Articles, Blog

Panel on Intersection of Firearms & Domestic Violence


WOMAN: GOOD AFTERNOON,
EVERYBODY. I THINK WE’RE STARTING
RIGHT ON TIME. THANK YOU ALL
FOR BEING HERE AT THIS FORUM ON THE INTERSECTION OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND FIREARMS. I’M REALLY EXCITED TO SEE
SO MANY ADVOCATES AND LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS AND GOVERNMENT COLLEAGUES
HERE TODAY, SO, THANK YOU FOR TAKING
THE TIME TO BE HERE. WE’RE HERE TO COMMEMORATE BOTH DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
AWARENESS MONTH AND THE FIRST NATIONAL
COMMUNITY POLICING WEEK. WE USE THESE OBSERVATIONS
TO RECOGNIZE THE PROGRESS THAT WE’VE MADE WHILE RECOMMITTING OURSELVES TO IMPROVING OUR EFFORTS
TO PREVENT VIOLENCE AND IMPROVE PUBLIC SAFETY
IN COMMUNITIES ALL ACROSS THE COUNTRY. AS WE ALL KNOW,
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CONTINUES TO ENDANGER MILLIONS
OF WOMEN, MEN, CHILDREN, AND FAMILIES
EVERY YEAR. IN FACT, EVERY MINUTE,
20 PEOPLE IN THE UNITED STATES ARE VICTIMS OF PHYSICAL VIOLENCE
BY AN INTIMATE PARTNER. AND ONE IN 3 WOMEN AND ONE IN 10
MEN, OR 45 MILLION ADULTS, EXPERIENCE PHYSICAL VIOLENCE,
RAPE, OR STALKING BY AN INTIMATE PARTNER
AT SOME POINT IN THEIR LIVES. AND I KNOW THAT FOR ALL OF US, THAT THESE NUMBERS
ARE UNACCEPTABLE FOR A NATION THAT’S COMMITTED
TO ERADICATING DOMESTIC ABUSE. AND COUPLED WITH
THESE STATISTICS, THERE ARE EXAMPLES IN THE NEWS
EVERY DAY OF THE DEVASTATING TOLL
THAT GUN VIOLENCE TAKES ON OUR COMMUNITIES. AND WHILE IT MIGHT BE
LESS OBVIOUS FROM THE HEADLINES, THE OVERLAP OF THESE
TWO OBSERVANCES AND THESE TWO SOCIAL PROBLEMS
IS SIGNIFICANT. THE CORRELATION BETWEEN
THE PRESENCE OF GUNS AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
IS STAGGERING. RESEARCH CONDUCTED BY OUR
COLLEAGUES AT JOHNS HOPKINS FOUND THAT THE PRESENCE OF A GUN
IN A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SITUATION INCREASES THE RISK OF HOMICIDE
FOR WOMEN BY 500%. SO, IT’S BY 500% THAT
IF THERE’S A GUN IN THE HOME, THAT INCREASES THE RISK
BY 500%. IN 2013, 895 WOMEN
IN THE UNITED STATES WERE KILLED BY A HUSBAND,
A BOYFRIEND, OR AN EX-HUSBAND, AND MORE THAN HALF
OF THESE KILLINGS WERE–MURDERS INVOLVED GUNS. 72% OF MURDER-SUICIDES
INVOLVED AN INTIMATE PARTNER, AND EVERYTOWN
FOR GUN SAFETY REPORTS THAT THE REAL TARGET
FOR 57% OF MASS SHOOTINGS IS A CURRENT OR FORMER INTIMATE PARTNER
OR FAMILY MEMBER. THESE ARE HARROWING STATISTICS
THAT REPRESENT THE LIVES OF REAL PEOPLE, BUT WE DO HAVE SOLUTIONS. THERE ARE FEDERAL
AND STATE LAWS AND OTHER STRATEGIES THAT
CAN PREVENT THESE TRAGEDIES, BUT LAWS NEED TO BE ENFORCED AND STRATEGIES MUST BE
IMPLEMENTED AND STUDIED. SO, WE’RE HERE TODAY
TO RAISE AWARENESS, TO PROMOTE PROMISING PRACTICES, AND LEARN FROM EACH OTHER
TO DISCOVER NEW SOLUTIONS TO ADDRESS THE INTERSECTION OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND FIREARMS. TODAY, WE’LL HEAR
FROM A PANEL OF EXPERTS WHO ARE DEDICATED TO FINDING
AND USING THESE SOLUTIONS IN COMMUNITIES ALL ACROSS
THE COUNTRY. I HOPE THAT THEIR PRESENTATIONS AS WELL AS OUR DISCUSSIONS
HERE TODAY CAN HELP INFORM ALL OF US
AND OUR COMMUNITIES ON WAYS WE CAN WORK TOGETHER TO REDUCE GUN VIOLENCE
AND DOMESTIC ABUSE BY FOCUSING ON WHERE
THESE ISSUES CONVERGE. WE’RE ALSO LAUNCHING
A NEW WEB SITE TODAY, AND THAT WILL TAKE THE SHAPE OF
THE NATIONAL RESOURCE CENTER, WHICH WILL PROVIDE
UP-TO-DATE INFORMATION AND MODEL STRATEGIES
FOR COMMUNITIES, AND IT WILL BE A RESOURCE
THAT WILL LAST LONG AFTER THIS WEEK AND LONG
AFTER THIS MONTH ARE OVER. STOPPING DOMESTIC ABUSE
AND ENDING GUN VIOLENCE ARE PIECES OF THE SAME MISSION, SO, THANK YOU ALL AGAIN
FOR BEING HERE TODAY AND FOR BEING
PART OF THE SOLUTION. I’D NOW LIKE YOU
TO JOIN ME IN WELCOMING A KEY PARTNER AND A DRIVING
FORCE FOR CHANGE, POSITIVE CHANGE HERE AT
THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE. THE HONORABLE SALLY Q. YATES, WHO’S A DEPUTY ATTORNEY GENERAL
OF THE UNITED STATES. [APPLAUSE] YATES: WELL, BEA, THANK YOU
FOR YOUR INTRODUCTION, BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY,
THANK YOU FOR YOUR TRULY OUTSTANDING LEADERSHIP
OF THE OFFICE OF VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN. YOU DO AN UNBELIEVABLE JOB.
[APPLAUSE] AND RUTH,
THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE NATIONAL COALITION
AGAINST DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE TODAY, WHAT YOU DO EVERY DAY, AND ALSO FOR BEING WILLING TO
SHARE YOUR STORY WITH US TODAY. [APPLAUSE] NOW, AS BEA SAID,
WE’RE GATHERING HERE TODAY DURING DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
AWARENESS MONTH TO STAND WITH SURVIVORS
AND TO RECOGNIZE THE PROGRESS THAT WE’VE MADE BUT,
MUCH MORE IMPORTANTLY, TO RECOMMIT OURSELVES
TO THE WORK AHEAD. TO BUILD A COUNTRY
WHERE NOBODY SUFFERS FROM THE HORRORS OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. NOW, THE STATISTICS
THAT BEA JUST CITED ARE REALLY STARTLING. I MEAN, IF YOU LET THEM
WASH OVER YOU AND KIND OF SINK IN,
ABSOLUTELY STARTLING, BUT BEHIND EVERY ONE
OF THOSE NUMBERS IS A PERSON. A PERSON WHOSE LIFE WAS
DEVASTATED BY DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, AND WE KNOW THAT
THE INTERSECTION OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
AND FIREARMS IS A PARTICULARLY
DEADLY COMBINATION. AS BEA SAID, INCREASING
THE LIKELIHOOD OF A HOMICIDE BY 500% JUST WITH THE PRESENCE
OF A FIREARM IN THE HOME. SO, WE KNOW THAT WHEN ABUSERS
HAVE ACCESS TO FIREARMS, IT PRESENTS NOT JUST
A RISK TO THE VICTIMS BUT TO OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS,
TO BYSTANDERS, TO EVERYONE WHO CAN END UP
BEING IN HARM’S WAY. SO, WHAT DO WE DO ABOUT IT? WELL, WE KNOW THAT THE FEDERAL
LAWS THAT WE HAVE, OUR FEDERAL FIREARMS LAWS,
ARE DESIGNED TO KEEP GUNS OUT OF THE HANDS OF
DOMESTIC ABUSERS. AND DESIGNED IN TWO WAYS–ONE,
IF YOU’RE CONVICTED OF A CRIME, AND YOU ALL KNOW THIS; I DON’T
NEED TO BE TELLING YOU THIS. YOU’RE THE EXPERTS.
BUT, YOU KNOW, IF YOU’RE CONVICTED OF A CRIME
OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, EVEN A MISDEMEANOR CONVICTION, YOU’RE PROHIBITED FROM OWNING
A FIREARM, OR IF YOU HAVE A PROTECTIVE
ORDER ENTERED AGAINST YOU BECAUSE OF AN ACT
OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, AND AS A CONSEQUENCE OF THAT,
OVER THE LAST 18 YEARS, THOSE BACKGROUND CHECKS
THAT ARE DONE THROUGH THE FBI NICS SYSTEM
HAVE KEPT 126,000 WOULD-BE GUN BUYERS WHO WERE CONVICTED
OF MISDEMEANOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CRIMES,
IT’S PREVENTED 126,000 OF THEM FROM BEING ABLE TO GET A GUN. AND 53,000 WOULD-BE GUN BUYERS WHO WERE SUBJECT TO
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE RESTRAINING ORDERS WERE NOT
ABLE TO GET A FIREARM. SO, THOSE STATISTICS BEA WAS
CITING WOULD BE EVEN WORSE BUT FOR THAT, BUT WE KNOW
THAT THE NICS SYSTEM IS ONLY AS GOOD
AS THE INFORMATION THAT IS INPUT INTO
THE NICS SYSTEM, AND SO, THAT’S WHY
EARLIER THIS YEAR, IN JANUARY, DOJ REACHED OUT
TO ALL OF THE STATES TO LAY OUT FOR THEM
HOW CRITICALLY IMPORTANT IT IS THAT THEY SUBMIT ALL RELEVANT
INFORMATION TO THE NICS SYSTEM AND PARTICULARLY HIGHLIGHTING
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE INFORMATION. THE ATTORNEY GENERAL
SENT A LETTER TO EVERY SINGLE GOVERNOR
IN THE STATE LAYING OUT WHY
THIS IS IMPORTANT AND WHAT WE NEEDED THEM TO DO TO REDOUBLE THEIR EFFORTS. AND WE NEED TO KEEP THE PRESSURE
UP ON THE STATES TO BE REALLY VIGILANT
ABOUT THE INFORMATION THAT THEY’RE INPUTTING
INTO THE NICS SYSTEM SO THAT WE CAN KEEP GUNS
OUT OF THE HANDS OF DOMESTIC ABUSERS. WHAT ELSE CAN WE DO?
WELL, I’LL ACKNOWLEDGE TO YOU THAT THE PROSECUTION OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CASES IS FOR THE MOST PART
SOMETHING THAT IS HANDLED BY OUR STATE
AND LOCAL COLLEAGUES, OUR STATE
AND LOCAL PROSECUTORS, BUT THAT DOESN’T MEAN
THAT THERE’S NOT A ROLE FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
TO BE PLAYING, AND A ROLE THAT
WE ARE PLAYING IN THIS. FOR EXAMPLE, EARLIER THIS YEAR,
WE REACHED OUT AGAIN TO ALL OF OUR U.S. ATTORNEYS– THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE
THAT’S OUT IN THE FIELD– TO ASK THEM TO REDOUBLE
THEIR EFFORTS TO PREVENT PROHIBITED PERSONS
FROM ACQUIRING FIREARMS, INCLUDING THOSE WHO HAD
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE PROHIBITORS, AND LAST YEAR, AS YOU ALL
PROBABLY KNOW, OVW ISSUED SOME REALLY IMPORTANT
GUIDANCE TO LAW ENFORCEMENT, STATE AND LOCAL
LAW ENFORCEMENT, AND HOW TO RESPOND TO
SEXUAL ASSAULT CASES, BECAUSE WE KNOW WHAT AN IMPACT THAT BIAS, EXPLICIT OR USUALLY, MORE COMMONLY,
IMPLICIT BIAS CAN HAVE WHEN INVESTIGATORS
ARE INVESTIGATING A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CASE, HOW THAT IMPLICIT BIAS
CAN IMPACT HOW THEY RESPOND TO THOSE
SEXUAL ASSAULT CASES, AND AS A RESULT OF THAT,
IT CAN RESULT IN MISCLASSIFYING OR UNDERREPORTING
THOSE CASES. AND WHEN THAT HAPPENS,
THAT INDIVIDUAL IS NOT PROHIBITED FROM BEING
ABLE TO GET A FIREARM, AND SO, THE VIOLENCE CYCLE
CONTINUES THERE. OVW’S GUIDANCE IS REALLY CLEAR AND ENCOURAGES LAW ENFORCEMENT
AGENCIES TO SET OUT VERY SPECIFIC
POLICIES AND PRACTICES FOR HOW THEY WILL HANDLE
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND DOMESTIC
SEXUAL ABUSE CASES, AND ENCOURAGES THESE LOCAL
LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCIES TO NOT ONLY TRAIN IN THIS
BUT TO MAKE SURE THAT THEY ARE PUTTING
ACCOUNTABILITY PROCEDURES IN PLACE AS WELL TO ENSURE THAT LAW ENFORCEMENT
IS FOLLOWING THE POLICIES THAT THEY LAY OUT. WE’RE ALSO DOING WHAT WE CAN
WITH RESPECT TO FUNDING. JUST BY WAY OF ONE EXAMPLE,
EARLIER THIS YEAR, WE ANNOUNCED ABOUT $3.2 MILLION
IN INVESTMENTS TO TRY TO HELP
LOCAL COMMUNITIES PREVENT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
HOMICIDES. I’M PROUD OF THE EFFORTS
THAT THE DEPARTMENT IS DIRECTING IN THIS AREA,
BUT, YOU KNOW, THERE’S A WHOLE LOT MORE TO DO. A LOT MORE FOR ALL OF US
TO BE DOING. AND YOU ALL, MANY OF YOU,
ARE THE ONES WHO ARE ON THE FRONT LINES
OF DOING THIS. AND SO, I WANT TO THANK YOU FOR
WHAT EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU DOES EVERY DAY
IN EDUCATING THE PUBLIC, AND HELPING VICTIMS AND
SURVIVORS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND ADDRESSING AND IMPLEMENTING IMPORTANT PREVENTION MEASURES TO TRY TO PREVENT
OUR CITIZENS FROM BEING VICTIMS OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
TO BEGIN WITH. I THINK IT’S GONNA BE
A GREAT FORUM TODAY WHERE YOU’RE GONNA
BE ABLE TO HEAR FROM REAL EXPERTS IN THE FIELD, NOT JUST TALKING
ABOUT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE BUT OUR TOPIC TODAY–
THE INTERSECTION OF FIREARMS
WITH DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. WE’RE GONNA KEEP
WORKING ON THIS HERE AT THE DEPARTMENT
OF JUSTICE, BOTH BEA AND A WHOLE LOT
OF OTHER FOLKS WHO ARE VERY PASSIONATE
ON THESE ISSUES, AND WE’RE GONNA CONTINUE
TO COUNT ON YOU AND YOUR PARTNERSHIP
IN DOING THAT. I WISH I WAS ABLE–I’LL BE ABLE
TO STAY FOR A FEW MINUTES. I’VE GOT TO RUN OUT
TO CATCH A FLIGHT TO GO TO MY SON’S PARENTS’
WEEKEND AT COLLEGE AFTER THIS, SO, I CAN’T BE LATE FOR THAT,
SO, I’M SORRY THAT I CAN’T STAY WITH YOU FOR
THE BALANCE OF THE AFTERNOON, BUT I’LL BE LOOKING
FORWARD TO HEARING ABOUT WHAT YOU ALL LEARN
AND THE IDEAS THAT YOU HAD THIS AFTERNOON
AND CONTINUING TO WORK WITH YOU
IN THE FUTURE AS WELL. SO, THANKS VERY MUCH. [APPLAUSE] HANSON: THANKS SO MUCH,
DEPUTY ATTORNEY GENERAL YATES. IT’S WONDERFUL
TO HAVE YOU HERE. NOW I WANT TO INTRODUCE
RUTH GLENN. RUTH IS, AS THE DEPUTY
ATTORNEY GENERAL SAID, IS THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
OF THE NATIONAL COALITION AGAINST DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
AND HAS BEEN A FIERCE ADVOCATE
FOR MANY YEARS IN ADDRESSING THE ISSUES
OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. SHE’S A SURVIVOR, A THRIVER,
AND A VERY IMPORTANT COLLEAGUE. SO, RUTH,
PLEASE COME AND JOIN US. [APPLAUSE] GLENN: GOOD AFTERNOON.
THANK YOU, BEA, AND THANK YOU SO MUCH
TO THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE AND THE OFFICE OF
VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN. FOR THOSE OF YOU THAT KNOW ME
AND FOR THOSE OF YOU THAT DON’T, THIS IS A VERY, VERY IMPORTANT
TOPIC TO ME. SO, TO HAVE THIS KIND OF FORUM
AND TALK ABOUT THIS ISSUE SPECIFICALLY
IS FANTASTIC, AND I HOPE IT WON’T
BE THE LAST. I’M GONNA PUT MY GLASSES ON
BECAUSE I CANNOT SEE. HA! I’M HONORED TO BE HERE TODAY AMONG MY ESTEEMED COLLEAGUES AND ALL OF YOU EXPERTS. I’M HAPPY TO BE HERE, BUT IT IS
ALSO WITH A BIT OF MELANCHOLY. I’M DISTURBED AND SAD
THAT WE STILL HAVE TO HAVE
THESE CONVERSATIONS. SEEMS OUTDATED.
