At 16 years of age Chrystul Kizer was sexually assaulted by a man who had been released from jail despite him being suspected of human trafficking and child pornography.
The federal law dictates that any child under the age of 18 who has been bought or sold for sex, is a sex trafficking victim, regardless of circumstances. So where was this so called law when it came to the protection of 17 year old Chrystul Kizer?
“At 17 Chrystul Kizer faced murder charges against her abuser, with her bail being set at 1 Million Dollars"
At just 16 years old, Chrystul met a 33 year old man called Randy Volar via the internet, a man who was more than twice her age. The relationship got off to a lovely start with Randal buying Chrystul expensive gifts and showering her with money.
This soon turns sour when Volar began sexually abusing Crystal multiple times and filmed it.
She wasn't the only one - In February 2018, Joe was arrested and charged with child enticement, using a computer to facilitate a child sex crimes and second degree assault of a child. Volar was released on bail and remained free for three months even after the police had discovered evidence that he was abusing a dozen underage girls from African American heritage.
He remained on bail until June when Chrystul, then 17, went to his home and shot him in the head. Twice. Chrystul lit his body on fire and fled the scene in his car after taking a selfie and posting it on her Facebook a few days later captioned - "My Mug Shot".
Under federal law, all children who are bought or sold for sex are trafficking victims regardless of the circumstances. Thirty states and the District have stopped charging these children with prostitution. Most states also have a law that backs up sex trafficking victims and gives them an "Affirmative Defence" if they can prove at trial that they committed a crime because they were being trafficked and abused.
Chrystuls case was heard in Wisconsin, United States, where these laws apply but her defence was crippled as the Affirmative Defence Law has never been applied to a homocide or any other violent crime.
Chrystul's mother "Taylor" gave birth to her at the age of 16 years old and used to work long hours in fast food joints to support herself and Crystul. As a child Chrystul enjoyed watching cartoons, drawing and playing musical instruments. When she reached junior high, she gained a place Grans Performing Arts Academy choosing Orchestra as her specialty. Taylor couldn't afford to pay for Chrystuls violin - by this time, she had 3 more children and a boyfriend to support. Instead, Taylor made a down payment on Chrystul's instrument and paid in instalments.
Chrystal's childhood began on a downward spiral as her mothers boyfriend became more and more violent towards Taylor. She recalls having to protect her bothers in the other room whilst hearing her mother being beaten until she was signalled to either call the police or come out because it was safe.
At the end of 2015, Taylor fled with her children and moved from Indiana to Milwaukee to stay at a Salvation Army emergency lodge for a few months until they found a stable place to live. Taylor had to return to work in order to provide a stable income for her family and whilst she was away working, Chrystul formed a relationship with a boy who was 3 years older than her, named Nelson.
It wasn't long before Nelson began hitting Chrystul. Once, a witness saw Nelson holding her in a headlock as he strikes her head over 10 times with a stick whilst dragging her through the parking lot. Nelson pleaded guilty to charges of battery and Chrystul decided she was going to stay with him.
In fall 2016, she met someone who told her she deserved better. That someone was 33 year old Randall Volar.
Crystal confessed that she needed money for school supplies and snacks so a friend showed her about a website called Backpage.com where she could post advertisements of herself for money. On this website is where Volar found her and responded to her post.
Shortly after, Volar began to see Chrystul nearly every other week and began gifting her with food, dates, jewellery, a phone and let her drive his cars. Crystal says she knew what he expected in return but she didn't think it was wrong as he was a grown up and she wasn't so she just listened. Chrystul speaks of their relationship as if they were friends, she clearly stated in an interview held with Washington Post that "He was the only friend I had".
Volar was aware of Chrystuls real age as she describes a time when he invited her to celebrate her 17th birthday at his house. He gifted her with cupcakes and a new drug called "Acid" which she says made her feel weird. A few weeks after her birthday, she was arrested for fleeing an officer and her bail bond was set at 400 Dollars, which Volar paid.
After this incident, Chrystal tried to part ways with Volar as he started to apply pressure on her sexual favours and she decided she didn't want to do it no more. When she made this decision, he began to threaten Chrystul saying he was going to kill her.
The authorities asked her why she didn't report this and her reply was simple. They didn't help my mum.
Crystal says she didn't know about the other girls that Volar was pimping and abusing and she didn't know that he was filming her. It was believed by her Lawyer once he reviewed all the evidence against Volar, that he was heavily involved in sex trafficking and his activities went far beyond buying sex from minors .
Volar used cryptocurrency and anonymous browsers to access the dark web - tactics and tools distributors of child pornography often use. In the videos, Volar described himself as an "escort trainer". After Volar was killed, homicide detectives quickly learned more about his activities.
On the day of his death, police received a call from TCF Bank, where most of Volar’s money — $800,000 in assets — was housed. Prosecutors would later say that Volar’s funds came from legal trading in cryptocurrency. The bank, police reports show, suspected something else was going on. A bank official called the police to flag that between November 2017 and May 2018, Volar had almost $1.5 million in transfers — in a pattern of activity the bank associated with human trafficking.
In May 2018, Chrystul’s boyfriend started to grow suspicious. Nelson told Chrystul, and later the police, that he thought someone might be following her. He bought her a .380 pistol and taught her to shoot it in his backyard.
On June 4, the day she killed Volar, she appeared in Milwaukee court to plead guilty to the fleeing charge she had picked up nearly a year earlier. Nelson went with her, and by the afternoon, they were fighting again. Chrystul was worried Nelson would hit her again, so she texted Volar to ask whether she could come over.
At 8:42 p.m., an Uber picked her up. The pistol, she said, was in her purse.
“I had went into the house. … He had ordered some pizza. We were smoking, and he asked me if I wanted to drink any liquor. And then he had gave me this drug. I don’t know what it’s called. And after that, we started to watch movies. … And then, the drug, it made me feel weird or whatever.”
She said Volar came to sit next to her. “He started to touch my leg and then like I had jumped and tell him that I didn’t want to do that.”
“I just thought that I didn’t want to do that stuff anymore because I was trying to change,” she said.
Volar, Chrystul recalled, told her what she owed him.
Chrystul said she tried to get up and get away from him but she tripped and fell on the floor, then he climbed onto of her. She made attempts to wiggle out of the hold like she did previously when Nelson had hold of her.
She doesn’t remember going to get the pistol. She does remember the sound it made and just like that her destiny was inevitable and her life changed from bad to worse.
Who was the real victim?
To Chrystul, the answer is clear.
“Both of us,” she said. “Because of the stuff that he was doing to me. And, that he should have never died.”
Chrystul did not have access to the affirmative defense law for trafficking victims. In the Juges opinion, neither would other trafficking victims charged with violent crimes and she is now serving life in prison.
Taylor, Chrystul's mother, was sent evidence from her case and some old belongings. In the box she came across notes that her daughter had made of her future goals (pictured above) and child pornography images of her daughter. She witnessed images of girls as young as 12 years old who hadn't even hit their teens yet.
Even though Chrystul is in prison, she is still being contacted by predators and is currently speaking with a 29 year old white male who read about her case and wrote to her from another prison. Their communication has become so frequent that she calls him her boyfriend. Despite knowing he serving time for child enticement that he pleaded guilty to in 2011, he convinced her it was all a misunderstanding and upon his release, they will get married.
To read more on Chrystul's case follow link below