Leah Gayle Shipman, 42, married the now-19-year-old.
Leah Gayle Shipman, 42, wed Johnnie Ray Ison, now 19, in January of 2011 – two years after her arrest for having sex with the then 15-year-old student at a Wilmington high school, The Wilmington Star-News reports.
As a result, officials cannot now compel Ison to render evidence against Shipman – and all statements he previously made to police concerning their affair are no longer admissible at trial.
Under North Carolina law, a defendant’s spouse cannot be compelled to testify against the defendant in criminal cases or grand jury proceedings…
Shipman, of Wilmington, was reportedly married at the time of her trysts with Ison, and married the 19-year-old six days after divorcing her husband of 19 years.
At the time of the betrothal, Simpson was facing 15 years for statutory rape and taking indecent liberties with a child, in connection with her previous sexual relationship with Ison.