DOESN’T SEEM REAL. THAT WE STILL HAVE TO DISCUSS
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. I READILY ACKNOWLEDGE THAT
WE’VE MADE A LOT OF PROGRESS OVER THE YEARS, BUT NOT ENOUGH, AND PARTICULARLY ABOUT
THIS SPECIFIC ISSUE. EVEN THOUGH I’M SAD WE’RE STILL
HAVING THESE DISCUSSIONS, I’M ALSO VERY PLEASED
TO BE STANDING HERE AS A SURVIVOR OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND A SURVIVOR OF GUN VIOLENCE
AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. IN 1992, I WAS LEFT FOR DEAD
BY MY THEN-HUSBAND. I AM PLEASED BECAUSE HE DID NOT
INTEND FOR ME TO LIVE AFTER THE 3 SHOTS TO MY BODY. I KNOW HE DIDN’T
INTEND FOR ME TO LIVE BECAUSE FOR THE 13-PLUS YEARS
THAT WE WERE MARRIED, HE MADE SURE THAT I KNEW
HE AND THE GUN HAD TOTAL CONTROL OVER ME, AND THAT HE COULD
KILL ME IN SECONDS. GUNS WERE THE TOOL. I WANT TO BE VERY
CLEAR ABOUT THAT. THERE WERE OTHER MECHANISMS,
BUT GUNS WERE THE TOOL THAT HE USED TO MAINTAIN
AND KEEP CONTROL OVER ME. THOUGH THERE WERE OTHER FORMS OF
PHYSICAL AND EMOTIONAL VIOLENCE, THE GUN REPRESENTED
SO MUCH MORE. IT WAS MORE POTENT
THAN HANDS AND WORDS. HE KEPT THE GUN
ON THE REFRIGERATOR AS A REMINDER OF THAT CONTROL. ON AT LEAST TWO OCCASIONS IN
THE EARLY PART OF OUR MARRIAGE, IT WAS PULLED ON ME TO REMIND ME
OF ITS POWER, AND HIS. I WAS AWARE THAT WITH
THE EASE OF A TRIGGER PULL THAT I COULD BE DEAD. IT WAS ABSOLUTELY TERRIFYING
ON MANY OCCASIONS. WHEN HE SHOT ME, I HAD BEEN GONE
FOR ALMOST 8 MONTHS. I WANT TO BE
VERY CLEAR ABOUT THAT. I WAS ALREADY GONE.
I HAD LEFT. OVER THE YEARS, I HAD BEGUN
TO EVENTUALLY UNDERSTAND WHAT WAS HAPPENING. I BEGAN TO UNDERSTAND THAT
THE BERATING AND THE BATTERY WERE NOT A NORMAL WAY OF LIFE. AND FRANKLY, AT THE TIME,
I ALSO DID IT FOR MY SON’S SAKE. I BEGAN TO WATCH THE IMPACT
THAT IT WAS HAVING ON HIM. THE VIOLENCE. THE CATALYST FOR ME
UNDERSTANDING THAT DANGER
EVEN MORE WAS THE DAY THAT
THE GUN WAS USED TO INSTILL FURTHER FEAR
AND EXERT CONTROL OVER MY SON. ON THIS PARTICULAR DAY,
I LEFT WORK IN A FRENZY BECAUSE THE SCHOOL HAD
CALLED US EACH INDIVIDUALLY TO LET US KNOW THAT
MY SON WAS IN TROUBLE. HE WAS 13 AT THE TIME
AND HIS GRADES WERE FAILING. I KNEW THAT MY HUSBAND
WOULD BE RAGING AND THAT IF I DID NOT
GET THERE IN TIME, MY SON COULD BE HURT
OR EVEN WORSE. I ENTERED THE HOUSE
AT THE MOMENT THAT HE WAS LEVELING
THE GUN AT DAVID. AS I TRIED TO INTERVENE,
THE FIREARM WAS TURNED ON ME, AND AS HE TURNED AROUND,
HE HELD THE GUN ON ME AND TOLD–HELD THE GUN ON ME AND TOLD MY SON
THAT IF HE BROUGHT ANY MORE BAD GRADES
IN THE HOME, THAT I WOULD BE KILLED. THAT SOLIDIFIED FOR ME WHAT I WAS ALREADY CONTEMPLATING–
LEAVING. [EXHALES] WE SNUCK AWAY AND I REFUSED
TO LET ANYBODY KNOW WHERE WE WERE GOING,
OR TO HELP US, AND I THINK YOU ALL
UNDERSTAND WHY. WELL, HE FOUND US,
AS HE SAID HE ALWAYS WOULD, JUST DAYS LATER, AND BEGAN A HARASSMENT
AND STALKING CAMPAIGN. JUST A FEW WEEKS LATER,
HE USED THAT VERY SAME GUN TO KIDNAP ME AT GUNPOINT. HE HELD ME FOR 4 HOURS. DURING THAT TIME, HE BEGGED ME
TO KILL HIM, HE THREATENED TO KILL HIMSELF, AND THREATENED TO KILL
BOTH OF US. HE BONDED OUT–HE WAS CAUGHT. I WAS ABLE TO GET AWAY.
HE WAS CAUGHT. HE BONDED OUT OF JAIL AND I GOT MY FIRST PROTECTION ORDER. AGAIN, A FEW WEEKS LATER,
HE FOUND ME, AS HE ALWAYS SAID HE WOULD. HE ALWAYS SAID HE WOULD FIND ME AND HE LIVED THAT OUT AND CONTINUED TO STALK ME. SOMEHOW, HE WAS ABLE
TO ACQUIRE ANOTHER FIREARM AND SHOT ME, AS HE FREQUENTLY SAID HE WOULD. MY SON WAS SPARED
AND I’LL NEVER KNOW WHY, BUT MY HUSBAND WENT ON THE RUN. 4 MONTHS LATER, HE WAS FOUND, AND TURNED THE GUN ON HIMSELF
AND COMMITTED SUICIDE. THAT WAS ALSO A VERY SAD DAY. WE ALL KNOW THAT THIS
IS NOT AN UNCOMMON STORY. THESE SCENARIOS
ARE PLAYED OUT– THE STALKING, THE SHOOTINGS– EVERY DAY IN THIS NATION
FOR OTHER SURVIVORS. THAT’S WHY I TELL MY STORY,
BECAUSE I LIVED. I DISTINCTLY REMEMBER
ONE OF MY EARLY ACTIVITIES WAS PARTICIPATING IN
A SURVIVORS’ GROUP. IT WAS THEN THAT I REALIZED
THAT I WAS NOT THE ONLY ONE WHO HAD ENDURED
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, AND SURPRISINGLY, NOT THE ONLY
ONE WHO HAD ENDURED GUN VIOLENCE IN THE COMBINATION
WITH DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. SINCE THAT TIME,
I’VE BEEN PRIVILEGED, BECAUSE I’M ALIVE
AND DRIVEN TO WORK AND VOLUNTEER
IN DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. SO, WHEN I TELL MY STORY,
I’M OFTEN QUESTIONED. WHY DIDN’T I EVER TAKE THE GUN? WHY DIDN’T I USE
THE GUN AGAINST HIM? AND WHY DIDN’T I GET A GUN? FOR THOSE THAT DON’T UNDERSTAND THE DYNAMICS OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, THAT MAKES PERFECT SENSE. IT SEEMS SO LOGICAL,
BUT IT’S NOT. THE FEAR IS THE TRUTH.
THE TRUTH IS A GUN’S PRESENCE, WHEN THERE IS
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, CAN BE DANGEROUS FOR EVERYONE, NOT JUST THE PERPETRATOR
AND NOT JUST THE VICTIM. THE IDEA THAT A VICTIM
SHOULD REMOVE A FIREARM IS AN IDEA THAT
HAS NO GROUNDING IN THE REALITY
OF THESE SITUATIONS. NOR THE IDEA THAT A VICTIM
SHOULD ARM THEMSELVES TO PREVENT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. WHEN WE’RE TALKING ABOUT
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
AND GUN VIOLENCE AND THAT INTERSECTION, AS WE OFTEN TALK
ABOUT THE LETHALITY AND THE MURDERS THAT OCCUR, WE MUST ALSO ADDRESS THE FACT THAT GUNS ARE USED
AND POWERFUL TOOLS IN SO MANY OTHER WAYS
IN DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. THERE’S NOTHING MORE FRIGHTENING
THAN KNOWING THAT THERE’S A GUN IN THE HOME WHEN YOU’RE A VICTIM
OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. WE ALL KNOW THAT THOSE WHO ABUSE
AND HAVE ACCESS TO WEAPONS ARE 5 TO–8 TIMES MORE LIKELY
TO KILL THEIR INTIMATE PARTNERS IN A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE SITUATION
THAN THOSE WITHOUT FIREARMS. I’M CITING STATS THAT HAVE
ALREADY BEEN CITED, BUT, THEY’RE IMPORTANT TO REMEMBER. IT IS MY HOPE
AND, IN FACT, MY INTENTION, THAT AS LONG AS I CAN
SPEAK UP AS A SURVIVOR AND SPEAK OUT AS AN ADVOCATE AND DO WHAT I CAN
TO LIMIT ACCESS, REMOVE FIREARMS FROM THOSE
WHO COMMIT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, I WILL. I WILL DO THAT TO ENSURE
THAT ALL WHO INTERVENE ON BEHALF OF VICTIMS
AND SURVIVORS UNDERSTAND THE WAYS
IN WHICH GUNS MAKE VICTIMS MORE SUSCEPTIBLE
TO VIOLENCE AND DEATH. AS A NATION,
WE MUST DO SOMETHING THAT PROVIDES SAFETY
AND SUPPORTS FOR VICTIMS WHO ARE SUBJECT TO DOMESTIC
VIOLENCE INVOLVING FIREARMS. WE MUST PROMOTE POLICIES
AND PRACTICES NATIONWIDE THAT SUPPORT VICTIMS AND PROVIDE
PROTECTIONS FROM GUN VIOLENCE. FOR THOSE WHO ENGAGE IN THE
CONVERSATION ABOUT GUN RIGHTS, THEY QUITE OFTEN LOSE SIGHT
OF THE RIGHTS OF VICTIMS AND THOSE IMPACTED
BY GUN VIOLENCE IN THE CONTEXT OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. WE INTEND TO DO ALL THAT WE CAN
TO ENSURE THAT THESE VICTIMS ARE NEVER LOST
IN THOSE CONVERSATIONS. YOU AND I KNOW THAT
THE THREAT OF GUNS WHEN DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
IS PRESENT IS REAL. YOU AND I KNOW THAT THE THREAT TO ENTIRE FAMILIES
AND COMMUNITIES WHEN THERE’S AN INTERSECTION OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND FIREARMS IS REAL. WE MUST WORK TO HELP
OTHERS UNDERSTAND AND BE MOTIVATED TO ASSIST
IN MAKING CHANGE. I AND THE NATIONAL COALITION
AGAINST DOMESTIC VIOLENCE IS COMMITTED TO WORKING
WITH OUR ALLIES, PARTICIPATING IN DIALOGUE,
AND DO WHAT WE CAN TO EDUCATE AND HELP CHANGE
LAWS AND PRACTICES THAT ALLOW FOR THIS SCOURGE
TO EXIST. WE WILL CONTINUE TO FIGHT
FOR POLICIES AND GUIDELINES THAT ENSURE VICTIMS ARE HEARD AND ABUSERS ARE
HELD ACCOUNTABLE, AND WE WILL HAVE
MADE IT SAFE FOR VICTIMS, FAMILIES,
AND COMMUNITIES. THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] HANSON: THANK YOU, RUTH.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR COURAGE. THANK YOU FOR YOUR STRENGTH. THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE
AND YOUR CONSTANT COMMITMENT TO USING YOUR STORY
AND USING YOUR LIFE TO MAKE SO MUCH POSITIVE IMPACT ON SO MANY OTHER PEOPLE’S LIVES,
SO, THANK YOU SO MUCH. SO, PLEASE JOIN ME IN
THANKING RUTH ONE MORE TIME. [APPLAUSE] YOU KNOW, I THINK IT’S IMPORTANT
THAT WE TALK ABOUT, YOU KNOW, WE TALK
ABOUT THE INDIVIDUALS AND TALK ABOUT, YOU KNOW,
WHAT THE IMPACT OF THIS WORK IS THAT WE DO, AND FOR THOSE OF US THAT ARE
PROFESSIONALS IN THE FIELD, YOU KNOW, CONNECTING
TO PEOPLE’S LIVES IS ALWAYS IMPORTANT
TO DO ALL THE TIME. AND I’M THRILLED TO BE–
THAT WE’RE JOINED BY A PANEL OF INCREDIBLE EXPERTS AND WITH INCREDIBLE
AMOUNT OF PASSION. WE’VE GOT–1, 2, 3, 5,
7 PEOPLE, I THINK, SO, WE’VE GOT
A BIG PANEL OF FOLKS THAT ARE COMING UP TO TALK, SO, WANT TO INTRODUCE
DARREN MITCHELL, WHO’S HERE SOMEWHERE. WHO’S A LONGTIME COLLEAGUE
OF OURS. HE’S BEEN A CONSULTANT
WITH OVW AND OTHERS FOR, I THINK,
AT LEAST 16 YEARS LOOKING AT THE ISSUE OF
INTERSECTION OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND FIREARMS AND CHILD CUSTODY
AND A MILLION OTHER THINGS, AND DARREN WILL BE
INTRODUCING THE PANEL AND BRINGING THEM UP,
SO, DARREN. MITCHELL: THANK YOU, BEA.
[APPLAUSE] THANK YOU.
GOOD AFTERNOON, EVERYONE. I’M JUST SO INSPIRED
AND THRILLED TO SHARE A STAGE WITH YOU, RUTH, AND WITH YOU,
BEA, AS WELL. IT’S REALLY–IT’S AMAZING
TO HEAR YOUR STORY AND TO–AND THANK YOU
FOR SO POWERFULLY SHOWING US WHY WE’RE
DOING THIS WORK, WHY IT’S IMPORTANT
FOR US AS PROFESSIONALS, ADVOCATES, AND OTHERS, AND ALSO FOR US AS A NATION TO DO BETTER AND DO MORE TO PROTECT VICTIMS,
CHILDREN, AND OTHERS ON THIS–TOO FAR?
TOO CLOSE? THANK YOU. I’M GONNA USE GLASSES AS WELL. SO, I ALSO–I REALLY–
I MUST THANK THE U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE AND THE OFFICE ON
VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN. I’VE BEEN–AS BEA SAID,
I’VE BEEN DOING THIS FOR ABOUT 16 YEARS, THAT I–AND THERE ARE SEVERAL
OTHER PEOPLE IN THE ROOM WHO I’VE WORKED WITH
FOR THAT LONG ON THIS ISSUE AS WELL, AND YOUR SUPPORT FOR THIS WORK HAS JUST BEEN UNWAVERING
AND INCREDIBLY STRONG FOR A VERY LONG TIME,
SO, THANK YOU. IT’S MY PLEASURE ALSO, I’LL BE
INTRODUCING THE PANEL IN JUST A FEW MINUTES, AND I
HAVE A VERY STRONG TEMPTATION TO JUST STEP ASIDE
AND LET THEM TALK, BECAUSE AS YOU KNOW,
WE’VE ASSEMBLED, REALLY, THE GREATEST THINKERS
ON THIS ISSUE, BOTH RESEARCHERS, PEOPLE
WHO HAVE WORKED IN THE FIELD IN A PROFESSIONAL WAY,
AND OTHERS WHO HAVE A LOT OF
VERY IMPORTANT THINGS TO SHARE WITH US ALL. BUT WE ALL AGREED AS A GROUP
THAT BEFORE WE DID THAT, WE WOULD SPEND JUST A COUPLE
OF MINUTES TALKING ABOUT THE LEGAL LANDSCAPE THAT ALL
THIS WORK IS TAKING PLACE IN, BECAUSE AFTER ALL,
WE’RE HERE TO TALK ABOUT IMPLEMENTATION OF
THE EXISTING LAWS AND WE WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT
EVERYONE HAS A GOOD SENSE OF WHAT THESE LAWS ARE. AND YOU SAW FROM, IF YOU LOOK
AT THE COVER OF OUR PROGRAM, OUR THEME TODAY IS “SAFER
FAMILIES AND SAFER COMMUNITIES.” AND I THINK ALL 3 OF YOU
REALLY SHARED HOW IMPORTANT IT IS TO BE
THINKING ABOUT THE SURVIVORS, THINKING ABOUT THE CHILDREN
OF SURVIVORS, BUT ALSO THE OTHERS WHO ARE
IMPACTED BY GUN VIOLENCE– THE FIRST RESPONDERS,
THE INTERVENERS, THE BYSTANDERS, AND SO, THAT’S WHY WE’RE
TALKING ABOUT FAMILIES AND BROADER COMMUNITIES, AND WE ALSO HAVE
A PARTICULAR FOCUS ON WHAT FOLKS CAN DO
AT THE COMMUNITY LEVEL. WE’RE NOT TALKING ABSTRACTLY ABOUT APPLICATION
OF THE FEDERAL LAW AND HOW YOU INTERPRET
THE VARIOUS PROVISIONS
OF THE FEDERAL LAW. WE’RE TALKING ABOUT HOW FOLKS FROM ALL THE
IMPORTANT DISCIPLINES AND THE PUBLIC CAN HELP
MAKE THEIR COMMUNITY SAFER FOR FAMILIES, FOR CHILDREN,
AND FOR OTHERS. SO, WITH THAT, I WILL START– LOOKS LIKE THIS IS
GONNA WORK GREAT– A VERY BRIEF OVERVIEW
OF THESE LAWS. WE COULD, OF COURSE, SPEND THE
NEXT 3 HOURS TALKING ABOUT THEM. I PROMISE WE WON’T.
THERE ARE SEVERAL PEOPLE IN THIS ROOM WHO COULD EASILY
SPEAK FOR 3 HOURS VERY INTELLIGENTLY ABOUT THEM. I’M NOT THAT PERSON.
