A day after a murder-suicide in Hewitt, a nonprofit that aims to end domestic violence said Central Texas had a spike of violence-related deaths in 2017 compared to previous years.
Family Abuse Center Executive Director Kathy Reid said six women died last year because of domestic violence in our area. In two of those cases, children also lost their lives, including a one-year-old.
- Penny Stovall, 43 and MacKenzie, 8, died in a murder-suicide in Navarro County
- Monica Tharpe , died in a murder-suicide in Bruceville Eddy
- Debra Murdock Ballard
- Valarie Martinez and her daughter one-year-old daughter Azariah died after authorities said they were shot in the head in McLennan County
- Twila Mooney died in a murder-suicide at Speegleville Marina
- The body of Tia Marie Spearman was found in Ellis County after being reported missing for two months.
According to Reid, domestic violence involves stalking and emotional abuse, which may not be visible unless someone shares it with you.
"There are so many cases where you think it's a healthy relationship. The couple has been together for a long time and you have no idea what's behind the scenes happening between them that could at some point explode to the point where someone actually dies," Reid said.
If you or someone you know is a domestic violence victim, contact the Family Abuse Center at their 24-hour hotline 1-800-283-8401. If you are in danger, please call 911. If you would like to donate to the group, you can visit their website or email email@example.com
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