Aug 8, 2012

Connecticut recieves poor grades in Domestic Violence via CCDV Fatality Report.

The report Domestic Violence Report Connecticut 2012 at the nucleus of this article is sadly but a representative slice of an even larger issue concerning the state of Connecticut's lax sentencing for violent offenders - particularly criminals who predate upon women and children.

The poor grades that Connecticut is officially being presented with via this report ( the report falls short of an\ actual admonishment which it deserves politics politics.) stems from several factors The core of all would appear to be apathy mixed with ignorance specifically criminal justice profesionals lack of awareness regarding the "battered women's syndrome" and/ or a refusal to accept/ act upon this well established phenomonon.\.

The battered woman syndrome was first described by Lenore Walker in the 1990's Walker was a pioneer in researching the psychological interplay within abusive relationships, including the "breaking down " process of the victim of chronic partner or domestic abuse. This includes alienation from family friends that the abuser knows do not approve of him and a methodical eroding of the abused woman's self esteem ( even some of the most beautiful women in the world fall prey to this and believe themselves ugly and usewless thanks to the brainwashing of thier sociopath abusers.

The ignorance on behalf of our criminal justiuce profesionals includes a lack of tutorial type of knowledge, as well as a glaring lack of "emotional intelligence"  which seems rampant in this state. These are the profesionals who are involved with the assaults and other crimes that are notorious for being pre-cursors to dating or domestic homicides. The emotional intelligece needed involves a visceral understanding of what motivates the victims to act in ways thast dont immediately make sense to others and it's equally as important as actual education for police prosecutors etc.

Unfortunately this deadly ignorance is on full display in Connectoict Police departments,and too many prosecutors in our Superior courts,  These are men and women who are ultimately responsible for whether an offender walks out of the courthouse with a slap on the wrist ( and an emboldened sense that they can commit serious assault and  walk through the revolving DV docket doors with zero prison time. If they had committed these dame acts of violence or terrorism agasinst a stranger one can be assured that they would recieve a minium of several years prison.

Activists and advocates alike are amazed and horrified to see the archaic and dangerous thinking that too many Connecticut Connecticut criminal justice professionals still embrace which helps propel the lax sentenecing that results in future fatalities and severe assaults which leave the victim maimed for liofe.

 Every time I hear "well, she went back with the guy..or she keeps talking to the guy" or " why didn't/doesnt she leave him the first time he hit/pushed punched her?" I literally cannnot believe that this is 2012 and we live in one of the supposedely most educated states in the country!

The above mentality places the ownice upon the victim, rather than where it belongs- upon the offender; Asking instead "why does he keep hitting and or pushing and or choking her?  As well as morally repugnant it is breaking the law and cavalierly so as its done again and again until someone is finally killed.

Many years ago, with the advent of the VAWA bill in Washington DC policemen and women were supposed to be taught the progressive approach to domestic violence crime, no longer needed the cooperation of the victim of domestic or intimate violence.

The long overdue recognition was that these were indeed crimes against the state and knowing what we have learned about the battered women's syndrome and recalcritant victim -witnesses, the government has seen a majority of female victims who will try to cover up for their assaulting partner, even lying to police and prosecutors when it comes time to adjudicate these cases.

The offender will utilize either threat or the opposite honeymoon phase tactics, cajoling the victim to recant her testimony to police claiming that they started the violence" or even such lunacy as "I hit myself with the iron." (I have actually witnessed that claim at Ga2 court in Bridgeport whereupon the prosecutors dumped the whole case rather than proceeding to trial, going around the victim as it was clear she was emeshed in a battered syndrome and using the evidence at hand- police reports, family testimoney and medical evidence and photos.

This type of flipping or backing out of testifying is why many states have changed the way they arrest and prosecute these crimes. we have learned and grown as a society, yet apparently the criminal justice system within the State of Connecticut, has either never truly accepted the evolution of or it has regressed en masse, for some reason as seen via attitudes and policys, mostly unofficial policies. And people, mostly women - are dying as a result.

The landmark Domestic Violence civil case against the Torrington Police dept. seemed to be a major turning point for our state; finally getting serious with our arrest policies, and even the way Police thought about this type of crime, arresting "domestic" violent offenders as quickly as they would any violent offender - an assailant a rapist or stalker who is a "stranger" to their victim. something had sparked the necessary change. However, our state has been in retrograde for years and the attitudes are permeating too many Connecticut Police departments and too many Superior Courts responsible for sentencing these offenders, before they kill as well as after. Domestic and partner violence is a deadly but stoppable epidemic.

Please read the linked report re Partner violence fatalities in Connecticut by The Connecticut Coalition Against Domestic violence. It is an eye opener and it is also a first step towards getting involved in this life and death issue that touched all of us who have women in our lives that we care about.