WE’RE GONNA JUMP RIGHT INTO IT. ON THE FEDERAL SIDE OF THINGS, WE’RE GONNA TAKE
A VERY BRIEF LOOK AT TWO IMPORTANT LAWS,
SETS OF LAWS THAT ARE ON THE BOOKS. ONE IS UNDER THE FEDERAL
GUN CONTROL ACT. THE OTHER IS THE BRADY HANDGUN
VIOLENCE PREVENTION ACT, OR THE BRADY ACT,
WHICH PREVENTS PURCHASES OF FIREARMS BY PEOPLE
WHO ARE PROHIBITED. THE GUN CONTROL ACT WAS
DEVELOPED–WAS PASSED IN 1968. IT’S A LAW THAT CLASSIFIES
SEVERAL GROUPS OF SO-CALLED PROHIBITED PERSONS, BECAUSE OF THEIR STATUS,
MOSTLY BECAUSE OF CRIMES THEY COMMITTED
OR HAVE BEEN– CONVICTED OF OR BEEN ACCUSED OF CANNOT HAVE ACCESS TO FIREARMS
OR AMMUNITION. IN 1994, WHEN THE VIOLENCE
AGAINST WOMEN ACT WAS PASSED, THAT LAW WAS EXPANDED
TO INCLUDE FOR THE FIRST TIME FOLKS WHO ARE SUBJECT
TO PROTECTION ORDERS, BOTH CIVIL AND CRIMINAL
PROTECTION ORDERS THAT MEET CERTAIN
QUALIFYING CHARACTERISTICS, WHICH WE’LL TALK ABOUT
IN JUST A SECOND. IN 1996, ONE OF OUR
GREAT LEADERS IN THIS AREA, FRANK LAUTENBERG, A SENATOR, INTRODUCED THE LAUTENBERG
AMENDMENT, WHICH WAS PASSED BY CONGRESS TO EXPAND THIS LIST
OF PROHIBITED PERSONS TO INCLUDE, FOR THE FIRST TIME,
MISDEMEANANTS, PEOPLE CONVICTED OF
MISDEMEANOR CRIMES, SPECIFICALLY CRIMES OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, WHICH WE’LL TALK ABOUT
IN A MOMENT AS WELL. THESE ARE BOTH FOUND
IN THE UNITED STATES CODE, CRIMINAL CODE SECTION. IN ADDITION, WE LIKE
TO POINT OUT, THERE ARE PROVISIONS
THAT PROHIBIT PEOPLE, THAT CRIMINALIZE THE TRANSFER
OR THE SALE OF FIREARMS TO PEOPLE
WHO ARE SO PROHIBITED IF THEY DO SO
IN A KNOWING FASHION. SO, FIRST, LET’S LOOK AT WHAT
WE SOMETIMES CALL 922(g)(8). IT’S THE PROTECTION ORDER
PART OF THE STATUTE. IT PROHIBITS WHAT I SAID WERE
QUALIFYING PROTECTION ORDERS. THE LAW DOESN’T
CALL THEM QUALIFYING, BUT IT DOES SET FORTH
A SERIES OF REQUIREMENTS THAT MUST BE MET
IN ORDER FOR THOSE ORDERS TO BRING THIS FEDERAL LAW
TO BEAR ON A PARTICULAR PERSON. I’M NOT GONNA GO THROUGH
THE DETAILS ON IT, BUT THERE’S
DUE PROCESS PROTECTIONS. THE ORDER HAS TO HAVE BEEN
ISSUED AFTER HEARING FOR AN OPPORTUNITY TO BE HEARD. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN? WHAT KIND OF ORDERS
ARE EXCLUDED? EX PARTE ORDERS. IF BOTH PARTIES AREN’T
PRESENT AT THE HEARING, OR AT LEAST THERE’S NOT
A HEARING AVAILABLE AT WHICH A PERSON
CAN PARTICIPATE, THIS FEDERAL LAW DOES NOT
INCLUDE THOSE TYPES OF ORDERS. IN ADDITION TO THAT, THERE’S
A RELATIONSHIP REQUIREMENT. INTIMATE PARTNERS,
CHILDREN OF THE ABUSER, AND A COUPLE OF OTHER THINGS THAT I WON’T GO
INTO ANY DETAIL ON, BUT THEY’RE ALSO–THIS LAW
WAS VERY CLEVERLY WRITTEN– KNOWING THAT MANY
PROTECTION ORDERS, ESPECIALLY IN THE CIVIL ARENA,
ARE ISSUED BASED ON CONSENT
OF THE PARTIES, UPON AGREEMENT OF THE PARTIES, AND SOMETIMES, MANY TIMES,
JUDGES DON’T MAKE SPECIFIC FINDINGS THAT
ABUSE HAS TAKEN PLACE. AND SO, THE LAW SAYS THERE
EITHER NEEDS TO BE A FINDING THAT THE DEFENDANT POSES
A CREDIBLE THREAT TO THE PHYSICAL SAFETY
OF THE PETITIONER OR IF THERE IS NO SUCH FINDING, THAT IT PROHIBITS
CERTAIN CONDUCT. AND SO, WHAT DOES THIS MEAN? CONSENT ORDERS. VIRTUALLY ALL THE CONSENT ORDERS
ACROSS THE COUNTRY OR ORDERS ENTERED BY AGREEMENT ARE COVERED BY THIS FEDERAL LAW AND A RESPONDENT
TO SUCH AN ORDER IS GONNA BE IN VIOLATION OF IT IF HE POSSESSES A WEAPON. THE LAUTENBERG AMENDMENT,
AS WE MENTIONED EARLIER A COUPLE TIMES NOW,
THE MISDEMEANOR CRIME PART OF THIS LAW,
IT IS A STATUTE THAT COVERS CERTAIN
MISDEMEANOR CRIMES THAT CAN BE TRIBAL, STATE,
OR FEDERAL MISDEMEANORS THAT HAVE
CERTAIN CHARACTERISTICS,
AND I’VE LISTED THEM HERE. THE ELEMENTS ARE THAT EITHER
THERE HAS TO HAVE BEEN THE USE OR THE THREATENED USE OF PHYSICAL FORCE AS ONE OF
THE ELEMENTS IN THE CRIME, OR THERE HAS TO HAVE BEEN
A THREATENED USE OF A DEADLY WEAPON
AS PART OF THE CRIME. MANY STATES HAVE
REVISED THEIR STATUTES TO ENSURE THAT
THESE CRIMES ARE COVERED BY THE FEDERAL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
FIREARMS STATUTE. IN ADDITION, THERE’S
A RELATIONSHIP REQUIREMENT. YOU SEE IT’S VERY LONG.
IT’S VERY COMPLICATED. SOME CASES GET DOWN
TO DID THE RESPONDENT HAVE HIS TOOTHBRUSH
AT THE VICTIM’S HOUSE SO THAT THEY WERE SIMILARLY
SITUATED TO SPOUSES? WE’RE NOT GONNA GO
INTO ALL THOSE DETAILS, JUST TO SAY THAT THERE IS
A RELATIONSHIP REQUIREMENT. IT IS SUPPOSED TO BE ABOUT
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, INTIMATE PARTNER VIOLENCE. IF YOU HAVE BEEN CONVICTED
OF ONE OF THESE CRIMES FOR YOUR LIFETIME,
YOU ARE NOW PROHIBITED UNDER FEDERAL LAW FROM
PURCHASING OR POSSESSING
WEAPONS, UNLESS YOU GET IT EXPUNGED, WHICH IS AVAILABLE
IN SOME STATES. THAT’S THE FEDERAL LAW. THAT’S THE PROHIBITION
ON POSSESSION AND PURCHASE. THE BRADY ACT STOPS PURCHASES. IT’S A LAW THAT WAS ENACTED TO ENABLE LICENSED
DEALERS OF FIREARMS TO CONDUCT BACKGROUND CHECKS
THROUGH THE FBI, AND THE DEPUTY ATTORNEY GENERAL
MENTIONED THE NICS SYSTEM, THE NATIONAL INSTANT CRIMINAL
BACKGROUND CHECK SYSTEM, THAT DOES THIS CHECK. IF YOU’RE SUBJECT TO A STATE
OR FEDERAL PROHIBITOR, YOU CAN’T BUY YOUR GUN,
AND WE KNOW THAT’S A VERY EFFECTIVE SYSTEM FOR LICENSED DEALERS, FOR SITUATIONS IN WHICH
THE BACKGROUND CHECK IS ACTUALLY CONDUCTED. AND A LOT OF THE STRATEGIES
THAT WE TALK WITH
ABOUT COMMUNITIES IS HOW YOU GET THE INFORMATION TO THE PEOPLE WHO
NEED TO HAVE IT IN ORDER TO MAKE THOSE
PROHIBITIONS ON PURCHASES. NOW, WHAT ABOUT ON THE STATE
AND TRIBAL SIDE OF THINGS? MANY, MANY STATES AND TRIBES
HAVE SIMILAR YET DIFFERENT LAWS ON THE BOOKS
AROUND THESE ISSUES. SOME OF THEM
ARE ACTUALLY MORE– ARE BROADER IN COVERAGE
THAN THE FEDERAL LAW. PLUS, THEY HAVE
SPECIFIC DIRECTIVES TO COURTS,
TO LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS OVER HOW THEY SHOULD
BE RESPONDING IN SITUATIONS WHERE
THERE ARE FIREARMS IN DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CASES. SO, WE’RE GONNA LOOK
AT A COUPLE OF THESE. CIVIL PROTECTION ORDERS
AND RELATED STATUTES, MISDEMEANOR CRIME,
DV CRIME STATUTES, AND LAW ENFORCEMENT
AUTHORITY STATUTES. JUST A BRIEF OVERVIEW. GONNA START WITH
SOME TRIBAL LAW. FOLKS SHOULD UNDERSTAND THAT MANY OF THE TRIBES
AROUND THE COUNTRY HAVE ENACTED POWERFUL LAWS
ON THIS ISSUE. I HAVE JUST A FEW LISTED HERE. THE TULALIP TRIBE, NEZ PERCE, EASTERN BAND OF
CHEROKEE INDIANS, CONFEDERATED SALISH
AND KOOTENAI TRIBES, HOOPA VALLEY TRIBE,
AND SITKA TRIBE IN ALASKA. ALL HAVE ENACTED STATUTES THAT ALLOW JUDGES TO ORDER
DISPOSSESSION OF GUNS OR SURRENDER OF GUNS THAT
HAVE AUTOMATIC PROHIBITIONS THAT KICK IN WHEN
AN ORDER OF PROTECTION IS ISSUED AGAINST YOU,
THE FEDERAL LAW DOES. SO, THERE ARE TOOLS
IN THE TOOL KIT FOR FOLKS IN INDIAN COUNTRY
TO DISARM ABUSERS AND PROTECT VICTIMS, CHILDREN,
AND OTHER PEOPLE. I’M GONNA JUST BRIEFLY
GO THROUGH THESE NOW. SO, I WANTED TO GIVE YOU
A SENSE, BECAUSE ONE OF OUR PRESENTERS,
DR. APRIL ZEOLI, IS GONNA TALK IN
A LITTLE MORE DETAIL ABOUT IMPLEMENTATION
OF STATE LAWS, BUT JUST SO YOU GET A SENSE, AROUND THE COUNTRY,
THERE ARE MANY STATES THAT HAVE INCLUDED
EXPLICIT STATUTES THAT HAVE EXPLICIT
COURT AUTHORITY TO PROHIBIT POSSESSION
OR PURCHASE OF GUNS WHEN A CIVIL PROTECTION ORDER
HAS BEEN ISSUED. THERE’S ALSO WHAT WE SOMETIMES
CALL IMPLICIT AUTHORITY. MANY OF YOU ARE FAMILIAR
WITH CATCHALL PROVISIONS IN PROTECTION ORDER STATUTES, THAT THE COURT
CAN ISSUE RELIEF, OTHER RELIEF NOT OTHERWISE
ENUMERATED IN THE STATUTE, TO PROTECT THE VICTIM
AND CHILDREN IN THESE CASES. THERE ARE SOME PLACES–
OREGON AND KENTUCKY ARE TWO THAT STAND OUT–
WHERE THEY’VE USED THAT IMPLICIT AUTHORITY
TO DEVELOP VERY ROBUST SYSTEMS TO DISARM ABUSERS WHO HAVE HAD CIVIL PROTECTION ORDERS
ISSUED AGAINST THEM. THERE ARE FEWER COURTS THAT
HAVE SPECIFIC AUTHORITY FOR JUDGES TO ORDER
SURRENDER OF GUNS AS OPPOSED TO
“YOU CAN’T POSSESS GUNS, YOU CAN’T PURCHASE GUNS.” IN THESE STATES, IT’S EITHER DISCRETIONARY ON THE PART
OF THE JUDGE OR MANDATORY IN SOME STATES. THE COURT CAN SAY, “YOU SHALL
SURRENDER YOUR WEAPONS TO X LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCY
BY X TIME.” VERY POWERFUL LAWS
THAT WE’RE WORKING ON HELPING WITH IMPLEMENTATION OF
IN MANY DIFFERENT WAYS. MISDEMEANOR CRIMES
ARE ALSO COVERED BY SEVERAL STATE LAWS. NOT VERY MANY, BUT
A FEW HAVE LAWS THAT MOSTLY MIRROR
THE FEDERAL LAW. AND FINALLY, I MENTIONED
THE LAW ENFORCEMENT RESPONSE, THERE’S A HANDFUL
OF STATES THAT HAVE SPECIFICALLY GIVEN AUTHORIZED
LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS TO EITHER ON
A DISCRETIONARY BASIS OR ON A MANDATORY BASIS
TAKE GUNS AT THE SCENE OF
A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CRIME. NOW, AS I THINK DAVE THOMAS WILL
TALK ABOUT IN A FEW MINUTES, THERE ARE LOTS OF SOURCES
OF AUTHORITY TO DO THAT IN A PARTICULAR SITUATION. IT DOESN’T NECESSARILY
HAVE TO BE EXPLICIT IN YOUR LAW IN THIS WAY, BUT JUST TO GIVE YOU A SENSE
THAT THERE ARE SOME PLACES WHERE LEGISLATORS HAVE DECIDED
THAT THEY WANT TO GIVE LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS
THOSE POWERS. SO, THIS IS OUR BACKGROUND
ON THE LEGAL LANDSCAPE AROUND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
AND FIREARMS. I’M NOW GONNA INTRODUCE
THE PANEL, AND I THINK WE’RE GONNA
HAVE THEM ALL COME UP AT ONCE. PLEASE, AND I’LL INTRODUCE
YOU ONE AT A TIME AS YOU COME UP TO SPEAK. [APPLAUSE] SO, OUR PANEL IS AMAZING.
I’M NOT GONNA INTRODUCE THEM BY READING THEIR BIOS. YOU HAVE THEIR BIOS
IN THE HANDOUT THAT WAS ON YOUR CHAIR. I’M JUST GONNA SAY A COUPLE OF
WORDS FOR EACH OF THEM. IN THE FIRST–OUR FIRST PANELIST
IS DR. JACQUELINE CAMPBELL. SO, BEFORE YOU GET SEATED, JACKIE, YOU MAY WANT
TO HEAD ON UP HERE. THANK YOU. AND DR. CAMPBELL
ALMOST DOESN’T NEED ANY SORT OF INTRODUCTION
TO THE FOLKS IN THIS ROOM. AS PRETTY MUCH, I’M SURE,
ALL OF YOU KNOW, SHE IS OUR PREEMINENT
THINKER AND RESEARCHER ON LETHALITY. SHE’S A DEVELOPER OF
THE DANGER ASSESSMENT TOOL, WHICH IS USED INTERNATIONALLY. SHE JUST CAME BACK
FROM SRI LANKA TO TALK ABOUT HER WORK, AND WE
CAN THINK OF NO ONE BETTER TO TALK ABOUT
THE PUBLIC HEALTH IMPERATIVE TO THE WORK THAT WE’RE DOING. SO, I INTRODUCE YOU
TO DR. JACQUELINE CAMPBELL. [APPLAUSE] CAMPBELL: [NO AUDIO] [CHUCKLES] DON’T TOUCH IT.
