A new report from the North Carolina Department of Justice reveals that more than 100 people were killed in domestic violence disputes across the state last year.
Specifically, there were 106 domestic-violence-related homicides in 2011. Mecklenburg County had the highest number of murders attributed to abuse, followed by Durham, Guilford, Forsyth, Buncombe and Cumberland counties. Four people were killed in domestic violence disputes in Wake County.
Victims of domestic violence can seek legal help by taking out protective orders – also known as 50B orders – against the perpetrator of the abuse. A protective order is intended to prevent further abuse from occurring, and a domestic violence lawyer and several other North Carolina agencies can help victims obtain protective orders.
For example, the Domestic Violence Unit at the Wake County Courthouse has been in place since 2002 to help with issues related to protective orders, court dates, show cause hearings, protective order extensions and protective order violations.
Last year’s domestic violence statistics for North Carolina also follow national trends in that the majority of abusers were male. But the numbers mirror statistics showing that women are also perpetrators of domestic violence. Thirty-eight men in North Carolina were reported as domestic violence victims who were abused by women, and 25 women were charged with domestic-related homicides last year.
Statewide systems are also in place for domestic violence victims who have managed to get away from their abusers, according to the Department of Justice. The Address Confidentiality Program hides victims’ actual addresses so that abusers cannot find them.
Here’s how it works:
Victims can join the Address Confidentiality Program and have their first-class mail sent to them at an address chosen by the N.C. Attorney General’s office. That mail is then forwarded to the participant’s actual address. The fabricated address can even be used to obtain a driver’s license, register to vote and sign up for utilities, according to a news release.
If you or your family is being subjected to physical or sexual abuse in North Carolina, our Raleigh family lawyers urge you to contact an attorney, women’s shelter, domestic violence shelter or social service agency such as InterAct of Wake County. InterAct can be reached at (919) 828-7501. There are also 24-hour crisis lines for domestic violence victims. Please call (919) 828-7741 or (866) 291-0855 for help.
Acts of domestic violence are difficult to handle. The parties involved share a close, personal relationship and domestic violence often goes unreported. A family law attorney at our Raleigh law firm can assist you in stating a claim for relief from domestic violence. Our lawyers know how to obtain restraining orders, and we know the rights and the protections that are built into North Carolina’s domestic violence laws. Contact us or call us today at 877-589-6835.