Local News

March shows continued need for domestic violence awareness

Posted July 25, 2012
Updated September 11, 2012

— About 50 people showed up in downtown Raleigh Wednesday afternoon for a silent march against domestic violence – a turnout that some say indicates the need to keep the issue in the public eye.

The march, organized by the Wake County Domestic Violence Task Force, was in response to three recent homicides in Wake County that authorities have determined were the result of domestic violence.

Sherry Howard, 50, died in May, Nancy Margarita Pedraza, 23, died in June, and Marisol Mendoza Rojas died this month.

Last year in Wake County, four deaths were attributed to domestic violence, according to the North Carolina Department of Justice.

"It saddens me to see the response to the march," said Rene Raeford. "There are not a lot of people here today, and in 2012, I can't believe we're still keeping this in the closet."

Raeford's sister, Yvette Raeford, was a teacher who was killed in a 2005 murder-suicide at the hands of her ex-boyfriend.

"We were very close, and it's devastating, still today," Raeford said. "It hurts me. I guess I would feel a lot better if we were more ahead with what's happening with domestic violence and trying to make a better change."

Cynthia Foxx lost her daughter, Tiana Williams, in July 2002, after Williams' fiancé fatally shot her.

The 21-year-old had just graduated from Meredith College in Raleigh and was getting ready for medical school at East Carolina University on a full scholarship.

Silent march brings awareness to domestic violence Silent march brings awareness to domestic violence

"She did not anticipate being murdered by someone who professed to love and care for her," Foxx said. "Her death has changed our entire family and community. Needless to say, we refuse to remain silent."

According to the state justice department, domestic violence deaths in the state have dropped since 2008, when 137 people died, but that number has fluctuated in recent years. In 2009, 99 people died; 107 died in 2010; and 106 died last year.

North Carolina is currently ranked fourth in the nation in homicides committed by men against women, says Leigh Duque, executive director of InterAct of Wake County, a nonprofit that promotes awareness and offers counseling, education, support and shelter for victims of domestic violence.

"It is absolutely critical for us to create awareness about the issue of domestic violence," she said. "This is everybody's business. This isn't someone else's problem."

Duque says she hopes that with marches, like Wednesday's, her group and others are creating greater awareness and that people will reach out for help more than ever.

"Domestic violence is often called the silent crime, and it is just critical that we remain silent no more about this issue," she said. "The march today was silent in honor of and in memory of (the latest victims). However, our call to action at the end of the march was to go forth and be silent no more."

38 Comments

This story is closed for comments. Comments on WRAL.com news stories are accepted and moderated between the hours of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Oldest First
View all
  • dollibug Jul 25, 7:37 p.m.

    ****And if there is a child involved, there HAS to be some kind of contact.

    Actually when there is a DVPO issued....there is supposed to be NO CONTACT....as I think I stated earlier....the welfare of the children should be settled first BEFORE the DVPO is even issued....if you have ever been in court....there is very limited time to actually say anything at all when it is your time in front of the judge....(it is kind of like the head em up, move em out)....

  • storchheim Jul 25, 6:42 p.m.

    Uh, we ARE aware. It's NOT in the closet. Women choose and stay with abusive men. Instead of browbeating and scolding the general public, suppose you ask them WHY they do it.

    Resources are scarce. I will most certainly turn my back on someone who refuses to help herself.

  • ndadszucs Jul 25, 5:24 p.m.

    "I am also assuming that you, having a DVPO, decide you want to go on a vacation..." -dollibug

    First off, stop using the word "you", it does nothing for rational discourse to personalize the respondent as if they were your son's ex. Secondly, it sounds like they deserve each other.

  • Uhavenoclu Jul 25, 5:19 p.m.

    This ain't facebook or the camp put junk ...People are aware of it so just the being aware and knowing it exists won't change a thing.

    Don't forget mental anx emotional in the home or by family has a longer affect on a child or relative then physical abuse.

  • dollibug Jul 25, 4:52 p.m.

    ++++ you are stating that if my (convicted of domestic violence) ex-boyfriend violates his DVOP, comes to my home and breaks the door down to get one last beating in; that I should be arrested, too?

    I am assuming that you DID NOT COMMUNICATE with your ex and once he responded to you....that you then turned around and called the law to have him arrested....I am also assuming that you, having a DVPO, decide you want to go on a vacation with the ex and proceed to do so....and when you get back, you decide to report false accusations about something that did not take place and again have your ex arrested for something that he did not do....IF you have a DVPO against your ex and decide you want to call or text him and harrass him over something or perhaps nothing....YOU have a right to do so....and he can do NOTHING about this....oh, by the way, it pays to have *inside connections* to know exactly how one can *abuse the system and get by with doing so*....it is a *game* for some people.

  • Barely Jul 25, 4:41 p.m.

    I am totally sympathetic to their cause. However, the lunchtime interview I saw was a bunch of shaming on the public. They were angry more people didn't show up... on a Wednesday... in the middle of the day... without a lot of promotion. This doesn't represent a lack of awareness.

  • ndadszucs Jul 25, 4:30 p.m.

    dollibug, apparently what you know about the judicial system regarding domestic violence is from this one particular case which you speak of. To take your experiences regarding this one case dear to you out of the ~100 a week Wake County Courts deals with and then use such a blanket statement as to suggest that if one violent partner violates the DVOP levied against them that both partners be arrested is a purely emotional reaction that is lacking reason, logic and foresight. Because of what your son, obviously, has dealt with, you are stating that if my (convicted of domestic violence) ex-boyfriend violates his DVOP, comes to my home and breaks the door down to get one last beating in; that I should be arrested, too? You terrify me. And I am relieved that my life is in the hands the RPD and the NC/Wake County Court system; as opposed to in yours.

  • dollibug Jul 25, 4:11 p.m.

    ++++"and anytime either of them abuse the order....they are BOTH ARRESTED" -dollibug

    This statement and the vehemence behind these words (and subsequent words) are truly terrifying.

    Trust me when I tell you.....I have seen and heard more about the *judicial system* and just how it works/ or NOT....than I ever cared to.....when a person is indicted, not once, but TWICE for something that there is NO PROOF of even occurring....there are BIG PROBLEMS....oh, by the way....the last 2 criminals charges were finally *dismissed on July 5, 2012*....(which were supposed to be dropped in May)....

  • DontVote4LiarsCheatsOrThieves Jul 25, 3:53 p.m.

    dollibug - "This is exactly why the DOMESTIC VIOLENCE PROTECTION ORDER SHOULD PROTECT both parties and both parties should be held accountable and responsible....no contact between either party....instead of allowing one party to continue to contact, threaten, abuse, intimidate or pressure the other party....and anytime either of them abuse the order....they are BOTH ARRESTED....what is good for the goose should be good for the glander as well...period."

    Would be so if both parties took out POs against one another.

    In the case you shared, why HASN'T the man done so? Why hasn't he processed a case to restore his Father's Rights?

  • DontVote4LiarsCheatsOrThieves Jul 25, 3:51 p.m.

    dollibug - "THE PROTECTION ORDER SHOULD PROTECT BOTH PARTIES....equally....NO CONTACT SHOULD BE NO CONTACT FOR BOTH....and NOT allow either to contact the other....(it does NOT WORK THIS WAY NOW)...."

    That depends upon how the Order is worded.

    And if there is a child involved, there HAS to be some kind of contact.

More...