DO NOT TOUCH MIC. I AM DELIGHTED TO BE HERE. I HAVE INDEED DONE
A LOT OF RESEARCH ON THIS ISSUE
FOR A VERY LONG TIME. I REMEMBER VERY WELL
THE FIRST VAWA ACT, THE WORK THAT MANY OF US
DID IN THIS ROOM ON THE BRADY BILL
AND SUPPORTING IT AND HOW IMPORTANT THAT WAS. SO, AS HAS BEEN MENTIONED, WHEN WOMEN ARE KILLED
IN THIS COUNTRY, THE MAJORITY ARE KILLED
BY A HUSBAND, BOYFRIEND, OR EX-HUSBAND, EX-BOYFRIEND, AND THAT’S 9 TIMES THE RATE THAT ARE KILLED BY STRANGERS. AND THAT’S ONE OF THE THINGS
OFTENTIMES THE PUBLIC IS NOT REALLY AWARE OF. AND 5% TO 8% OF MEN ARE KILLED
BY INTIMATE PARTNERS. 54% OF THAT
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HOMICIDE IS COMMITTED WITH GUNS. WHEN WOMEN ARE KILLED
BY A PARTNER, ABOUT 70% OF THEM HAVE
BEEN PHYSICALLY ABUSED BY THAT PARTNER
BEFORE THEY WERE KILLED. IF A MALE IS KILLED
BY A PARTNER, ABOUT 75% OF THOSE CASES
WAS ALSO PRECEDED BY DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
AGAINST THE FEMALE. AND IMPORTANTLY,
HAS BEEN MENTIONED BY BEA, THAT WOMEN ARE FAR MORE LIKELY
TO BE THE VICTIMS OF HOMICIDE-SUICIDE
BY A PARTNER. IT’S ABOUT 29% OF THE DOMESTIC
VIOLENCE HOMICIDES OF A WOMAN ARE FOLLOWED BY THE SUICIDE
OF THE MALE PARTNER, AND 88% TO 94% OF THOSE
HOMICIDE-SUICIDES ARE DONE WITH GUNS. AND WHEN CHILDREN ARE KILLED
IN DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HOMICIDE INCIDENTS, IT’S EVEN HIGHER THAT THERE’S
A PROPORTION THAT ARE WITH GUNS. A COUPLE OF THESE GRAPHICS
ARE FROM EVERYTOWN. THEY DID SOME GRAPHICS FOR ME WHEN I TESTIFIED BEFORE
A SENATE SUBCOMMITTEE ON ONE OF THESE LAWS
TO STRENGTHEN OUR FEDERAL LAWS–
GUNS WITH PROTECTIVE ORDERS. SO, AGAIN, WHO SHOOTS WOMEN? MORE THAN HALF ARE KILLED
BY INTIMATE PARTNERS OR FAMILY MEMBERS. WHEN WOMEN ARE KILLED
BY INTIMATE PARTNERS, MORE THAN HALF ARE
KILLED WITH GUNS. AND ONE OF THE IMPORTANT THINGS
TO THINK ABOUT IN TERMS OF POLICY, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT
HAS HAPPENED OVER TIME, ONE OF THE GOOD NEWS STORIES, IS THAT WE IN THIS COUNTRY
HAVE DECREASED DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HOMICIDES, AND A LOT OF THAT DECREASE, IN FACT, THE MAJORITY
OF THAT DECREASE, HAS BEEN RELATED TO GUN REMOVAL OR DENIAL OF POSSESSION OF GUNS BY KNOWN
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE OFFENDERS, AS WE’VE TALKED ABOUT
THE LAWS–WHOOPS. I WANTED TO BRIEFLY
MENTION THE RESEARCH, THE NATIONAL, 11 CITY
AND ONE RURAL AREA FEMICIDE STUDY. WHEN WE WERE
TRYING TO DETERMINE WHAT WERE THE RISK FACTORS, OVER AND ABOVE
PRIOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, WE KNEW PRIOR
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE WAS THE NUMBER-ONE RISK FACTOR
FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HOMICIDE. BUT IT WAS WHICH ABUSED WOMEN
WERE MOST AT RISK, AND WHAT WERE THE FACTORS
THAT PUT THEM AT RISK? AND THIS WAS FUNDED
BY THE ORIGINAL VAWA FUNDING THIS RESEARCH. IT’S BEEN PUBLISHED–THERE’S
SEVERAL STUDIES ABOUT IT. AMERICAN JOURNAL OF
PUBLIC HEALTH IN 2003. AMONGST THE WOMEN
WHO WERE KILLED, AND THIS WAS
A CASE-CONTROLLED STUDY, SO, WE LOOKED AT WOMEN WHO WERE
KILLED BY AN INTIMATE PARTNER IN COMPARISON TO WOMEN WHO WERE
ABUSED BY AN INTIMATE PARTNER IN THOSE SAME CITIES. 65% OF THE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
FEMICIDES, THE ABUSER HAD A FIREARM,
OWNED A FIREARM. NOW, HE MAY NOT HAVE HAD
OFFICIAL REGISTRATION PAPERS FOR THAT FIREARM, BUT
HE FELT LIKE IT WAS HIS. THE ABUSE CONTROLS, 24%. AS RUTH SO ELOQUENTLY
TALKED ABOUT, IN TERMS OF PREVIOUSLY USED
OR THREATENED THE VICTIM WITH A WEAPON
BEFORE SHE WAS KILLED, 55% OF THE FEMICIDES
VERSUS ONLY 5% OF THE OTHER ABUSED WOMEN. FIREARM USE IN THE MOST
SERIOUS INCIDENT, 38% OF THE FEMICIDES. ONLY 1% OF THE ABUSED WOMEN. AND THIS IS DATA IN TERMS OF, AS RUTH ALSO MENTIONED, THE VICTIM OWNING A GUN AND IN THIS CHART,
THE ACTUAL FEMICIDES, THE VICTIMS AND PERPETRATORS
ARE IN RED. THE ATTEMPTED FEMICIDE VICTIMS
ARE IN BLUE. THE YELLOW IS ABUSED
VICTIMS AND OFFENDERS IN THOSE SAME CITIES, AND THE PURPLE IS
NON-ABUSED WOMEN AND OFFENDERS OR PARTNERS IN THOSE SAME CITIES. SO, THE VICTIM
BASICALLY OWNING A GUN NEITHER INCREASED NOR DECREASED
HER RISK. 74% OF THE MEN THAT
ACTUALLY KILLED THEIR PARTNERS SAID THEY OWNED A GUN, OR THEIR PARTNER SAID THEY DID, OR A PROXY. 53% OF THE WOMEN
WHO WERE ALMOST KILLED, THEIR PARTNERS OWNED A GUN. 27% OF ABUSIVE MEN
IN THOSE SAME CITIES WERE GUN OWNERS, AND 13% OF NON-ABUSIVE MEN IN THOSE SAME CITIES
WITH A RANDOM SAMPLE, POPULATION-BASED
GROUP OF PEOPLE, WERE GUN OWNERS. SO, BEING–IF YOU WERE ABUSIVE, TWICE AS MANY ABUSERS OWN GUNS; 4 TIMES AS MANY MEN WHO ALMOST
KILL THEIR PARTNERS OWN GUNS; AND 6 TIMES AS MANY MEN
WHO KILLED THEM. AND THIS IS A BUSY SLIDE. BOTTOM LINE, ABOUT 30–
1/3 OF THE CASES OF BOTH ACTUAL
AND ATTEMPTED FEMICIDE, THOSE OFFENDERS
SHOULD NOT HAVE HAD THAT GUN UNDER EXISTING LAWS
IN THOSE COMMUNITIES. SO, THAT’S A MATTER OF FAILING
TO IMPLEMENT THE LAWS WE HAVE. WE DID FANCY MULTI-VARIANT
LOGISTIC REGRESSION, WHICH I CAN TALK ABOUT,
BUT I WON’T. THE PERPETRATOR GUN OWNERSHIP, THIS IS THE DATA
THAT WAS TALKED ABOUT IN TERMS OF 500% MORE LIKELY
TO BE KILLED THAN OTHER ABUSED WOMEN
IN THOSE SAME CITIES. SHOWING IT GRAPHICALLY,
THIS IS THE ADJUSTED ODDS RATIOS HERE. AGAIN, WE LOOKED
AT WHAT HAPPENED AT THE TIME OF THE INCIDENT. IF A GUN WAS USED, THE WOMAN
WAS 24 TIMES MORE LIKELY TO DIE THAN, AGAIN, THIS IS
IN COMPARISON TO ABUSED WOMEN
IN THE SAME CITIES. HOMICIDE-SUICIDES,
PARTNER GUN OWNERSHIP WAS EVEN A STRONGER RISK FACTOR
THAN WITHOUT SUICIDE. AND BRIEFLY, ONE OF
THE IMPLEMENTATION PROJECTS, ONE OF THE IMPORTANT
HOMICIDE PREVENTION PROJECTS THAT IS BEING DONE
IN OUR COMMUNITIES IS THE L.A.P., WHICH IS
A SHORT FORM OF THE DANGER ASSESSMENT
WHICH POLICE OFFICERS USE AT THE SCENE OF A DOMESTIC
VIOLENCE INCIDENT. THEY USE IT IN ORDER
TO INFORM WOMEN IF THEY’RE AT HIGH RISK
TO BE KILLED BUT ALSO TO GET THOSE WOMEN
AT HIGH RISK AN IMMEDIATE, VOICE-TO-VOICE
CONTACT OVER THE PHONE WITH DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
SERVICE PROVIDERS, OUR VERY IMPORTANT
FIRST LINE OF DEFENSE. AND SO, WE EVALUATED THIS
IN OKLAHOMA. IT WAS FUNDED BY THE NATIONAL
INSTITUTE OF JUSTICE. IT WAS A QUASI-EXPERIMENTAL
EVALUATION. JUST BOTTOM LINE,
BRIEF SNAPSHOT, AND THIS HAS ALSO
BEEN PUBLISHED, WAS THAT USING THE L.A.P.,
THE WOMEN WHO ACTUALLY TALKED TO DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
ADVOCATES AT THE SCENE WERE IN FOLLOW-UP
LESS LIKELY TO BE FREQUENTLY AND SEVERELY ABUSED. SO, THAT’S THAT
INTERVENTION GROUP. THE OTHER THING
THAT’S VERY IMPORTANT IN TERMS OF GUNS IS ONE OF
THE MAJOR PROTECTIVE ACTIONS THAT WAS USED BY WOMEN AND SIGNIFICANTLY
MORE OF THEM USED THIS WHEN THEY WERE INFORMED
THAT GUN OWNERSHIP WAS AN IMPORTANT RISK FACTOR
BY USE OF THE L.A.P., ACTUALLY REMOVED OR HID
THEIR PARTNER’S WEAPONS. NOW, AS RUTH
SO ELOQUENTLY TALKED ABOUT, IT IS ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE
FOR WOMEN TO DO THAT SAFELY, BUT THESE WOMEN
MANAGED TO DO THAT, AND MY POINT HERE IS
THEY SHOULDN’T HAVE HAD TO DO THAT THEMSELVES. THEY SHOULD HAVE HAD LEGAL WAYS TO GET THAT GUN REMOVED WITHOUT THEM HAVING
TO DO IT BY THEMSELVES, WHICH MAY HAVE BEEN
TERRIBLY UNSAFE. BOTTOM LINE HERE IS A QUOTE
FROM ONE OF THE WOMEN IN THE ORIGINAL FEMICIDE STUDY, ONE OF THE MOMS
THAT I INTERVIEWED, AND SHE SAID, “IF YOU’RE GONNA
TALK ABOUT MY DAUGHTER, YOU HAVE TO SAY THIS.” THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] MITCHELL: THANK YOU SO MUCH,
DR. CAMPBELL. NEXT UP, WE HAVE DAVE KECK, COMMISSIONER DAVE KECK
FROM WISCONSIN, AND FOR THOSE OF YOU
WHO KNEW BARBARA HART, WHO WAS MY SUPERVISOR AND MENTOR
FOR MANY YEARS, SHE TALKED ABOUT KEEPERS. DAVE KECK IS A HUGE KEEPER. HE’S A POWERHOUSE. HE’S PASSIONATE
ABOUT THIS ISSUE. HE’S EFFECTIVE ON THE GROUND
ALL ACROSS THE STATE. HE’S HERE TO SHARE
THE AMAZING WORK THEY’VE DONE IN WISCONSIN
ON DISARMING ABUSERS IN CIVIL PROTECTION
ORDER CASES, AND THE COLLABORATION
AND MULTI-DISCIPLINARY EFFORT THAT’S NEEDED TO SUCCEED. KECK: THANK YOU.
[APPLAUSE] THANK YOU, DARREN.
I’M HERE TO TALK ABOUT WISCONSIN’S SAFE ACT, AND I’LL
TELL YOU WHAT THAT IS ABOUT, BUT MOSTLY, I DON’T
HAVE STATISTICS HERE. I’M HERE READY TO TALK TO YOU
ABOUT MY OWN EXPERIENCE AND OUR EXPERIENCE WITH
DEVELOPING A PROTOCOL FOR FIREARM SURRENDER
AND COMPLIANCE WITH A FIREARM SURRENDER ORDER. SO, WHAT I’M GOING
TO START US OFF WITH IS THE PROBLEM ITSELF. FOR OVER 20 YEARS,
WISCONSIN STATUTES REQUIRED COURTS TO ORDER RESPONDENTS
TO SURRENDER FIREARMS WHEN THERE’S
AN INJUNCTION GRANTED IN DOMESTIC ABUSE. THE TERMS I’M USING
ARE “INJUNCTION”
AND “RESTRAINING ORDER.” WE HAVE THE TWO-PART SYSTEM,
I THINK, THAT EVERY STATE HAS FOR INJUNCTIONS. IN WISCONSIN, THEY HAVE
ACTUALLY 4 DIFFERENT TYPES OF RESTRAINING
ORDER INJUNCTION. THERE’S THE DOMESTIC ABUSE,
HARASSMENT, VULNERABLE ADULT, AND CHILD ABUSE. THE TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER,
TRO, WE CALL IT, THAT’S GRANTED EX PARTE. THAT’S GIVEN OUT
WITH A 14-DAY LIMIT. THAT’S WHY IT’S A TEMPORARY
RESTRAINING ORDER. THERE JUST HAS TO BE
PROBABLE CAUSE TO BELIEVE THAT THERE’S GROUNDS FOR IT. THAT IS THEN SERVED
ON A RESPONDENT, AND THEN THERE’S
THE INJUNCTION HEARING WHICH IS HELD 14 DAYS LATER, AND
THAT’S THE DUE PROCESS HEARING WHERE THE RESPONDENT HAS THE
RIGHT TO APPEAR AND CONTEST OR GO ALONG
WITH THE INJUNCTION. FOR OVER 20 YEARS,
THE STATUTE WAS NOT FOLLOWED, AND THAT’S THE PROBLEM
THAT WE HAD, AND AS A COURT COMMISSIONER,
I’M NOW RETIRED, BUT AS A COURT COMMISSIONER,
IT ALWAYS BOTHERED ME THAT WE WERE BASICALLY
HANDING OUT–AT THE TIME
OF THE INJUNCTION, WE WERE HANDING OUT
A WARNING TO THE RESPONDENTS THAT THEY COULDN’T
POSSESS A FIREARM, BUT WE WEREN’T REALLY ORDERING
ANYBODY TO SURRENDER FIREARMS, LIKE WE WERE
SUPPOSED TO BE DOING. IT WAS THE SAME FORM
THAT THEY USE IN FELONIES. IN WISCONSIN, IT’S A–
IF THERE’S A FELONY CONVICTION, THERE’S ALSO AN ORDER THAT
GOES OUT TO THE DEFENDANT SAYING YOU CAN’T POSSESS
ANY FIREARMS. THE PROBLEM THAT WE HAD
IN WISCONSIN IS NOBODY KNEW REALLY
HOW TO REQUIRE SURRENDER. WE WERE SUPPOSED
TO BE DOING IT, OUR ORDERS WERE SUPPOSED
TO REQUIRE THAT, BUT WE DIDN’T REALLY
KNOW HOW TO DO THAT. IT WAS MORE A MATTER OF
LOGISTICS OF DOING THAT. 4 COUNTIES–OURS WAS ONE–
WINNEBAGO COUNTY. THERE WERE 4 COUNTIES
THAT WERE GIVEN A GRANT FROM–VAWA GRANT
TO PILOT DIFFERENT WAYS OF LOOKING TO DO THIS. TWO OF THE COUNTIES WERE–
