The purpose of this circular is to standardize domestic violence awareness information presented during community crime prevention meetings. The circular is designed to assist Department personnel conducting community crime prevention meetings to impart basic Domestic Violence Awareness information to members of the community.
Many domestic violence victims decline to report the incidents because they fear the abuser, and also lack knowledge of community resources available to help them survive. Domestic violence victims are so impacted by violence they feel their situation is hopeless and beyond escape.
California Penal Code section 13700 (a) reads as follows:
"Abuse" means intentionally or recklessly causing or attempting to cause bodily injury, or placing another person in reasonable apprehension of imminent serious bodily injury to himself or herself, or another.
California Penal Code section 13700 (b) reads as follows:
"Domestic violence" means "abuse" committed against an adult or fully emancipated minor who is a spouse, former spouse, cohabitant, former cohabitant, or person with whom the suspect has had a child or is having or has had a dating or engagement relationship.
Violence includes, but is not limited to the following circumstances:
- Physical - hitting or burning;
- Sexual - rape or incest;
- Emotional - threatening, insulting or harassing; and
- Neglect - poor physical or emotional care.
FACTS ABOUT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
There are many people in our society who still believe in the myth that only a man is capable of being abusive and that only a woman can suffer abuse. The truth is anyone can be a victim of domestic violence. Abusers can be of any gender and abuse happens in all walks of life. Many victims and abusers grew up in abusive homes. Characteristics of the classic abuser and victim may include the following:
- Blames others for their behavior;
- Demonstrates very jealous behaviors;
- Low self-esteem;
- Will often have legal problems, fines or prior jail convictions for domestic violence crimes; and
- Abusers make excuses, such as "blaming" the abuse on other people or situations.
Examples of "blaming" statements are as follows:
- "I had a rough day at work and it's your fault."
- "The boss gave me a demotion because of you."
- May have suffered serious physical injury in the past from abuse;
- May experience depression, low self-esteem, anxiety, helplessness and a sense of worthlessness;
- May blame himself/herself for the violence; and
- May believe no one can help them get out of the violent relationship.
Incidents of domestic violence often go unreported by victims for the following reasons:
- Victims do not realize they are in a dangerous and/or violent situation;
- Victims do not recognize the domestic violence signals;
- Victims feel ashamed, hopeless or they are in denial;
- Victims sense they have no alternatives;
- Victims sense no one can protect them; and
- Victims do not know of services available to them or how they can obtain these services.
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE PREVENTION TIPS
- Watch for personality changes such as more aggressive, violent, moody or accusing behavior;
- Develop a plan of action and instruct your children about the plan;
- Locate a safe house such as the home of a trusted friend, trusted neighbor or family member;
- Locate a safe shelter that is suitable to your needs and accepts children if necessary; and
- Seek counseling assistance.
EMERGENCY PROTECTIVE ORDER (EPO)
Police officers at the scene can obtain an Emergency Protective Order (EPO) for your safety.
- The EPO can be served by any police officer, anytime of the day or evening;
- A police officer may use his/her judgement and obtain an EPO even if the victim is reluctant;
- The EPO is valid for five days; and
- The EPO is free of charge.
TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER (TRO), RESTRAINING ORDER (RO), DOMESTIC VIOLENCE RESTRAINING ORDER (DVRO)
- Victim must go to Superior Court;
- The order is valid for three weeks;
- A police officer can serve the order;
- When an order has expired, it is the responsibility of the victim to reinstate the order by going back to court; and
- All orders are free of charge.
Take a stand. Reach out to someone in the community if you believe they are a victim of domestic violence, and are being abused. Do not give up easily, change takes time. Part of the abuser’s power comes from secrecy. Victims are often ashamed to let anyone know about their violent partner. Ending the isolation is a critical first step. Victims of domestic violence rarely complain. They will not tell friends, relatives, neighbors or the Police Department. Victims of domestic violence come from all walks of life, all cultures, all incomes, all ages, and religious backgrounds. They share similar feelings of guilt, helplessness, isolation, fear and shame. They hope in vain it won't happen to them again, but hope does not stop the violence.
Help if you can.
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIM RESOURCES
|Domestic Violence Safety Plan Hotline
|| (800) 978-3600
|1736 Family Crisis Center, South Bay
|| (310) 379-3620
|Domestic Violence, Santa Clarita (Spanish)
|| (661) 259-8175
|Center for Pacific Asian Families, LA Hotline
|| (323) 653-4042 (24-hr.)
|Family Violence Project/Jewish Family Service
|| (818) 505-0900
|Good Shepherd Shelter, LA
|| (323) 737-6111
|Haven Hills, San Fernando Valley
|| (818) 887-6589
|Jenesse Center, South Central LA
|| (323) 731-6500
|Rainbow Services, San Pedro (Spanish) Hotline
|| (310) 547-9343
Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office Family Violence Division (Spanish)
| (213) 974-3785
|Free Spirit Crisis Line Hotline
|| (323) 937-1312
|East Los Angeles Bilingual Hotlines
|| (323) 268-7564
|Los Angeles Commission On Assaults Against Women Domestic Violence & Sexual Assault Hotlines:
(24-hr.) Central LA
(24-hr.) West LA
(24-hr.) Pasadena/West San Gabriel Valley
(M-F 9 to 5)
|Sojourn-Santa Monica- Bilingual Hotline
|| (310) 264–6644
|LAC-USC Medical Center Violence Intervention Program, LA
|| (323) 226-3961
|Olive View Medical Center, Sylmar
|| (818) 364-4236
|Harbor Free Clinic, San Pedro
|| (310) 547-0202
|Hollywood/Sunset Free Clinic, Hollywood
|| (323) 660-2400
|Los Angeles Free Clinic, Central LA
|| (323) 653-8622
|T.H.E. Clinic for Women, Southwest LA
|| (323) 295-6571
|Women’s & Childrens Hospital, LA
|| (323) 226-3061
|Fuller Counseling & Family Services
|| (626) 584-5550
|Covenant House California, Hollywood
|| (323) 461-3131
|Info Line, LA
|| (800) 339-6993
|YWCA WINGS (Spanish/English) Hotline
|| (626) 967-0658
|Los Angeles Gay and Lesbian Center
|| (323) 993-7640
|Barrister's Domestic Violence Counseling Project
|| (213) 624-3665
|Los Angeles Free Clinic, Legal Dept, Central LA
|| (323) 653-1990
|Legal Protection for Women (Spanish)
|| (323) 721-9882
Women's Equal Rights, Legal Defense & Education Fund
| (323) 653-8087
|Center for Pacific Asian Families Hotline
|| (800) 339-3940
|Center for Individual & Family Counseling
| (818) 761-2227
COUNSELING AND OUTREACH
|Friends of the Family
|| (818) 988-4430
|Family Violence Project Hotline
|| (818) 505-0900
|Kedren Mental Health Center, LA
|| (323) 233-0425
|Southern California Counseling Center, LA Hotline
|| (323) 937-1344