October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and to bring more attention to the topic the Santa Monica Police Department has teamed up with the Santa Monica Commission on the Status of Women to urge people to report abuse, request arrests and seek support.
Domestic violence is a pattern of abusive behavior —physical, emotional, sexual and/or economic — that is used by one partner in the relationship to gain or maintain power and control over the other in both heterosexual and same-sex relationships, law enforcement officials said in a news released issued Tuesday.
Nationwide, an average of three women lose their lives each day as a result of domestic violence.
One of those women was Christina Talley, 46, a grocery clerk at a local Albertsons who was fatally stabbed by her estranged husband in August of last year while she was at work. Kelvin Green was arrested for the murder and is in custody awaiting trial.
“Beyond the workplace, domestic violence makes far too many family homes places of fear for battered spouses and for children who witness or experience such abuse,” officials wrote in the news release. “Even when children in an abusive household are not directly injured, exposure to violence in the home can contribute to long-term behavioral, social, and emotional problems that play out in forms such as bullying in schools, post-traumatic disorders, alcohol and drug abuse, and dating and gang violence.”
Domestic violence is the number one health issue for women and girls and impacts nearly one in seven women and more than 3 million children. Women between the ages of 16 and 24 are among the most vulnerable to intimate partner violence. Studies show 1.5 million high school students experience physical abuse from a dating partner each year. The economic cost of this crime is enormous and said to exceed $5.8 billion each year.
Victims should seek support from trained professionals. Resources available include:
• L.A. Commission on Assaults Against Women 24-hour crisis line: (310) 392-8381;
• Legal Aid Foundation of L.A., Domestic Violence Clinic for restraining orders or legal advice: Santa Monica City Courthouse, Room 121, Monday through Fridays from 8:30 a.m. until 11:30 a.m.;
• SMPD Crimes Against Persons Unit: For emergencies, call 911 or to report a crime that is a non-emergency, (310) 458-8491; for questions or to seek resources without reporting, (310) 458-8451;
• Sojourn Shelter for Battered Women 24-hour crisis line: (310) 264-6644.