WERE ALL ADJOINING COUNTIES. TWO OF THEM HAD
SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENTS PUTTING TOGETHER
THEIR PROGRAMS. ONE HAD THE DISTRICT
ATTORNEY’S OFFICE. IN OUR COUNTY,
I WAS THE ONE WHO WAS, I GUESS, INTERESTED
IN DOING THIS, SO, I WANTED TO DO IT,
IT HAD BEEN SOMETHING I’D WANTED TO DO
FOR A LONG TIME, BUT, OUR APPROACH ENDED UP BEING ONE THAT WAS MORE COURT-CENTERED
THAN THE OTHERS. AND I THINK THAT WAS–
A LOT OF ADVANTAGES TO US DOING IT THAT WAY,
BECAUSE REALLY, WHAT THE PROJECT
WAS DESIGNED TO DO IS SET UP A SYSTEM
OR A PROTOCOL FOR COURTS TO DO THIS,
AND IT HELPED HAVING ME BE THE ONE THAT
WAS PILOTING IT. SO, I WON’T GO INTO
TOO MUCH DETAIL ABOUT HOW–WHAT WE DID, BUT THE COURT, CLERK OF COURTS, SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT,
AND DOMESTIC ABUSE SHELTER IN WINNEBAGO COUNTY, THOSE ARE
THE 4 BIGGEST PLAYERS IN THIS, AND I THINK IN RETROSPECT,
I THINK THAT’S– THOSE ARE THE MOST
IMPORTANT ONES, AND I THINK YOU HAVE
TO HAVE ALL 4 OF THOSE. THE DOMESTIC ABUSE SHELTER,
OBVIOUSLY, THAT’S TO– NOT ONLY BRINGS PEOPLE IN
REQUESTING THESE TYPE OF ORDERS BUT ALSO IS EDUCATING
THE PUBLIC ABOUT THE POSSIBILITY OF HAVING
A FIREARMS SURRENDER AND ALSO THE REALITY OF
FIREARMS SURRENDER, BECAUSE AS WE WERE GOING TO LEARN,
THAT SOMETIMES– THAT SOMETIMES DETERRED PEOPLE
FROM REQUESTING A RESTRAINING ORDER
IN THE FIRST PLACE, THE FACT THAT OUR COUNTY WAS
GOING TO BE FOLLOWING THROUGH. SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT
IS WHO ACTUALLY SEIZES THE FIREARMS,
COLLECTS THE FIREARMS, AND ENFORCES THE VIOLATIONS
OF THESE ORDERS. CLERK OF COURTS IS IMPORTANT
FOR SCHEDULING THE HEARINGS AND SETTING UP THE PAPERWORK,
AND THE COURT, I THINK, NEEDS TO BE INVOLVED AT LEAST
WITH THIS TYPE OF PROTOCOL, BECAUSE IT’S REALLY THE COURT
THAT’S PUTTING THE ISSUE OF FIREARMS OUT THERE
FOR EVERYONE TO SEE AND PUTS IT IN THE FOREFRONT
AND HAS TO SORT OF SET THE TONE
THAT’S GOING TO BE FOLLOWED. THE SYSTEM WAS SET UP
AND WE COORDINATED BETWEEN THE 4 PLAYERS. WE STARTED THE PROTOCOL
AND WITHOUT GOING INTO
TOO MUCH DETAIL, THE PROTOCOL WAS FAIRLY SIMPLE AND STILL IS BEING USED
AND IS STILL FAIRLY SIMPLE. AT THE TIME THE TEMPORARY
RESTRAINING ORDER IS GRANTED, THAT PETITIONER TAKES THAT OUT
TO THE SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT TO BE SERVED ON THE RESPONDENT. AND THAT INCLUDES A STATEMENT
RIGHT IN THERE SAYING IF THIS GETS GRANTED,
YOU’RE GONNA HAVE TO SURRENDER
YOUR FIREARMS AND YOU’RE GOING TO HAVE
TO IDENTIFY YOUR FIREARMS. THERE’S A FORM THAT WE HAD
FOR RESPONDENTS TO FILL OUT, IDENTIFYING HOW MANY
FIREARMS YOU HAVE, WHAT TYPE OF FIREARMS,
WHERE THEY ARE. IN WISCONSIN,
THAT’S A BIG QUESTION, BECAUSE A LOT OF PEOPLE
HAVE THESE CABINS IN THE NORTH WOODS OF WISCONSIN,
AND THAT’S WHERE A LOT OF TIMES THEY
KEEP THEIR FIREARMS, AND SO, THEY HAVE TO ALSO
SAY WHERE THEY ARE, AND THAT BECOMES IMPORTANT IF THERE’S A DISPUTE
ABOUT FIREARMS, BECAUSE WE ALSO HAVE A PROCESS FOR SENDING THE SHERIFF’S
DEPARTMENT OUT TO FIND THE FIREARMS
AND GET A SEARCH WARRANT IF THEY’RE NOT TURNED IN. THAT’S THE FIRST PART–
THE NOTICE. THE SECOND PART IS THE FORM
THAT HAS TO BE FILLED OUT, AND THEN, WHAT WE DID
IN OUR COUNTY, JUST TO–I GUESS
JUST TO STREAMLINE IT AND MAKE IT SIMPLE,
IS WE HAD SOMETHING THAT I CALLED
A COMPLIANCE HEARING. SO, THE DAY OF THE INJUNCTION, FOR EXAMPLE, WE HAD
AN INJUNCTION HEARING ON A WEDNESDAY MORNING AT 8:10, I WOULD SCHEDULE
A COMPLIANCE HEARING FOR THE FOLLOWING WEEK. IT WAS JUST 7 DAYS–
YOU HAVE 7 DAYS TO COME BACK HERE,
AND EITHER YOU’RE GONNA FILL OUT
THE FORM THAT SAYS YOU DON’T HAVE ANY FIREARMS
AND HAVEN’T HAD ANY FIREARMS OR YOU’RE GOING TO
IDENTIFY YOUR FIREARMS AND SURRENDER THE FIREARMS, OR, WHICH WE FOUND OUT
WAS FREQUENTLY THE CASE, IS RESPONDENT DOESN’T COME TO
THE INJUNCTION HEARING AT ALL BUT HE SHOWS UP
THE FOLLOWING WEEK BECAUSE HE’S CONCERNED ABOUT
HIS FIREARMS BEING SURRENDERED. SO, IT WAS SORT OF A COMPLIANCE
HEARING, I CALLED IT. IT WAS SORT OF
A CATCHALL HEARING FOR ALL OF THOSE
DIFFERENT PURPOSES. AND THERE’S ALSO
SOMETHING UNIQUE, I DON’T KNOW IF IT’S
UNIQUE TO WISCONSIN, BUT THERE’S–WHEN THEY
CREATED THE STATUTE ON FIREARMS SURRENDER
AND RESTRAINING ORDERS, THEY ALSO PUT IN SOMETHING
FOR THIRD-PARTY SURRENDER, WHICH WAS REALLY SET OUT THERE
FOR ALL THOSE YEARS AND NOBODY REALLY USED IT. WE ACTUALLY DID A NUMBER OF
THIRD-PARTY SURRENDER HEARINGS AND WE CAME UP WITH A PROTOCOL
FOR THAT WHERE WHAT WE WOULD DO IS
IF YOU WERE AT THE HEARING AND YOU HAD FIREARMS
AND YOU WANTED TO GIVE THEM TO YOUR SISTER
OR TO YOUR PARENTS, USUALLY IT WAS PARENTS OR A–
PARENTS OR A SIBLING MOST COMMONLY
WHO TOOK THE FIREARMS. WE WOULD MAKE
THAT PERSON COME IN AND PUT THEM ON THE RECORD,
SWEAR THEM IN, AND WARN THEM,
BECAUSE THE STATUTE SAYS YOU’RE SUPPOSED TO IN WISCONSIN,
YOU WARN THEM ABOUT THE CONSEQUENCES
OF TURNING A FIREARM OVER TO SOMEBODY
WHO HAS THE INJUNCTION, AND IT’S A FELONY
IN WISCONSIN TO DO THAT, WARN THEM ABOUT CIVIL LIABILITY AND ASK THEM ABOUT
WHETHER OR NOT THEY HAD ANY KIND OF
RESTRICTIONS ON FIREARMS. AND IN CERTAIN CASES
WHERE THERE’S A FINDING THAT THE PERSON WAS
AN APPROPRIATE PERSON, WE WOULD GIVE THEM
THE FIREARMS. THIS IS PROBABLY THE MOST
CONTROVERSIAL PART OF THIS. I THINK WHEN WE STARTED
TO TALK ABOUT IT AFTERWARDS, I THINK A LOT OF
THE DOMESTIC ABUSE SHELTERS AROUND THE STATE OF WISCONSIN
WERE SKEPTICAL THAT THIS WOULD WORK,
BUT MY EXPERIENCE WAS IT ACTUALLY WAS USEFUL
FOR A VERY SPECIFIC REASON, AND I’LL GET TO THAT
IN JUST A MINUTE. BUT…THE PROTOCOL,
WE STARTED IT OUT RIGHT ABOUT– AS SOON AS WE GOT THE OK
TO GO AHEAD WITH THE GRANT, AND WE STARTED IMPLEMENTING IT. THERE WERE SOME PROBLEMS THAT
WE IDENTIFIED ALONG THE WAY, BUT THOSE WERE MOSTLY
LOGISTICAL PROBLEMS, AND THEY WERE FOR THE MOST PART
FAIRLY SIMPLE. I THINK PROBABLY THE ONE
THAT STANDS OUT THE MOST IS SIMPLY HOW DO YOU GO ABOUT
SURRENDERING FIREARMS? WHEN YOU ORDER SOMEBODY,
“TURN IN YOUR GUNS,” YOU’VE GOTTA DO THAT,
I JUST HAD THE SHERIFF’S EVIDENCE COORDINATOR, I JUST HAD HER BUSINESS CARDS
IN THE COURTROOM AND I WOULD JUST GIVE THEM
A CARD AND SAY, “THIS IS THE PERSON YOU CALL.” CALL HER UP.
SHE’LL GIVE YOU
A TIME AND A PLACE WHERE YOU NEED TO TURN
THOSE FIREARMS IN, AND IT WOULD BE DONE. NOW, WHAT WE ALWAYS DID WAS WHETHER OR NOT
A THIRD PARTY WAS GOING TO HOLD
THE FIREARMS OR NOT, THE OTHER THING WE CAME UP WITH
ALONG THE WAY WAS THE FIREARMS GO TO
THE SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT, AND THE SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT
TAKES THEM IN AND LOGS THEM IN
AND LOCKS THEM UP. IF YOUR SISTER’S
GONNA COME IN NEXT WEEK AND TAKE THE FIREARMS,
THAT’S FINE, BUT WE’RE GONNA HAVE
A HEARING FIRST AND WE’RE GONNA PROVE
THAT PERSON FIRST AND WE’RE GOING TO–ALSO,
THE SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT IS GONNA RUN A BACKGROUND CHECK TO SEE IF THAT PERSON
CAN HAVE THE FIREARMS BACK. IF THERE’S ANYTHING
THAT GOES WRONG, IF THAT PERSON ISN’T APPROVED, THE FIREARMS STAY LOCKED UP. IT ENDED UP BEING, I THINK,
A STREAMLINED APPROACH AND A FAIRLY SIMPLE ONE. I THINK FOR THAT REASON,
WE DIDN’T REALLY HAVE A LOT OF
PROBLEMS WITH THAT. THERE WERE SOMETIMES PROBLEMS
WITH OTHER COUNTIES AND SOMETIMES EVEN
OUT OF STATE, BUT MOSTLY WE JUST WERE ABLE
TO WORK THROUGH THOSE, AND IT’S JUST A MATTER OF
THINKING THROUGH THE LOGISTICS, AND I THINK THIS IS
THE BIGGEST– THE BIGGEST LESSON
IN ALL OF THIS IS IT’S THE DETAILS. AND KNOWING AS A COURT, KNOWING THAT IF YOU ORDER
SOMEBODY TO DO SOMETHING, SOMEONE’S GONNA FOLLOW THROUGH
AND MAKE SURE YOU DO THAT. THE OTHER THING THAT
I THINK HAPPENED A LOT, WELL, HAPPENED AT TIMES WHERE THE RESPONDENT WOULD COME IN
AT THE COMPLIANCE HEARING AND SAY, “I DON’T
HAVE ANY GUNS,” AND THE PETITIONER WOULD SAY,
“YES, HE DOES. HE DOES HAVE GUNS
AND I KNOW WHERE THEY ARE,” WE WOULD–OUR SHERIFF’S
DEPARTMENT, WE ALWAYS HAVE A DEPUTY IN THE COURTROOM. THEY KNEW TO PICK UP ON THAT AND THEY KNEW THAT
THAT WAS AT LEAST– AT LEAST PROBABLY
PROBABLE CAUSE TO BELIEVE THAT THAT PERSON WAS
COMMITTING A FELONY. HE SAYS HE DOESN’T
HAVE FIREARMS, YOU KNOW THERE’S AN ORDER
THAT SAYS HE CAN’T, AND SOMEONE
IN THE PUBLIC AT LEAST IS TELLING YOU THAT THERE IS
A FELONY BEING COMMITTED. SO, THEY WOULD KNOW TO FOLLOW
UP, AND USUALLY THEY WOULD FOLLOW UP WITH EITHER
INVESTIGATION BY FURTHER TALKING
TO THAT RESPONDENT. ALSO, GETTING A SEARCH WARRANT
TO GO OUT AND LOOK FOR THE FIREARMS. THE PROTOCOL THAT WE USED,
AS I SAY,
WITH A FEW REFINEMENTS, ULTIMATELY BECAME THE FRAMEWORK
FOR THE PROPOSED SAFE ACT, WHICH ENDED UP
BECOMING STATE LAW, THAT THE COURTS IN
THE STATE OF WISCONSIN HAVE TO FOLLOW THROUGH
AND BASICALLY SET UP COMPLIANCE HEARING, NOTIFY THE RESPONDENTS, AND MAKE THEM
FILL OUT THE FORM, AND TURN THAT BACK IN. THERE WERE SOME
11TH-HOUR OBJECTIONS FROM A SPECIFIC GROUP
THAT WAS THREATENING TO BLOCK THE LEGISLATIVE
ACTION HERE TO PUT THIS THROUGH, AND ACTUALLY,
WHAT ENDED UP HAPPENING, THERE WERE SOME
COMPROMISES MADE SO THAT IT WAS
ULTIMATELY PASSED, AND IT’S INTERESTING BECAUSE
DARREN TALKED ABOUT THE FEDERAL LAW HERE
FOR POSSESSION OF A FIREARM WHEN THERE’S
AN INJUNCTION WITHOUT– AN INJUNCTION’S BEEN
PUT IN PLACE BY THE STATE THAT THE RESPONDENT HAS HAD
AN OPPORTUNITY TO BE HEARD, AND NOTICE OF THE HEARING, AND THAT’S IMPORTANT BECAUSE THE FRAMEWORK HERE
THAT WE’VE PUT TOGETHER FOR SURRENDERING FIREARMS, IF YOU LOOKED AT THAT
TOGETHER WITH THE FEDERAL LAW, YOU WOULD SEE THAT THERE WERE
PROBLEMS, BECAUSE ONCE THE INJUNCTION’S GRANTED,
IF YOU TELL SOMEBODY TO GO UP TO THEIR CABIN
AND GET THEIR GUNS AND BRING THEM DOWN,
THEY COULD BE POTENTIALLY VIOLATING THE FEDERAL LAW,
BECAUSE THEY WOULD BE DRIVING IN A CAR WITH A GUN AND THEY’RE NOT SUPPOSED
TO HAVE THAT, SO, THE COMPROMISE
THAT WAS WORKED OUT WAS ULTIMATELY TO–THANK YOU–
TO PUT THE… THE INJUNCTION,
STAY THE INJUNCTION FOR 48 HOURS OR MORE SOMETIMES AND PUT A–GO BACK TO
THE TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER, HAVE THE PERSON
SURRENDER THE FIREARMS SO THEY’RE NOT VIOLATING
THE STATE OR THE FEDERAL LAW. I GUESS THE REASON I’M BRINGING
THIS UP IS BECAUSE I THINK IT’S IMPORTANT
TO TALK TO OTHER GROUPS THAT ARE OPPOSING
ANYTHING LIKE THIS AND SEE IF YOU CAN HEAR
WHAT THEIR REAL OBJECTION IS, AND IN OUR EXPERIENCE,
I THINK IT ACTUALLY IMPROVED OUR PROTOCOL
BECAUSE IT ACTUALLY ENDED UP–MAKING A–TAKING CARE
OF A PROBLEM THAT WAS ALREADY THERE. IT’S TIME TO STOP. SORRY.
