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N.C. Domestic Violence Task Force Prepares Proposals for Governor

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FAYETTEVILLE — Police officers respond to more domestic violence calls than any others. Those situations are not only dangerous for the victims, but also for the officers. The state admits improvements are necessary.

The Governor's Domestic Violence Task Force will meet one more time before it officially submits a list of proposals to Governor Hunt. One of the group's key concerns is the need for more training for police officers.

Police Specialist Willie Cain teaches police officers how to handle domestic violence calls.

He says most of their training focuses on victim safety, arrest procedures and legal issues. He is all for a recommendation to expand officer training.

"For an officer who is not really trained in domestic violence, he may go to the scene and arrest the wrong person," explained Cain.

That happens more than you may think. So, members of the Governor's Domestic Violence Task Force would like law enforcement officers to be more assertive.

They want the officers to be trained so they can identify the primary aggressor.

"Both persons may have bruises. One may be because of self-defense, and that's the kind of training we are talking about...being able to say that was the aggressor and this was the person trying to defend themselves," said task force member Crystal Black.

The task force is also concerned that police officers statewide do not have the same training.

They say to really make an aggressive push on fighting domestic violence, all officers need to be trained equally so response to victims will be consistent.

Some of the other ideas the task force is considering recommending are:
  • Education in schools about domestic violence
  • Providing services for domestic violence in all 100 counties
  • The creation of a statewide commission on domestic violence
  • Once the recommendations are turned in to the governor, he will choose which ones he supports.


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