.

She told the court how, two weeks before her mother’s murder, she changed her mind because she “started having doubt [and] second thoughts.” But after the pair got into an argument days later, Gypsy decided Dee Dee had to die and told Godejohn, her then-boyfriend, to travel from Wisconsin to Missouri to kill her, according to the News-Leader.

When asked who talked who into killing Dee Dee, Gypsy responded in court, “I did, I talked him into it,” the paper reports.

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Gypsy Rose Blanchard (left) and mom Dee Dee Blanchard
| Credit: Courtesy HBO

Text messages shared in court on Tuesday showed the tumultuous relationship the pair had leading up to Dee Dee’s death, according to the News-Leader.

Using pet names like “dear,” “hun,” “daddy” and “daughter,” Godejohn and Gypsy discussed having a child together and starting a new life, according to the paper.

Gypsy told the court she would call herself Godejohn’s “slave” and refer to him as her “master,” according to the News-Leader.

In one conversation, Godejohn reportedly referenced suicide, though it’s unclear whether he was serious.

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Experts have said that Gypsy was the victim of Munchausen by proxy, a rare form of abuse in which a guardian — in this case Gypsy’s mother — exaggerates or induces illness in a child for attention and sympathy.

Dee Dee began to abuse Gypsy soon after she was born up until Dee Dee’s death, when Gypsy was 23.

Before her murder, Dee Dee had convinced her friends, family and community that her daughter was a terminally ill teenager with the mind of a 7-year-old who suffered from muscular dystrophy, leukemia and other ailments.

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Nicholas Godejohn
| Credit: Waukehsa county Sheriff's Department
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Gypsy Rose Blanchard in the hospital
| Credit: Courtesy HBO

Gypsy testified Thursday that she believed her mom and thought she was suffering from cancer and terminal illnesses. Dee Dee beat and punched her behind closed doors.

“I feared her more than I feared anyone else,” Gypsy told the court, according to the News-Leader.

Authorities only learned the extent of the abuse after Dee Dee was found dead in her home in Springfield, where she relocated with Gypsy from Louisiana after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans.

Days later, Gypsy and Godejohn were arrested. Investigators determined that she had enlisted him to help plot and carry out her mother’s murder.

On Friday morning, before closing statements, members of the jury heard from a doctor who testified that Godejohn has autism spectrum disorder, according to KY3.

Jurors made their decision less than two hours later. Godejohn’s attorney could not immediately be reached for comment by PEOPLE.