STILL HAVE UNFINISHED BUSINESS, BUT I’LL GET TO THAT MAYBE
IF I GET ANOTHER CHANCE. THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] MITCHELL: THANK YOU VERY MUCH,
MR. KECK. THANK YOU SO MUCH. NEXT UP WE HAVE DR. APRIL ZEOLI, WHO IS FROM
MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY. SHE IS A CUTTING-EDGE RESEARCHER
LOOKING AT, AMONG OTHER THINGS, THE EFFICACY OF THESE VARIOUS
INTERVENTIONS WE’VE BEEN TALKING ABOUT. AND SHE’S HERE TO SHARE
SOME INFORMATION, I THINK, THAT’S VERY VALUABLE
TO THOSE OF US WHO ARE WORKING IN THE FIELD TRYING TO DISCERN WHICH OF
THE VARIOUS INTERVENTIONS WE’RE CONSIDERING ARE THE ONES
WE SHOULD BE PURSUING. [APPLAUSE] ZEOLI: THANK YOU. SO BY FAR THE MOST RESEARCHED OF THE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
FIREARM-SPECIFIC INTERVENTIONS ARE THOSE POLICIES THAT REQUIRE
THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN PUT UNDER DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
RESTRAINING ORDERS, IT BANS THEM FROM PURCHASE
OR POSSESSION OF FIREARMS. NOW, AT THE STATE LEVEL,
THESE LAWS CAN BE VERY DIFFERENT FROM THE FEDERAL LEVEL. THEY CAN BE BROADER. AND MANY STATES INCLUDE
DATING PARTNERS UNDER THEIR RESTRICTIONS. MANY STATES INCLUDE
EX PARTE ORDERS UNDER THEIR RESTRICTIONS. SO 3 LONGITUDINAL STUDIES OF
THE STATE LEVEL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE RESTRAINING
ORDER GUN PROHIBITIONS WERE DONE, AND NOW, ACTUALLY,
A FOURTH THAT I JUST COMPLETED. AND THESE LONGITUDINAL STUDIES
WENT FROM ABOUT 1980 TO THE EARLY TO MID-2000s. AND NOW MY RECENT ONE GOES UP
TO 2013. AND THEY EACH LOOKED AT
THE IMPACT OF THESE LAWS ON INTIMATE PARTNER HOMICIDES. AND ALL OF THESE STUDIES
ARE CONSISTENT IN FINDING THAT WHEN THESE LAWS ARE IN PLACE,
THERE IS AN ASSOCIATED REDUCTION IN INTIMATE PARTNER HOMICIDES
OF ABOUT 7% TO 19%, DEPENDING ON WHETHER YOU’RE
LOOKING AT THE STATE LEVEL OR AT LARGE CITIES WITHIN
THOSE STATES. THIS IS IMPORTANT BECAUSE THERE
IS A HYPOTHESIS THAT WHEN SOMEONE DOESN’T HAVE A FIREARM
BUT THEY WANT TO KILL– THEY WANT TO KILL
THEIR INTIMATE PARTNER– THEY’RE JUST GOING TO FIND
A DIFFERENT WAY TO DO IT. THEY’RE GOING TO USE A KNIFE. THEY’RE GOING TO USE
BODILY FORCE. THEY’RE GOING TO DO IT. IF THAT HYPOTHESIS HELD,
WE WOULD EXPECT INTIMATE PARTNER HOMICIDES
COMMITTED WITH FIREARMS TO GO DOWN BUT TOTAL INTIMATE PARTNER
HOMICIDES TO STAY THE SAME. THAT’S NOT WHAT ANY OF THESE–
STUDIES FOUND. THEY ALL FOUND THAT
TOTAL INTIMATE PARTNER HOMICIDE WAS REDUCED, SUGGESTING THAT
THESE LAWS MAY SAVE LIVES. BUT THESE LAWS ARE
VERY DIFFICULT TO IMPLEMENT. THE PURCHASE PROHIBITION
IS PRETTY STRAIGHTFORWARD. IF YOU GO TO A FEDERALLY
LICENSED FIREARMS DEALER AND YOU ARE RESTRICTED BECAUSE OF A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
RESTRAINING ORDER, THE DISQUALIFIED
RESTRAINING ORDER COMES UP DURING YOUR BACKGROUND CHECK, AND YOU ARE DENIED THE SALE. THERE ARE LOOPHOLES. YOU’D MAY BE ABLE TO GO TO
A PRIVATE SELLER IN THE STATE, BUT IF YOU’RE FOUND THROUGH
A BACKGROUND CHECK TO BE RESTRICTED, YOU CAN’T BUY. IF YOU POSSESS A FIREARM
ALREADY– WE JUST HEARD AN EXCELLENT TALK
ABOUT WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU ALREADY POSSESS
A FIREARM AND ARE THEN RESTRICTED. IF YOU POSSESS
A FIREARM ALREADY, GENERALLY NOT MUCH HAPPENS. YOU OFTEN GET TO KEEP
THE FIREARM. BUT MANY JURISDICTIONS AND
STATES ARE TRYING TO FIGURE OUT HOW BETTER TO IMPLEMENT
THESE LAWS. AGAIN, WE JUST HEARD
A QUITE GOOD SPEECH ON IT. BUT IN THESE STATES,
THE LIGHT GREEN STATES AND THE DARK GREEN STATES
HAVE PASSED LEGISLATION SUGGESTING HOW THESE ARE TO
BE IMPLEMENTED. AND WHAT GENERALLY HAPPENS IS
THAT THE PERSON WHO IS SUPPOSED TO RELINQUISH THEIR FIREARM
HAS TO RELINQUISH IT TO LAW ENFORCEMENT OR TRANSFER IT TO A FEDERALLY
LICENSED FIREARM DEALER OR TRANSFER IT
TO A THIRD PARTY. AND THEY HAVE TO DO THIS
WITHIN A CERTAIN AMOUNT OF TIME. AND IF THEY TRANSFER IT TO
A LICENSED FIREARM DEALER OR A THIRD PARTY, THEY HAVE TO BRING AN AFFIDAVIT
OR A RECEIPT TO LAW ENFORCEMENT. AND, AGAIN, THEY DO IT WITHIN
24 TO 72 HOURS. IT DEPENDS ON THE STATE. IF THEY DON’T DO THIS,
IN SOME STATES, THE COURT CAN ORDER A SEARCH AND SEIZURE
WARRANT. THAT’S PART OF THE STATUTE TO GET THESE FIREARMS AWAY
FROM THESE PEOPLE. NOW, A DEMONSTRATION PROJECT
WAS COMPLETED IN CALIFORNIA THAT LOOKED AT
THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THEIR LAW. AND WHAT THEY DID WAS WHEN
THEY SUSPECTED OR KNEW SOMEONE HAD A FIREARM
AND WAS NEWLY PROHIBITED, WHEN LAW ENFORCEMENT SERVED
THE RESTRAINING ORDER, THEY WOULD SAY,
“YOU ARE PROHIBITED FROM FIREARM POSSESSION.” YOU KNOW, THEY TOLD THEM ABOUT
THE PROHIBITION, ASKED FOR THE FIREARMS RIGHT
THEN AND THERE OR TOLD THEM TO TRANSFER IT
TO A LICENSED DEALER. AND THEY WERE ACTUALLY QUITE
SUCCESSFUL IN GETTING FIREARMS FROM PEOPLE ON THE SCENE. AND, IMPORTANTLY, THE RISK OF
DANGER TO LAW ENFORCEMENT WAS NOT ANY GREATER THAN DURING
THE NORMAL SERVING OF A RESTRAINING ORDER. SO THAT’S A MODEL THAT MAY BE
ABLE TO BE REPLICATED IN MANY STATES TO CONTINUE TO
REMOVE THESE FIREARMS TO BETTER IMPLEMENT THESE
FIREARMS PROHIBITIONS. THE LAST LAW I WANT
TO TALK ABOUT IS THE STATE LEGISLATION ON THESE MISDEMEANOR
VIOLENCE CONVICTIONS, WHERE YOU’RE PROHIBITED FROM
FIREARM PURCHASE OR POSSESSION DUE TO
THE MISDEMEANOR CONVICTION. NOW, MOST STATES THAT HAVE THIS
FOLLOW THE FEDERAL MODEL AND ONLY RESTRICT FOR
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. BUT SOME STATES–THE STATES
IN GREEN–HAVE BROADER PROHIBITIONS, WHERE ANYBODY
CONVICTED OF A VIOLENT MISDEMEANOR– IT DOESN’T MATTER WHAT
THE RELATIONSHIP IS– IS PROHIBITED FROM PURCHASE
OR POSSESSION. AND THE STUDY I JUST COMPLETED
FOUND THAT WHEN A STATE PROHIBITS
ALL VIOLENT MISDEMEANORS FROM PURCHASE AND POSSESSION,
THERE’S ABOUT AN 18% REDUCTION ASSOCIATED WITH
INTIMATE PARTNER HOMICIDE. BUT THOSE STUDIES THAT I TOLD
YOU ABOUT BEFORE THAT LOOKED AT
THE RESTRAINING ORDER LAWS, NONE OF THEM FOUND AN ASSOCIATED
REDUCTION WHEN YOU’RE JUST FOCUSED ON
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. AND THAT’S PROBABLY BECAUSE
THOSE LAWS ARE HARDER TO IMPLEMENT. WHEN THESE
MISDEMEANOR CONVICTIONS GO IN THE BACKGROUND SYSTEM,
THE RELATIONSHIP INFORMATION OFTEN DOESN’T COME WITH THEM. SO WHEN YOU GET
THAT RESTRICTION… WHEN YOU GET THAT
MISDEMEANOR CONVICTION, YOU DON’T KNOW. THE PERSON DOING THE
BACKGROUND CHECK DOESN’T KNOW. WITH ALL VIOLENT MISDEMEANORS,
THEY KNOW THEY NEED TO DISQUALIFY THAT PERSON
FROM PURCHASE. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. [APPLAUSE] MITCHELL:
THANK YOU VERY MUCH, DR. ZEOLI. AND THAT’S CERTAINLY AN AREA
THAT WE’VE HEARD A COUPLE TIMES NOW WHERE
THERE’S DEFINITE OPPORTUNITIES FOR IMPROVEMENT
IN INFORMATION SHARING. AND I KNOW THE DEPARTMENT AS
A WHOLE HAS BEEN WORKING HARD ON THOSE ISSUES AS WELL. IT’S MY PLEASURE TO INTRODUCE
OUR NEXT PANELIST, ELIZABETH AVORE
FROM EVERYTOWN FOR GUN SAFETY. AND MS. AVORE AND HER COLLEAGUES
AT EVERYTOWN HAVE ENGAGED IN MANY, MANY DIFFERENT EFFORTS
TO HELP COMMUNITIES RESPOND BETTER TO THIS LETHAL THREAT
WE’RE TALKING ABOUT. AND WHAT’S SO WONDERFUL ABOUT
THEIR WORK IS THEY BACK IT UP WITH SOME VERY ROBUST
DATA COLLECTION AND RESEARCH EFFORTS. SO SHE’S HERE TO SHARE WHAT
EVERYTOWN HAS LEARNED ABOUT HOW WE CAN BEST PROTECT
CHILDREN AND FAMILIES AND OUR COMMUNITIES. [APPLAUSE] AVORE: THANKS. WELL, WE’VE HEARD
A LOT OF GREAT EVIDENCE TODAY THAT DESCRIBES THE LINK BETWEEN
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND GUN VIOLENCE AND JUST HOW
STRONG THAT LINK IS. BOTH DR. CAMPBELL AND DR. ZEOLI
HAVE DONE RESEARCH THAT’S REALLY SHED A LOT OF
LIGHT ON HOW GUNS ACTUALLY TURN DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
SITUATIONS INTO
DOMESTIC HOMICIDE SITUATIONS. WHAT EVERYTOWN HAS DONE IS
TAKEN A CLOSER LOOK AT MASS SHOOTINGS IN PARTICULAR. AND DESPITE THE WAY
THESE SHOOTINGS ARE PORTRAYED BY MEDIA, WE FOUND THAT MOST
OF THEM ARE ACTUALLY RELATED TO DOMESTIC OR FAMILY VIOLENCE. SO WHAT WE DID IS WE TOOK A… WE CONDUCTED A COMPREHENSIVE
ANALYSIS OF EVERY MASS SHOOTING THAT
WAS IDENTIFIABLE EITHER THROUGH FBI DATA
OR THROUGH MEDIA REPORTS FROM JANUARY 2009 TO JULY 2015. AND WE FOUND THAT IN 57% OF
THOSE SHOOTINGS, THE SHOOTER ACTUALLY KILLED
A FORMER OR CURRENT SPOUSE OR AN INTIMATE PARTNER
OR OTHER FAMILY MEMBER. AND, ACTUALLY, WHEN YOU LOOK AT
THAT SUBSET OF MASS SHOOTINGS, THOSE THAT WERE
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE- OR FAMILY VIOLENCE-RELATED, ACTUALLY, OVER A QUARTER
OF THOSE SHOOTERS HAD A PRIOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
CHARGE. AND I SHOULD HAVE PREFACED–
THIS ALL BY SAYING THAT MASS SHOOTINGS ARE A VERY SMALL
PERCENTAGE OF THE GUN VIOLENCE THAT OCCURS
IN THIS COUNTRY. IT’S ACTUALLY UNDER 1%. BUT IT’S KIND OF FASCINATING
THAT EVEN WHEN YOU LOOK AT THIS SUBSET,
IT IS SO CLOSELY CORRELATED WITH DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. I THINK THAT REALLY, THE CLOSER
YOU LOOK AT THIS ISSUE, THE MORE YOU–THE CLEARER IT
BECOMES THAT OUR COUNTRY’S GUN VIOLENCE
PROBLEM IS REALLY A DOMESTIC VIOLENCE PROBLEM, AND THAT OUR
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE PROBLEM IS ABSOLUTELY A GUN PROBLEM. THE TWO ARE JUST VERY INTIMATELY
LINKED. AND AS WE HEARD EARLIER, THERE
ARE PROVISIONS IN FEDERAL LAW THAT ARE DESIGNED TO ADDRESS
THIS VERY PROBLEM BY KEEPING GUNS OUT OF THE HANDS
OF DOMESTIC USERS. THAT’S THOSE PROHIBITORS THAT
ARE BASED ON RESTRAINING ORDERS
AND ON MISDEMEANOR CRIMES OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. AND, OF COURSE, TO BE EFFECTIVE,
THOUGH, THESE PROHIBITORS NEED TO BE ENFORCED. AND I KIND OF LIKE TO THINK OF
IT AS THERE ARE TWO SIDES TO THIS ENFORCEMENT COIN. WE NEED TO KEEP THESE
PROHIBITED DOMESTIC ABUSERS FROM BUYING NEW GUNS, AND WE NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT
THEY GET RID OF THOSE GUNS THAT THEY ALREADY HAVE,
THAT THEY DON’T HOLD ON TO GUNS THAT THEY HAD BEFORE THEY
BECAME PROHIBITED. SO THE WAY WE KEEP THEM
FROM GETTING NEW GUNS IS THROUGH THESE
BACKGROUND CHECK REQUIREMENTS. AND FEDERAL LAW REQUIRES
THAT A PERSON PASS A BACKGROUND CHECK IF
THEY BUY A GUN FROM A GUN STORE, FROM A LICENSED GUN DEALER. AND THERE ARE ACTUALLY 18 STATES
THAT HAVE GONE BEYOND THAT AND REQUIRE BACKGROUND CHECKS ON
ALL HANDGUN SALES, EVEN IF THEY’RE SOLD BY
UNLICENSED SELLERS, WHICH EVIDENCE SUGGESTS COMPRISE
ABOUT 40% OF THE GUN MARKET. AND THEN
THE WAY WE PREVENT ABUSERS FROM KEEPING THE GUNS THEY
ALREADY HAVE IS BY REQUIRING THAT THEY RELINQUISH THOSE GUNS,
AS WE’VE HEARD TODAY. SO WHEN A FINAL DOMESTIC
VIOLENCE RESTRAINING ORDER IS ISSUED OR WHEN A MISDEMEANOR CRIME
OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE CONVICTION OCCURS, ACTUALLY
MAKING SURE THAT THE ABUSER IS REQUIRED TO GIVE UP HIS GUNS
AT THAT POINT. SO EVERYTOWN RECENTLY DID
SOME RESEARCH IN RHODE ISLAND THAT REVEALED JUST
HOW RARELY ABUSERS IN THAT STATE ARE ORDERED TO TURN IN FIREARMS
IN THEIR POSSESSION, EVEN WHEN THAT RESTRAINING ORDER
MAKES THEM PROHIBITED FROM OWNING FIREARMS UNDER
FEDERAL LAW. SO WHAT WE DID IS WE TOOK A LOOK
AT ALL THE PUBLICLY AVAILABLE FINAL PROTECTIVE ORDERS ISSUED BY RHODE ISLAND COURTS IN 2012,
2013, AND 2014. AND WHEN I SAY “FINAL DOMESTIC
VIOLENCE RESTRAINING ORDERS,” I’M TALKING ABOUT THOSE
THAT ARE ISSUED AFTER NOTICE AND A HEARING AND NOT THOSE OF THE EX PARTE
STAGE. AND WHAT WE FOUND IS THAT COURTS
ORDERED ABUSERS TO TURN IN THEIR GUNS IN ONLY 5% OF
THOSE CASES. AND SO KEEP IN MIND THAT THE
VAST MAJORITY OF THESE CASES– ABOUT 3/4 OF THEM–
MET THE CRITERIA TO BE PROHIBITED UNDER
FEDERAL LAW. BUT THE JUDGES ARE ACTUALLY
NO MORE LIKELY TO ORDER ABUSERS WHO ARE PROHIBITED BY FEDERAL
LAW TO TURN IN THEIR GUNS THAN ABUSERS WHO WEREN’T. SO THAT MEANS THAT STILL JUST
5% OF THE ABUSERS WHO ARE FEDERALLY PROHIBITED
FROM HAVING GUNS WERE ACTUALLY ORDERED TO TURN IN
THEIR GUNS AT THE TIME OF–THE RESTRAINING
ORDER WAS ISSUED. AND JUST, QUICKLY, THE REASON
THERE ARE ONLY– WHAT’S GOING ON WITH THE OTHER
1/4 OF THOSE ORDERS IS THEY WEREN’T PROHIBITING BECAUSE
THE RELATIONSHIP CRITERIA WASN’T MET, TYPICALLY BECAUSE THE VICTIM
AND ABUSER WERE NON-COHABITATING DATING PARTNERS OR ELSE THEY WOULD HAVE SOME
OTHER FAMILIAR RELATIONSHIP, LIKE SIBLINGS, AND THAT
DIDN’T MEET THE CRITERIA FOR FEDERAL LAW
TO BE PROHIBITING. SO AS A RESULT, WHAT WE FOUND
IS THAT–WE ACTUALLY TOOK EVEN A CLOSER LOOK, AND WE SAW THAT EVEN WHEN
THE WRITTEN RECORDS SURROUNDING THESE ORDERS
SPECIFICALLY INDICATED A FIREARMS REC– COURTS ACTUALLY ORDERED ABUSERS
TO TURN IN THEIR GUNS IN LESS THAN 13% OF THE CASES. SO MORE OFTEN BUT STILL
VERY INFREQUENTLY. WHAT THAT MEANT IS THAT
AS A RESULT, 325 ABUSERS WHO APPEARED
TO HAVE ACCESS TO GUNS WERE ACTUALLY NOT ORDERED TO
TURN THEM IN. AND JUST THIS PAST MAY,
WE FOLLOWED UP ON THOSE 325 ABUSERS WHO
APPEARED TO HAVE ACCESS TO GUNS BUT…WERE ORDERED TO TURN
THEM IN. AND WE FOUND THAT, ACTUALLY,
25% OF THEM HAD ANOTHER RUN-IN WITH THE LAW
AFTER THAT. SO JUST TO KEEP IN MIND
THE TIMEFRAME HERE. THESE ORDERS WERE ALL ISSUED
IN 2012, 2013, AND 2014. SO FOR 1/4 OF THESE ABUSERS TO
HAVE A RUN-IN WITH THE LAW BY MID-2016 IS ACTUALLY
PRETTY ASTOUNDING. AND I AM OUT OF TIME,
SO I’LL JUST LEAVE IT WITH THAT. [APPLAUSE] MITCHELL: THANK YOU, MS. AVORE,
FOR SHARING THAT RESEARCH WITH US ALL. NEXT UP IS DAVE THOMAS,
WHO IS SOMEONE THAT I’VE KNOWN FOR A VERY LONG TIME AND HAVE
ADMIRED FOR A VERY LONG TIME. AND EVERY TIME I TALK TO HIM
ABOUT THESE ISSUES, WHICH I KNOW HE’S BEEN
DEVOTED TO FOR MANY, MANY YEARS, I LEARN SOMETHING NEW,
AND I’M SURE YOU WILL, AS WELL. HE’S HERE TO SHARE
A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER’S PERSPECTIVE ON THESE ISSUES. THOMAS: THANK YOU.
