Monday, December 5, 2011

Lighting of the domestic violence holiday tree

Posted By on Mon, Dec 5, 2011 at 12:16 PM

This year in North Carolina, 62 people have been killed by the hands of someone who was supposed to have loved them.

For the seventh year, the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department, Domestic Violence Advocacy Council,
Domestic Violence Speakers Bureau and Mecklenburg County’s Community Support Services Women’s Commission will light the domestic violence memorial tree at CMPD headquarters.

The event begins today at 5:30 p.m. The tree will be on display through the end of the year.

We hope that any friends and family who have lost a loved one to domestic violence will make this memorial their own. Bring pictures, poems, news articles, flowers, etc. and place them near the tree for all to appreciate.

The holiday period, according to Kim Wells, executive director of the Corporate Alliance to End Partner Violence, is a time when you see family members you may not see on a regular basis and you could see signs of abuse.

She writes this on her blog:

Here is the big difficult question: "What do you say to someone if you are concerned that they may be in an abusive relationship?"
Here is one pretty good way that I've found to talk with someone — granted this is my style and everyone has a different style, but it goes something like this:

"You know I really care a lot about you. I've noticed you haven't been yourself lately, and that (and you would fill in here the other things you've noticed — for example, the person seems afraid of their boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife, has unexplained injuries, seems isolated, etc.). I would rather be wrong or have you mad at me for asking than ever have anything bad happen to you so I just have to check in with you and ask — are you safe in your relationship?"

Because really, if you think about it, that is the point, isn't it? You WOULD rather be embarrassed or feel uncomfortable asking, or be wrong rather than have something bad happen to a friend of yours and not say something.

These are the three domestic violence-related homicides in Mecklenburg County this year:

Date : March 22, 2011
Victim Name: Andrew Alan Nichols, 24
Alleged Perpetrator Name: Traci Bell, 26
Relationship: Co-habitants
Weapon: Firearm
Town: Charlotte

Date: July 26, 2011
Victim Name: Ebony Patrice Taylor
Alleged Perpetrator Name: Gregory Scott Parker, 52
Relationship: Boyfriend
Weapon: Knife
Town: Charlotte

Date: August 18, 2011 Murder/Suicide
Victim Name: Darron Davis, 23
Alleged Perpetrator Name: Edris Dickson
Relationship: Ex-girlfriend
Town: Charlotte
Weapon: Firearm

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