What can we learn from Alaska's law on Domestic Violence……
I flipped to the National Geographic channel to find Alaska State Troopers one day. Watching was a blessing. The show opened my eyes to ending domestic violence. Ending domestic violence is happening now, not somewhere in the future. We have to raise our voices louder and demand the same protection for all abused in other states. Below are notes taken while watching several episodes.
Fairbanks, Alaska has the highest number of domestic violence cases in the America.
Domestic violence calls dispatch to Troopers as top priority status. Everyone on scene interviewed, once established as domestic violence case, it’s an automatic assault charge and trip to jail. Other charges will follow based on situation.
This is a very condensed version of what I watched:
A fight escalates, the female screaming loudly to get out of house. Punched multiple times, raped and once outside pulled by the hair back into house. When police arrive she’s in front yard in bra and panties, visible marks of being hit in face, crying and trying to convince police nothing happened. Troopers receive education on domestic violence behavior. One officer goes in to house with gun drawn. The second keeps lightly pushing, why is she in the front yard in her bra and panties with visible marks to her face. The male taken to side of house, interviewed, handcuffed and lead to car. Officer’s provide jacket to cover herself and support, she tells what happened leaving out being raped. Her disheveled appearance tips one officer to ask what else happened. She bows head crying not wanting to got to hospital, tells of being raped. Thru the support and gentle urging she agrees to hospital. The male charged with assault and kidnapping for not allow her to leave.
A neighbor hears a woman screaming, goes to investigate. He witnesses a man beating a women which quickly spills to front yard. Neighbor calls police, they arrive to see a man running into woods. One heads in to woods with gun drawn. The second officer discovers the male running is jealous of her other boyfriend. He looked thru window see other boyfriend there and breaks in back door. He also assaulted the man. The abuser charged with assault and taken into jail.
In Alaska there is no first time pass, first time and every time abuser goes to jail. The top priority status given to DV calls backed by state laws written to protect all citizens, gives me hope. The laws in other states sound good to those who turn an eye on the problem. When states charge a teen for smoking pot to a seven-year jail term and a murderer walks out in less than two years on good behavior, the legal system requires an overhaul. As a paying taxpayer we have the right to vote, speak out and advocate for change. My illness keeps me from taking the time to research Alaska state laws and start Change.org petitions. I challenge you to start petitions and once circulating, commit to signing. How to make a Change.org petition on domestic violence successful? A separate petition to each states political leaders, national law makers and the President. Petitions are more effective if quotes from supportive law makers or an influential maker in your state included. Yesterday all NFL owners met in Texas to agree on a Domestic Violence Policy. I blew a gasket at the message the NFL sent to women. Jerry Jones, the owner of the Cowboys spoke after the meeting. Asked if he thought the policy went far enough. Jerry replied enough is never enough. I felt proud an influential maker lived in our state. I commit all the support possible to everyone who starts petition.