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Articles Tagged with Charlotte Domestic Violence Attorneys

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DomesticViol-200x200“Britny’s Law” went into effect on December 1, 2017, enhancing the penalties for domestic violence in North Carolina, according to an article by WRAL.

Three years ago, Britny Puryear was stuck in a vicious relationship. At that time, Britny lived with her boyfriend in Fuqua-Varina, North Carolina. Over the course of four years, their relationship became increasingly abusive. The relationship ended after a violent argument in 2014, when the boyfriend shot and killed Britny in their home.

The boyfriend was arrested and charged with second-degree murder. He pleaded guilty in court and received a 32-year jail term. The boyfriend is currently serving his sentence.

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DomeViol2-200x200Advocates against domestic violence organized a march in Charlotte on September 28th, according to an article by FOX 46 Charlotte.

Featuring domestic violence victims, members of the community and law enforcement officials in their ranks, the advocates marched along North Tryon Street. They displayed a number of signs with messages such as “verbal abuse is domestic abuse” and “men, step up and prevent dv.”

A domestic violence counselor for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD) highlighted the importance of establishing a support network for victims. The counselor also underlined the CMPD dedication to domestic violence issues, with six detectives and four counselors available to victims. The counselor also highlighted the partnership between the CMPD and the Charlotte branch of the Domestic Violence Advocacy Council.

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DomesticViolVictim-200x200Appearing before a judge in court, not to mention cases that involve a jury, can be intimidating. For victims who have been sexually assaulted, emotionally tormented, or physically beaten, facing the perpetrator in court can be a truly traumatic event. Luckily, an attorney will help walk you through this process and ensure that you are ready when the time comes to face your violent partner, or will help your child feel secure, brave, and truthful. Additionally, there are new options emerging in North Carolina to help witnesses and victims in court, such as the use of courthouse therapy dogs.

Courthouse Dog, Teghan, to be First Therapy Dog Used in North Carolina Court

While the concept is still catching on in North Carolina, many other states have adopted the use of courthouse dogs as sources of therapy during high-stress cases for people exposed to domestic violence, and other victims. Recently, Johnston County became the first to allow the use of a courthouse dog, according to WRAL News. Teghan, a yellow lab, will help ease the pain, fear, and anxiety that many people feel in Johnston County. Local businesses have paid for veterinary costs, the dog’s training, and other expenses all in an effort to level the playing field for victims in court.

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DomesticViolVictim2-200x200If you have been trapped in an abusive relationship and do not know why you have been unable to leave, or family members and friends do not understand why you are still in the relationship, there is a very clear cut answer. It is not just you. There is nothing wrong with you or abnormal with your behavior, because, in fact, there is chemical bond that makes it incredibly difficult to sever even the most abusive, violent relationships. This bond is called trauma bonding, and while we strongly encourage you to call an attorney and law enforcement for help today, it is important that you know why you may have been struggling to break free for so long.

We all Have Bonds, but Those Who Experience Trauma Have Even More Intense Bonds With Their Partners

Humans are social animals, which means that we form strong bonds with one another. These emotional attachments help us see from another’s point of view, let us forgive one another after an argument or fight, provide high levels of care for others, and, overall, make society as we know it possible. Bonds also make it exceedingly difficult when we lose a loved one, whether it is due to death, divorce, or separation. When trauma is involved, the strength of that bond is drastically increased. A trauma bond is the “misuse of fear, excitement, sexual feelings, and sexual physiology to entangle another person,” according to the Abuse and Relationships Organization. When two people share a traumatic experience together, such as surviving a disastrous mountaineering trip or another type of accident, a special, traumatic, bond is formed. A traumatic bond is also formed when two people engage in extreme sports or activities, or when the relationship is physically, emotionally, or psychologically abusive. Moreover, if a person experienced traumatic incidents earlier in their life, they are even more prone to traumatic bonding with their abusive partner due to cognitive learning.

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DomesticViol-200x200North Carolina is currently considering adopting a new law requiring domestic violence offenders to wear ankle GPS bracelets to track their whereabouts. The House Bill, H.B. 46, is also referred to as Allison’s law because it could, if made into a law, save lives such as Allison Holt, who was killed by her estranged husband back in 2009 two days after she filed a restraining order against him. A staggering 60 percent of violence-caused injuries were inflicted on family members, loved ones, or acquaintances, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics and reported by Mother Jones. And, 60 percent of those injuries happened at home. Additionally, 79 percent of murders, when the victim-murderer relationship was known, were incidents where the victim was a loved one, friend, or acquaintance of the murderer. By keeping tabs on the violent person, lawmakers hope to curb the deaths and injuries of thousands of North Carolina victims each year.

About the Ankle Bracelet and the Program

The bill calls for the offenders to wear the GPS device at all times (24 hours a day). If they are found outside of their approved zone, they will be arrested immediately. This is all to provide safety for their potential victims. Last year in North Carolina there were 64 domestic violence homicides, according to North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence and reported by WNCN News. The lawmakers of the bill are currently undecided and are seeking feedback from a future Department of Public Safety pilot program on the following:

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DomesticViol2-200x200Domestic violence is an ongoing problem in North Carolina and throughout the entire country. It is the crime that is least reported to the authorities, and its victims are put in constant fear for their physical and psychological well being. Many fear for their lives, as roughly one quarter of all murders in this country are committed by a family member. A new bill, Senate Bill 600, may raise the punishment for murders committed by spouses when they have a documented history of domestic violence. The bill, if it becomes law, could automatically make a domestic violence murder, a murder in the first degree. While most first degree murders have to have an element of premeditation, some types of murders do not, such as a murder when another violent crime is being committed, such as burglary. Currently, most spousal murders are charged as second degree murders, as they are seen as a crime of passion. However, some lawmakers believe that when a person who has a history of domestic violence, murders their spouse they should automatically be charged with first degree murder. “What we’re finding is that men are using the defense of, it was just done in the heat of passion, when there’s been a history of domestic violence in that relationship,” said Senator Jeff Jackson, D-Mecklenburg, as reported by WRAL.com. While this may increase the penalty for some murders, even if Senate Bill 600 becomes law, tens of thousands of North Carolina victims of domestic violence will continue living in fear and humiliation until they find the courage with the help of friends and family to speak up and take legal action.

Public Humiliation in Place of Time Behind Bars

Some acts of Domestic violence are a felony in North Carolina, though the degree of punishment varies greatly depending on the circumstances, the injuries caused, and other specifics. However, punishment is also heavily weighted based on the court’s choice of sentencing. District Court Judge Mark Cummings, a North Carolina judge, recently gave two men who pleaded guilty to a crime of domestic violence the option of spending time in jail or public humiliation. Both chose public humiliation, and both seemed to agree that they chose the wrong option, according to KTLA 5 News. Both were ordered to carry a sign that said “This is the Face of Domestic Violence” in front of the courthouse for five hours a day, one sentenced to three days and the other to seven. “It’s pure hell, that’s what it’s like. It’s hell, it’s embarrassment,” said one man who also received online threats afterwards. “My friends now think I beat on women. And I don’t,” according to the other man. According to the director of victim services at Family Services of the Piedmont, Shay Harger, “Domestic violence thrives in secrecy and in the dark so this has people talking.”

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