Consequences of Domestic Violence

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October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.

An average of three women are murdered everyday in this country by their husband or romantic partner.

The Wabash Valley is not immune to this type of deadly domestic violence.

Madison Taylor and Rustin Rehmel were close friends.

Madison Taylor, “We got really close. I went over to her house a lot. She kind of became a mother figure to me.”

So close that on the day Rustin died, Madison stood outside in the rain near Rustin’s home in Shelburn.
She was not really sure the news was true.

Rustin killed and Rustin’s boyfriend facing charges for beating her.

Rustin is a victim of domestic violence.
 
Madison Taylor, “It was something nobody saw coming. She never put out any warning signs.”

The director of legal services for the Council On Domestic Abuse says often times, domestic abuse victims are ashamed. It takes an average of seven  incidents of violence for a victim to leave or seek help, but that’s if they survive.

She says when starting a relationship there are potential red flags someone might be an abuser.

Melissa Reed, Director of CODA Legal Services says, “If relationships start real, real quickly and they’re really hot and heavy from the beginning. And say ‘”Oh, I can’t live without you. I’ll die without you. That’s a big warning sign.”  

Vigo County Sheriff Greg Ewing says many of the calls deputies receive involve domestic violence. He says those calls can be dangerous, because tempers are hot and emotions run high. So, he doesn’t like a deputy to go alone.

Sheriff Greg Ewing, “They are very dangerous calls for any law enforcement officer. Typically it’s a two 2 person call.”

The sheriff encourages victims to leave an abuser and those at CODA say they can provide lots of help.

Sheriff Greg Ewing, “No one needs to be treated that way. And I know it’s easy to say that, but they need to confide in a close friend about what’s going on and perhaps engage coda”

Melissa Reed, “We have quite a few success stories where they’ve been able to either come into our shelter or accessed our services through the courthouse.”
    
As for Madison, she misses her friend.
    
Rustin’s boyfriend still awaits trial for her death.
    
Meanwhile, if you would like to get in touch with CODA you can call their crisis hotline at 800-566-CODA.
 

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