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Help Is Available For Domestic Violence Victims

Two San Angelo area women have died in shootings related to Concho Valley domestic violence cases. Police say they answer an average of about 25 domestic violence calls every day.
Two San Angelo area women have died in shootings related to Concho Valley domestic violence cases. Police say they answer an average of about 24 domestic violence calls every day.

Michelle Kingston has the story.

Just weeks ago, a man shot and killed his wife and her brother in Wall. In Grape Creek this past weekend, another man shot and killed his wife.

"Both of them, we had not received any prior calls for," Tom Green County Sheriff David Jones said.

The sheriff sat down with KLST on Wednesday with Police Chief Tim Vasquez to stress that if anyone is in an abusive relationship, dealing with domestic violence, they need to call for help.

"Without reporting it, we can't help them get the services they need," Jones said.

The Crisis Intervention Unit will provide anyone in a violent home with the resources to find a safe haven -- a place such as NewBridge Family Shelter.

"We're trying to help the transition," New Bridge Family Shelter's Education Coordinator Anthony Lopez said. "We're providing them with resources for childcare, employment, for counseling."

Sheriff Jones says domestic violence is the police department's number one call for service -- and the sheriff department's, too. The police department reports they receive 24 calls a day. Jones says it is not because of the oil boom or the increase in population. He says it is a social issue.

"This happened before we had our economic boom here and it will happen afterward," he said. "It's just society today."

Domestic violence happens everywhere -- in big cities and small towns. It's the leading cause of injury for women in the United States -- and in Texas alone, in 2011, it resulted in the death of 104 women.

"We don't want to see that kind of violence in our community," Jones said. "And if we can intervene before it happens, that is what we want."

Lopez says it is important to know NewBridge is here for Tom Green County, with a domestic violence hotline open at all hours of the day for all victims.

"You have to tell someone. I've investigated cases when I was in law enforcement, investigated one in particular, where a victim did not tell a single person and that cost her her life."

Michelle Kingston, KLST News.

The NewBridge Family Shelter hotline is 800-749-8631.


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