GOOD AFTERNOON. YOU KNOW, I SEE THE ROLE
OF LAW ENFORCEMENT IN THIS AS CRITICAL. I MEAN, WE ARE–A DIRECT CONDUIT
BETWEEN THE COMMUNITY AND THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE
SYSTEM. AND WE HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY
TO GAIN INTEL EVERY SINGLE TIME WE HAVE
ONE OF THESE–AN INTERACTION. AND WHEN WE REALIZE THAT
ROUGHLY HALF OF THE WOMEN KILLED BY THEIR INTIMATE PARTNERS
HAD CONTACT WITH THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM
TO REPORT VIOLENCE AND STALKING WITHIN THE YEAR PRECEDING
THE MURDERS, THAT SHOULD TELL US SOMETHING. THAT SHOULD TELL US, “I HAD
THE OPPORTUNITY TO INTERVENE. DID I DO EVERYTHING THAT I COULD
DO WHEN I WAS THERE?” YOU KNOW, WHEN WOMEN SEEK
ASSISTANCE FROM THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE
SYSTEM, THEY CREATE THAT OPPORTUNITY
FOR INTERVENTION. AND FIRST RESPONDERS,
ESPECIALLY, HAVE OPPORTUNITIES TO DISARM PERPETRATORS
IF THEY’RE EQUIPPED WITH THE PROPER KNOWLEDGE; IF THEY LOOK AT THE SITUATION
IN CONTEXT; AND IF THEY HAVE A DEPTH OF
KNOWLEDGE OF THIS AREA OF THE LAW AND OF THE INCIDENT
THAT THEY’RE INVESTIGATING. YOU TALK TO INDIVIDUALS WHO
INVESTIGATE DRUG-RELATED CRIMES, MAN, THEY KNOW ALL ABOUT IT. I GOT TWO BROTHERS WHO ARE
MOTOR OFFICERS. THEY ARE SO MUCH, “I DON’T CARE
ABOUT PULLING SOMEBODY OVER” THAT THEY CAN TELL YOU
EVERYTHING ABOUT IT. RIGHT? WE’VE GOT TO GET OFFICERS MORE
INVOLVED IN UNDERSTANDING THAT WHEN I SAY DOMESTIC VIOLENCE,
I’M ALSO TALKING ABOUT STALKING, I’M ALSO TALKING ABOUT
SEXUAL ASSAULT, I’M ALSO
TALKING ABOUT CHILD ABUSE. SO WHEN ANY ONE OF THEM
COMES UP, I START THINKING OF ALL THESE SAFETY FACTORS. WE ARE CHALLENGED TO ENSURE
THE SAFETY OF EVERYONE INVOLVED, RIGHT? THAT MEANS ME GOING HOME
SAFE, TOO. AND, YOU KNOW,
IN THE LAST 5 YEARS, 42 OFFICERS DIED INTERVENING
IN DOMESTICS BY FIREARM. AND IN A LOT OF THESE, WE FIND
THAT THE PERPETRATOR ALSO HAD SEXUAL ASSAULT CHARGES,
ALSO WAS A STALKER. AND SO THAT
INTERCONNECTED NATURE, WHEN I UNDERSTAND THAT, I UNDERSTAND WHY I SHOULD BE
ASKING QUESTIONS. AND, ACTUALLY, 42
AS OF YESTERDAY. THIS MORNING, IF YOU GOT
UP AND READ THE “POST,” NUMBER 43 WAS KILLED EARLIER
THIS WEEK. AND I EMPHASIZE THAT ESPECIALLY
WITH MY LAW ENFORCEMENT BROTHERS AND SISTERS BECAUSE,
WHAT’S IN IT FOR ME? WHAT’S IN IT FOR YOU?
GOING HOME SAFE. WHAT’S IN IT FOR YOUR COMMUNITY?
KEEPING THAT COMMUNITY SAFE. GUNS ARE THE WEAPON
OF CHOICE FOR INTIMATE PARTNER
HOMICIDE PERPETRATORS. I THINK THAT’S BEEN CLEARLY
ILLUSTRATED HERE TODAY WITH THE STATISTICS. AND SIMPLY HAVING
THAT GUN THERE, YOU KNOW, WHEN YOU READ DAVID ADAMS’ WORK, AND TALKING
TO THESE PERPETRATORS, WHO TOLD HIM IF THAT GUN
WASN’T THERE, THEY WOULD NOT HAVE CARRIED
OUT THE ACT. ABOUT 2/3 OF
THE INTIMATE PARTNER HOMICIDES IN THE COUNTRY WE KNOW ARE
COMMITTED BY GUNS. AND SO THAT MEANS THAT DEPTH
OF KNOWLEDGE BY ME WHEN I WALK THROUGH THAT DOOR
SHOULD BE HAVING A WORKING KNOWLEDGE
OF THE FEDERAL STATUTES, HAVING A WORKING KNOWLEDGE OF
THE STATE AND LOCAL STATUTES. BECAUSE YOU KNOW WHAT? EVEN IF I CAN’T ENFORCE
FEDERAL LAW, I DAMN WELL SURE CAN TAKE
HIS CONTRABAND, RIGHT? STATE AND LOCAL LEGISLATION,
AS YOU’VE SEEN, IN SOME PLACES REALLY DO ENHANCE
MY ABILITY TO DO MY JOB, BUT IF I’M COMMUNICATING,
IF I’M COORDINATING, IF I’M COLLABORATING
WITH MY FEDERAL PARTNERS, WITH MY LOCAL PARTNERS,
WITH THE PROSECUTOR, WITH EVERYBODY ELSE,
WE CAN WORK TOGETHER, AS WE ALL SHOULD BE,
TO GET STUFF DONE. AND IT’S ABOUT COMMITMENT. YOU KNOW, WHEN WE TALKED ABOUT
EARLIER THE LETHALITY ASSESSMENT PROGRAM
THAT WAS DEVELOPED IN MARYLAND, YOU KNOW, OVER ABOUT–
IN THE LAST 10 YEARS, WE STARTED IN 2006-2007, AN AVERAGE OF 69 HOMICIDES
A YEAR STATEWIDE. FOR THE LAST 5 YEARS,
THAT NUMBER IS BETWEEN 33 TO 37, HALF. AND IT’S BECAUSE WE’VE BEEN
ASKING QUESTIONS, WE’VE BEEN GETTING PEOPLE
THE SERVICES, GETTING GUNS OUT OF INDIVIDUALS’
HANDS, LOOKING AT THINGS IN CONTEXT, AND REALLY DOING WHAT WE’RE
SUPPOSED TO DO, AND THAT’S ENSURING
THE PUBLIC SAFETY. THANK YOU. MITCHELL: THANK YOU SO MUCH,
MR. THOMAS, FOR THOSE POWERFUL WORDS. AND LAST–CERTAINLY NOT LEAST–
IS ROBERTA VALENTE, WHO IS FROM THE NATIONAL
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE HOTLINE, ANOTHER PERSON I’VE WORKED WITH
FOR MANY, MANY YEARS ON THIS ISSUE. IT’S A THRILL TO HEAR
FROM YOU TODAY IN YOUR POSITION FROM THE NATIONAL HOTLINE WHERE
YOU CAN SHARE VOICES, CONCERNS, DESIRES OF
SURVIVORS AS WE MOVE FORWARD IN THIS WORK. [APPLAUSE] VALENTE: HELLO, EVERYONE. AND THANK YOU FOR SHOWING UP
FOR THIS IMPORTANT TOPIC. I SEE A LOT OF PEOPLE IN
THE ROOM THAT I’VE BEEN WORKING WITH
FOR A LONG TIME ON THIS TOPIC, WHEN THERE WERE ONLY
ABOUT 5 PEOPLE IN THE ROOM. SO IT’S REALLY NICE TO SEE THIS. IT’S REALLY NICE TO DO THIS AT
THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE, WHO’S ALWAYS BEEN
A STRONG PARTNER IN THIS FOR SO MANY YEARS. SO WHAT I’M GOING TO DO IS,
AS DARREN SAID, I WORK FOR THE HOTLINE.
WE GET THE CALLS. THEY COME FROM ALL OVER. WE’VE JUST CROSSED
THE 4 MILLIONTH CALL MARK. RIGHT NOW WE’RE ON TARGET TO GET
AROUND 500,000 CALLS A YEAR AND CONTACTS, CHATS, TEXTS. AND WHAT WE FIND IS QUITE
A NUMBER OF THESE INVOLVE FIREARMS. AND RIGHT NOW I’M GOING TO TALK
NOT EVEN ABOUT LETHALITY. YOU’RE HEARD ABOUT THAT. AND PEOPLE HAVE TALKED ABOUT
FIREARMS AND COERCIVE CONTROL. THAT’S WHAT WE HEAR, BECAUSE WE’RE TALKING TO
THE FOLKS WHO ARE GETTING THOSE EARLY WARNINGS, AND, ALSO, THE ONES WHO CAN’T
GET THE FIREARMS REMOVED JUST AS YOU’VE HEARD. AND SO IT’S REALLY IMPORTANT THAT YOU HEAR
WHAT THEY’RE ASKING. SO WE FILED A BRIEF,
AN AMICUS BRIEF, IN THE “VOISINE” CASE
IN THE U.S. SUPREME COURT. WE TRIED VERY HARD TO BE PART OF
THAT WITH OTHER ORGANIZATIONS. AND WHAT WE REALLY WERE TRYING
TO–WE’VE BEEN TRYING TO EDUCATE THE COURT, AND I THINK
WE’VE HAD AN IMPACT OVER ANY NUMBER OF CASES,
AND “CASTLEMAN,” “VOISINE,” “HELLER,” ALL OF WHICH
ARE CHALLENGES TO THE LAWS THAT YOU’VE JUST HEARD ABOUT. WHAT WE KEEP TRYING TO TELL
THE COURT IS THERE ARE LIMITLESS WAYS THAT ABUSERS USE FIREARMS TO
FURTHER CAUSE COERCIVE CONTROL OVER THEIR VICTIMS. AND THIS IS–WE WORRY
ABOUT THIS NOT JUST TO PREVENT LETHALITY. BUT IT’S BECAUSE WE DON’T WANT
TO GET THESE CALLS, CHATS, AND TEXTS ANYMORE. WE WANT PEOPLE–WE WANT
SURVIVORS TO BE ABLE TO LIVE WITHOUT FEAR, WITHOUT FEAR OF THE ABUSER
USING A FIREARM AGAINST THEM. SO… FIREARMS + DOMESTIC VIOLENCE=
MORE SEVERE ABUSE. THAT’S SOMETHING THAT WE’VE
LEARNED. IT’S NOT JUST THAT THERE ARE
THREATS. WE PULLED A 60-DAY SNAPSHOT OF
CALLERS AND CHATTERS, ISSUES RELATED TO FIREARMS
FROM JANUARY 6 TO MARCH 6, 2016. AND FOR THAT 2-MONTH WINDOW,
836 CALLERS AND CHATTERS DISCUSSED FIREARMS VIOLENCE
WITH AN ADVOCATE. THESE ARE PEOPLE WHO VOLUNTARILY
BROUGHT IT UP AND ARE ADVOCATES, HAVE LITTLE DATA VALUES
THAT THEY CAN CLICK ON. AND THEY TRY TO, DURING
THE COURSE OF A CONVERSATION, IF THEY CAN GET THERE,
THEIR FIRST MISSION IS TO WORK WITH A SURVIVOR, BUT THEIR
SECOND IS JUST TO KEEP TRACK OF WHAT
THEY’RE TALKING ABOUT SO THAT WE CAN KEEP ON TOP OF
THESE ISSUES. 836 NOTED THAT THEY DISCUSSED
FIREARMS. THAT AVERAGES ABOUT 14 CALLERS
OR CHATTERS PER DAY. THOSE ARE THE ONES WHO TALK
ABOUT IT. I WANT TO TELL YOU JUST
ONE THAT I HEARD ABOUT, A WOMAN–CONTACTED US BY CHAT
AND SAID HER ABUSER HAD SO MANY FIREARMS,
SHE’S LOST COUNT. AND SHE SAID HE LIKED CARRYING
THEM AROUND. SO MUCH SO THAT HE INVENTED
AND SEWED A VEST FOR HIMSELF SO HE COULD CARRY
AT LEAST 20 AROUND WITH HIM AT ANY GIVEN TIME. SHE LIVED IN A TRAILER WITH HIM,
DOWN A DIRT ROAD. THERE WERE TWO CARS,
BUT SHE SAID SHE COULDN’T OUTDRIVE HIM AND HE COULD STILL SHOOT
AT HER. SHE WAS ABSOLUTELY TRAPPED. AND, YOU KNOW, THERE WAS NOT
MUCH WE COULD OFFER HER, BECAUSE SHE’D CALLED
LAW ENFORCEMENT. SHE CALLED LOCAL
LAW ENFORCEMENT. WE GAVE HER THE ATF NUMBER. AND SHE SAID,
“I CALLED THAT, TOO.” SO I JUST WANT TO LEAVE THAT
THERE, THAT WE GET A LOT OF CALLERS WHO TELL US
JUST HOW HARD IT IS TO GET HELP. AND WHAT DAVE JUST SAID IS
SO IMPORTANT. WE REALLY HAVE TO MAKE THIS
A PRIORITY FOR LAW ENFORCEMENT TO UNDERSTAND THAT WE
CAN PREVENT SOMETHING FAR WORSE. IMAGINE THAT GUY WALKING AROUND
NOW WITH HIS 20 FIREARMS IN HIS
SPECIALLY-CONSTRUCTED VEST. BUT OVERALL, WHAT WE FOUND WHEN
WE LOOKED AT THIS DATA WAS THAT THEY ALSO REPORTED A LOT MORE
SEVERE ABUSE THAN OUR AVERAGE CHATS, CALLS,
OR TEXTS. SO WHEN THEY MENTION “FIREARMS,”
WE WERE ALSO LOOKING AT MUCH HIGHER RATES OF
PHYSICAL, EMOTIONAL, SEXUAL, AND ECONOMIC ABUSE. AND FIREARMS,
I WANT TO REITERATE, ARE NOT JUST FOR KILLING. THEY’RE USED TO THREATEN,
HARASS, AND ULTIMATELY CONTROL. WE HAVE STUDIES
THAT BACK THIS UP. IT’S NOT JUST WHAT WE HEAR
ON THE HOTLINE. THE CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL, THE INTIMATE PARTNER
VIOLENCE SURVEY FOUND THAT APPROXIMATELY 40% OF WOMEN
AND MEN HAD EXPERIENCED COERCIVE CONTROL
IN THEIR LIFETIME. WHAT SHAPE DOES THAT TAKE? ONE OF THAT ANOTHER STUDY
ILLUMINATES. A 2004 STUDY OF WOMEN IN CALIFORNIA DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
SHELTERS FOUND THAT OF WOMEN WHO HAD FIREARMS
IN THEIR HOME, 2/3 HAD A PARTNER SCARE OR THREATEN
THEM WITH A GUN. WHAT DOES COERCIVE CONTROL LOOK
LIKE WITH THAT? WE’RE GONNA HEAR
A LITTLE BIT MORE, BUT I’M GONNA TELL YOU
ONE THAT– THE FIRST TIME AN ADVOCATE TOLD
ME THIS, I JUST– I HAVE NEVER BEEN ABLE TO
FORGET IT. A WOMAN CONTACTED US AND SAID, “I CAME HOME AND FOUND
A RECEIPT ON THE KITCHEN TABLE “FOR THE PURCHASE OF A FIREARM. I LOOKED ALL OVER THE HOUSE,
AND I COULDN’T FIND IT.” THAT’S COERCIVE CONTROL. OF THE WOMEN IN THE CALIFORNIA
STUDY WHO’D SAID THEY’D BEEN THREATENED
WITH A GUN, 71% EXPLAINED THEIR PARTNER HAD SHOT AT THEM. OUR ADVOCATES HEAR EVERYTHING. THEY HEAR WHEN PEOPLE ARE
CALLING WHILE FIREARMS ARE BEING USED
AGAINST THEM. AND THERE IS NOT MUCH THAT
WE CAN DO. BUT WHEN THEY TALK TO US, HERE’S
WHAT THEY’RE TELLING US. IN THAT 60-DAY WINDOW
THAT I JUST TALKED ABOUT, 45.3% HAD CHILDREN INVOLVED. 14.7% HAD MADE OR HAD QUESTIONS
ABOUT MAKING A POLICE REPORT. 10.8% WERE BEING STALKED. WE KNOW STALKING IS A PREDICTOR
OF THAT. AND I’M GOING TO STOP NOW
BECAUSE I’VE RUN OUT OF TIME. BUT YOU’VE GOT THE STATS
RIGHT UP IN FRONT OF YOU. [APPLAUSE] MITCHELL: THANK YOU VERY MUCH,
MS. VALENTE. AND WE’D LIKE THIS TO BE
A LITTLE BIT MORE OF A CONVERSATION,
IF WE CAN DO THAT. AND SO I HAVE A MIKE. AND THERE’S ANOTHER MIKE IN
THE BACK. WE’RE HAPPY TO TAKE ANY
COMMENTS, ANY QUESTIONS, ANY REACTIONS
TO WHAT YOU’VE HEARD FROM OUR PANELISTS OR FOR ANYONE
WHO’S SPOKEN WITH US TODAY. IF YOU CAN JUST RAISE YOUR
HAND, WE’LL RUN TO YOU. DOES ANYBODY HAVE
SOME QUESTIONS? [MAN SPEAKING INDISTINCTLY] – I HAVE SOME QUESTIONS.
MITCHELL: YES. – GOOD TIMING. THANK YOU SO MUCH.
THIS WAS EXCELLENT. COMMISSIONER KECK, YOU MENTIONED
THAT SOMETIMES, THIS MIGHT PROHIBIT SOME PEOPLE
OR IMPEDE PEOPLE FROM EVEN SEEKING AN ORDER
OF PROTECTION IF THEY KNOW THE GUNS MAY BE
TAKEN AWAY. I WAS WONDERING
IF YOU COULD TALK A LITTLE BIT MORE ABOUT THAT AND WHAT ROLE THE DIFFERENT,
YOU KNOW, SERVICE PROVIDERS CAN PLAY IN ASSISTING PEOPLE
IN THAT SITUATION. KECK: YES. THANK YOU
FOR ASKING ME THAT. I THINK… I REMEMBER SPECIFICALLY
A PERSON COMING IN FOR AN INJUNCTION HEARING. AND SHE TOLD ME SHE DIDN’T WANT
THE INJUNCTION. SHE DIDN’T WANT TO GO AHEAD
WITH IT. AND IF SOMEONE DOES THAT,
I ASK WHY. YOU KNOW, “IS THERE SOMEONE
THREATENING YOU? “IS THERE A REASON WHY YOU
DON’T WANT IT? YOU SAID TWO WEEKS AGO THAT
YOU DID WANT IT.” AND SHE DID SAY
THAT SHE WAS CONCERNED THAT IF HER HUSBAND WAS ORDERED
TO SURRENDER FIREARMS, HE WOULD BASICALLY–THE REACTION
WOULD BE SHE WAS AFRAID HE WAS GONNA
KILL HER. AND I REMEMBER–SPECIFICALLY
REMEMBER ON THE RECORD SAYING, “WELL, YOU TELL ME YOU DON’T
WANT IT. “YOU TOLD ME TWO WEEKS AGO
YOU WANTED IT. “AND NOW YOU’RE TELLING ME YOU
DON’T WANT IT BECAUSE YOU THINK YOU’RE GONNA BE IN MORE DANGER.” AND I SAID TO HER,
“YOU’RE KIND OF PUTTING ME IN A DIFFICULT POSITION HERE.” AND THEN I LOOKED AT HER,
AND I THOUGHT, WELL, AND I SAID, “WELL, I THINK
YOU’RE IN A WORSE POSITION THAN I AM AND…” SO, I MEAN, THAT’S THE REALITY
OF IT. AND SO I DID SAY, OK, YOU KNOW,
“I DON’T LIKE THIS, “BUT I’LL DISMISS IT IF THAT
MAKES YOU FEEL MORE SAFE. BUT I THINK YOU HAVE TO BE AWARE
THAT THAT IS ALWAYS A CONCERN.” IN WISCONSIN
FOR HARASSMENT INJUNCTIONS, THERE’S NO SURRENDER OF FIREARMS
UNLESS THE COURT MAKES A FINDING THAT THAT PERSON IS SPECIFICALLY
LIKELY TO USE A FIREARM TO ENDANGER SOMEBODY. BUT IN DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
INJUNCTIONS, IT’S MANDATORY. AND THE SHELTERS ARE VERY GOOD
ABOUT EXPLAINING THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE TWO. MITCHELL: AND IF I COULD
ADD SOMETHING TO THAT, TOO. KECK: SURE.
