Local Efforts Being Made To Combat Domestic Violence
Posted August 13, 2003 1:17 a.m. EDT
RALEIGH, N.C. — Despite increased awareness and tougher laws, domestic violence remains a serious problem.
Tuesday, two different efforts were aimed at doing something about it.
Raleigh police and the Wake County Sheriff's Office sponsored a conference. The keynote speaker was Mark Wynn, one of the nation's leading educators on domestic violence.
Wynn recently counseled soldiers at Fort Bragg. The goal: Officers need to work together to combat this crime.
Late Tuesday afternoon, state legislators got together to figure out what they can do to make a difference. They announced a new plan of attack.
Lawmakers have been frustrated that domestic violence laws do not go far enough to keep victims of abuse out of harm's way. In a call for action, the co-speakers of the House announced a select committee to recommend ways to give domestic violence a higher priority.
Domestic violence made headlines last September when
Roberto Campos put a gun to his ex-girlfriend's head in Raleigh and ordered her to drive.
Police and the Highway Patrol pursued the car into Virginia, where the chase ended with Campos killing Lourdes Guzman and then himself.
Women like Dena Bailey of Wilson often turn to the justice system for help from domestic violence. She got a court order, but police say her estranged husband, Ricky Bailey, violated it by hiding in the trunk of her car.
He is charged with kidnapping and murdering her.
Even women you think might be safe are not. In Person County,
police say state trooper Bobby Regan shot his estranged wife, Daneille.
"I saw the blinds move, felt the pain in my chest and knew I was shot," Danielle said.
Legislators passed a law that allows judges to seize guns in domestic violence situations. Additional protective measures will be proposed to a newly formed special select House committee.
Raleigh Democrat Deborah Ross, who is on the panel, wants to focus on improving protection for victims.
"Of course, there is more work to do," Ross said. "But what we also need to do is look at how to support people who are in that kind of situation and find resources for them and their children."
One of the biggest needs for helping domestic violence causes is money. Speakers Black and Morgan held a fundraiser Tuesday to raise money for two organizations in their home district that support victims of domestic violence.