MITCHELL: THANK YOU. THAT’S A REALITY FOR THOSE OF US
WHO ARE DOING THIS WORK. AND WE TRY TO ELEVATE
CONSIDERATIONS OF A SURVIVOR’S VOICE
AND AUTONOMY IN THIS PROCESS FOR THAT VERY
REASON–TO ALLOW THEIR JUDGMENT FOR WHAT’S SAFE
TO SORT OF RULE. SO WE, FOR US, IT’S A VERY
HOLISTIC THING WE LOOK AT. WE LOOK AT–GIVEN MANDATORY
PROVISIONS LIKE THAT, HOW CAN ADVOCACY SUPPORT
SURVIVORS IN DETERMINING WHETHER THEY WANT
TO GO THROUGH THE PROCESS OR LOOK FOR OTHER WAYS
TO SAFEGUARD THEMSELVES. WISCONSIN IS ONE PLACE THAT HAS
A VOLUNTARY– YOU CAN VOLUNTARILY PETITION
THE COURT. AS PART OF YOUR PETITION, YOU CAN ASK FOR GUNS
TO BE SURRENDERED. THERE ARE A COUPLE OF OTHER
PLACES THAT DO THAT AS WELL. WE LIKE THOSE FORMS, BECAUSE
IT’S NOT SOMETHING THAT’S AUTOMATIC NECESSARILY. IT’S SOMETHING THAT THE PERSON
HAS TO TAKE A POSITIVE STEP IF THEY THINK THAT THIS IS GOING
TO BE PROTECTIVE OF THEM. SO THESE CONVERSATIONS AROUND
VICTIM AUTONOMY AND VOICE, WE THINK, ARE CRITICAL, AND THEY’RE ONGOING IN OUR WORK
AS WELL. THOMAS: DARREN, THAT’S ALSO
THE AREA–PART OF–YOU KNOW, AS YOU–THE COLLABORATION,
COORDINATION, AND COMMUNICATION BETWEEN
THE DIFFERENT STAKEHOLDERS, BECAUSE, YOU KNOW, IF I HAVE
A PERSON SAYING THAT, THEN I WANT SOMEBODY WORKING
WITH ME WHO HAS A DEPTH OF KNOWLEDGE IN
LETHALITY ASSESSMENT AND SO FORTH, SO WE CAN HELP GO THROUGH WITH
THIS INDIVIDUAL THE DANGER THAT THEY MAY BE IN TO GIVE THEM CHOICES,
MORE CHOICES, AND GIVE THEM MORE INFORMATION SO THEY CAN MAKE GOOD, SOUND
CHOICES. CAMPBELL: YEAH.
AND I WOULD JUST ECHO THAT– THE NEED FOR SURVIVORS TO HAVE
INFORMED AUTONOMY, SO THEY REALLY KNOW HOW MUCH
MORE RISK THAT GUN GIVES BOTH HER AND HER
CHILDREN BEFORE, YOU KNOW, THAT KIND OF
AUTONOMY, WHICH I DEFINITELY BELIEVE IN. BUT I DO THINK IT NEEDS TO BE
INFORMED. VALENTE: OK, THAT’S GOOD. AND ONE THING THAT WE KNOW FROM
THE HOTLINE IS THAT SURVIVORS GO THROUGH STAGES BEFORE THEY
CAN TAKE ACTION. AND SO IT’S VERY IMPORTANT TO
UNDERSTAND THAT– THE BEGINNING STAGE IS
REALLY SO MUCH AN INFORMATION GATHERING STAGE, AND THE MORE THAT WE CAN PROVIDE
SURVIVORS AT THE FRONT END AND THE MORE WE LET THEM
KNOW ALL OF THEIR OPTIONS AND THE MORE WE LET THEM KNOW
THAT WE’RE STILL THERE, AND WHERE DO YOU GO WHEN YOU
START TO GET TO THE POINT WHERE YOU’VE GOTTEN ENOUGH
INFORMATION AND YOU KNOW–YOU FEEL MORE
COMFORTABLE MAKING A CHOICE AND GOING FORTH? THAT’S WHAT WE KNOW IS
SO IMPORTANT. SO SOMETIMES, YOU KNOW, WE SET
UP THESE MECHANISMS– ONE SIZE FITS ALL–AND WE SAY,
“OK, COME ON INTO COURT, AND WE’RE GOING TO IMMEDIATELY
TAKE THE GUNS AWAY,” AND WE HAVEN’T EVEN EXPLAINED
TO THE SURVIVOR THAT THAT’S A POSSIBILITY? WE HAVEN’T LET THE SURVIVOR
HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO THINK THROUGH,
“WHAT ARE THE…” YOU’RE HEARING, AND WHAT YOU
HEAR, WHAT COMMISSIONER KECK
JUST SAID, TELLS YOU. THEY SIT THERE GOING THROUGH
THE CONSEQUENCES. WHAT DOES THAT MEAN
IF I DO THIS? “I HAD JUST GOTTEN THIS
INFORMATION. I HAVE TO PROCESS THIS.” SO WE HAVE TO BUILD THAT IN,
ALSO. THAT’S SOMETHING THAT WE’VE
LEARNED IS SO CRITICALLY IMPORTANT TO HELPING
SOMEONE MAKE A SAFE, WISE,
AND EFFECTIVE DECISION. – HI. I WAS CURIOUS. I HAVE SORT OF A TWO-PART
QUESTION, BUT WHAT IS–FOR EVERYTOWN,
DO WE KNOW WHAT THE SORT OF GENERAL
GUN OWNERSHIP LEVEL PERCENT IS NATIONALLY? SO YOU MENTIONED IN, YOU KNOW,
THE NON-ABUSIVE CATEGORY, IT WAS AROUND 13%. I WONDER IF THAT’S A NATIONAL
FIGURE OF GUN OWNERSHIP. AVORE: YES. I THINK I
WAS TALKING KIND OF FAST AT THE END THERE. SO WHAT WE ACTUALLY FOUND WAS
THAT WHEN THERE WAS EVIDENCE OF A FIREARM THREAT THAT THE JUDGES ONLY ORDERED
SURRENDER OF FIREARMS EVEN IN 13% OF THOSE CASES. SO EVEN WHEN THERE WAS
ACTUAL EVIDENCE THAT A GUN WAS PRESENT,
THE JUDGES ORDERED IN 13% OF THE CASES. SO IT WASN’T A 13% OWNERSHIP
FIGURE JUST TO CLARIFY THAT. – OK. SORRY IF I GOT THE– THERE WAS ONE SLIDE– I WANTED TO FOLLOW UP ON
THAT THING. BUT, OK. GO AHEAD. THANKS. CAMPBELL: AND THAT’S A VERY
GOOD QUESTION– BECAUSE I THINK IT DEPENDS,
AS EVERYTHING DOES– WHERE YOU ARE, DA DA DA,
ALL OF THAT. AND THERE’S A LOT OF
VARIOUS DATA IN TERMS OF, IS IT HIGHER
IN URBAN AREAS? DO YOU SEPARATE OUT LONG GUNS
FROM HANDGUNS, ET CETERA AND SO FORTH. BUT I DON’T KNOW. APRIL, DO YOU KNOW IN TERMS
OF GENERAL GUN OWNERSHIP FOR MEN IN THIS COUNTRY? ZEOLI: UH, THE LAST I HEARD,
IT WAS AROUND 30%. SO… AND THOSE WHO COLLECT TEND TO
COLLECT A LOT OF GUNS, SO… VALENTE: RIGHT. THAT’S RIGHT. CAMPBELL: THAT’S PART OF
THE PROBLEM, IS THE HOMICIDE PERPETRATORS
OFTENTIMES ARE MULTIPLE GUN OWNERS. AND SO, YOU KNOW, IT’S WHETHER
OR NOT YOU PUT THE NUMBER OF GUNS OWNED,
WHAT YOUR DENOMINATOR IS. – SURE. I MEAN, THE REASON I’M
ASKING IS, REALLY, I’VE BEEN WORKING ON
THIS ISSUE IN NEW YORK CITY. AND WE HAVE MAYBE A LITTLE BIT
OF THE OPPOSITE PROBLEM OF RHODE ISLAND WHERE, IN FACT,
A LARGE MAJORITY OF THE PROTECTION ORDERS DO
REQUIRE SURRENDER. AND, IN FACT,
IT’S A SPECIFICALLY MANDATED SURRENDER PROVISION. HOWEVER, ABSOLUTELY NOTHING
HAPPENS. AND, IN FACT, IT BECOMES TOTAL
WHITE NOISE BECAUSE THEY ORDER IT REGARDLESS OF WHETHER OR NOT
THERE IS A FIREARM. SO I’M JUST TRYING TO–
I’D LOVE TO KNOW MORE ABOUT WHAT THE ACCESS TO GUNS RATE IS SO WE WOULD HAVE
SOME BETTER SENSE OF WHAT THAT MIGHT–WHAT PERCENTAGE
WE MIGHT BE LOOKING FOR. AVORE: YEAH. I KNOW THAT THERE
IS, LIKE, A NEW SURVEY ON THIS COMING OUT THAT HAS BEEN TEASED
A LITTLE BIT TO SOME MEDIA BUT HASN’T BEEN RELEASED YET. AND WHAT IT’S BASICALLY
HAS SHOWN SO FAR IS THAT GUN OWNERSHIP RATES ARE
GOING DOWN, BUT THE NUMBER OF GUNS THAT
EVERY PERSON HAS IS GOING UP. BUT, OBVIOUSLY, THAT’S GOING
TO VARY SO MUCH BY LOCALITY. LIKE, GUN OWNERSHIP RATES IN
NEW YORK CITY ARE GOING TO BE VERY DIFFERENT THAN
GUN OWNERSHIP RATES IN SYRACUSE. SO I THINK THAT WE DON’T HAVE
THAT INFORMATION AT OUR FINGERTIPS. MITCHELL: THERE’S A QUESTION
BACK HERE. HUEY: GOOD AFTERNOON. LIEUTENANT HUEY FROM THE DELAWARE
DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS. THIS SEGMENT IS
KIND OF IMPORTANT TO ME BECAUSE I WORK
IN A WOMEN’S FACILITY. AND HALF–A MAJORITY OF OUR
POPULATION SUFFER FROM SEXUAL OR MENTAL/EMOTIONAL
TRAUMA. AND A LOT OF OUR WOMEN, I DON’T
WANT TO SAY THAT THEY’RE SAFE WHILE THEY’RE INCARCERATED, BUT ONCE THEY LEAVE,
THEY GO RIGHT BACK TO THE VERY PERSON THAT’S,
YOU KNOW, HURTING THEM. AND A LOT OF THE MALES ARE,
YOU KNOW– THEY’RE PREVIOUSLY
RELEASED OFFENDERS THEMSELVES. SO THEY HAVE ACCESS TO FIREARMS. WHAT KIND OF PROGRAMS
DO YOU OFFER FOR THE WOMEN THAT ARE
INCARCERATED? BECAUSE SOME OF THEM DO FEAR
GOING BACK ON THE STREET. VALENTE: WELL, ONE OF
THE LIMITATIONS THAT WE’VE HAD IN THE PAST IN RESPONSE TO THAT
WAS WE WEREN’T ALLOWED TO USE ANY MONEY TO HELP ANYBODY
WHO WAS IN THAT POSITION BECAUSE CONGRESS HAD KIND OF
FIGURED IF SOMEBODY WAS INCARCERATED,
THEY PROBABLY HAD DONE SOMETHING SO WRONG THAT–WE
SHOULDN’T BE HELPING THEM. BUT IN 2013, THAT CHANGED. AND I THINK IT’S GOING
TO TAKE A LITTLE WHILE FOR THAT TO ROLL OUT. BUT ONE THING THAT HAS CHANGED IN THE VIOLENCE
AGAINST WOMEN ACT– THE STOP FUNDING THAT GOES OUT– IS THAT IT IS POSSIBLE FOR YOUR
STATE TO USE THOSE STOP DOLLARS TO DEVELOP PROGRAMMING TO
HELP THEM. AND I THINK
IT’S VERY INDIVIDUALIZED. I’M GOING TO GO BACK TO WHAT
I KNOW FROM THE HOTLINE. EVERYBODY’S STORY IS DIFFERENT. EVERYBODY’S EXPERIENCE IS
DIFFERENT. SOME WOMEN, IF THEY CAN GET
FIRST MONTH’S RENT, LAST MONTH’S RENT,
AND A SECURITY DEPOSIT, THEY’RE OUT OF THAT RELATIONSHIP
AND THEY’RE HOME FREE. OTHER WOMEN, IT MAY TAKE
THEM 20 MORE YEARS TO GET OUT OF THERE. SO IT’S REALLY GETTING PEOPLE
CONNECTED WITH ADVOCATES WHO KNOW ALL THE TOOLS
AND RESOURCES IN THEIR AREA. AND NOW, FINALLY, WE HAVE
A FUNDING MECHANISM SO THAT ADVOCATES CAN WORK
WITH INCARCERATED VICTIMS ON POSSIBILITIES
OF WHAT TO DO TO SAFETY PLAN WHEN THEY ARE RELEASED. CAMPBELL: AND IF I COULD ADD,
I THINK A LOT OF THE PRISONER REENTRY PROGRAMS,
THAT IT’S VERY IMPORTANT THAT THESE ISSUES,
ISSUES OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE, ARE ADDRESSED IN THEM. AND THERE’S BEGINNING TO BE
A LITTLE BIT MORE ATTENTION TO PRISONER REENTRY PROGRAMS. BUT, OFTENTIMES, THERE’S MORE
OF IT FOR MEN BECAUSE THERE ARE
MORE PRISONERS THAT ARE MEN THAT ARE BEING RELEASED. HOWEVER, AND BOTH MEN AND WOMEN
NEED ATTENTION TO DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ISSUES IN
THE PRISONER REENTRY PROGRAMS. AND A LOT OF THEM DO NOT HAVE
THAT KIND OF A COMPONENT IN WHAT THEY’RE CURRENTLY
DOING. SO IT’S REALLY, AGAIN, STATE
AND LOCAL ORGANIZATIONS REACHING OUT TO
THOSE PRISONER REENTRY PROGRAMS TO GIVE SOME GOOD INFORMATION ABOUT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
RESOURCES IN THE COMMUNITY, ET CETERA. – SO, UM, SORRY TO TAKE UP
THE MIKE. BUT, UM, JUST IN RESPONSE TO
THAT–AND, JACKIE, I DON’T KNOW IF YOU MIGHT HAVE MENTIONED
THIS, BUT THERE ARE ALSO SOME FEMALE-SPECIFIC
RISK ASSESSMENT TOOLS THAT ARE USED
FOR FEMALE DEFENDANTS. I DON’T KNOW IF YOU HAVE ACCESS
TO THOSE, BUT… HUEY: CURRENTLY THE ONLY,
I WANT TO SAY, ENTRY– AND THAT’S WHEN THEY COME INTO
BOOKING–I’M SORRY. THAT’S WHEN THEY ENTER
BOOKING AND RECEIVING, IS THE ASSESSMENT
FOR SEXUAL ASSAULT. WE DON’T CURRENTLY HAVE
AN ASSESSMENT FOR THE WOMEN THAT ARE COMING OFF THE STREET
WHO ARE ABUSED OR– THERE HAVE BEEN CASES WHERE
WE’VE ACTUALLY HAD THE PERSON THAT’S PICKING THEM
UP WHEN THEY’RE RELEASED IS THE PERSON THAT THEY DON’T
WANT TO GO TO, SO THEY’D RATHER US HOLD THEM
OVERNIGHT THAN TO RELEASE THEM. SO WE DON’T REALLY KNOW
WHAT TO DO IN THOSE SITUATIONS. – SO THIS ISN’T GOING TO HELP
ON THAT, BUT I GUESS I DID WANT TO REALLY UNDERLINE
SOMETHING THAT YOU MENTIONED, TOO, WHICH IS THAT A LOT OF
FOLKS HAVE ACCESS TO WEAPONS, WHETHER OR NOT THEY POSSESS
THOSE WEAPONS. AND I KNOW THAT’S SOMETHING
THAT JACKIE’S TALKED ABOUT. BUT I THINK, IN PARTICULAR,
FOR FOLKS WHO COME FROM URBAN AREAS THAT IS MAYBE
EVEN A BIGGER ISSUE AND THAT I’M NOT–I THINK WE
NEED TO DO A LOT MORE WORK ON STRATEGIES THAT ARE GOING
TO BE EFFECTIVE FOR REDUCING ACCESS TO FIREARMS
FOR THOSE FOLKS. MITCHELL: THAT’S PART OF
THE REASON I MENTIONED THE (D) PART, RIGHT? THE KNOWING TRANSFER OF
FIREARMS TO YOUR BUDDY OR TO WHOEVER YOU KNOW IT WAS
PROHIBITED. THANK YOU. ANY OTHER QUESTIONS? WE HAVE A COUPLE
OF MORE MINUTES. YES. LAUREN: I’LL STAND. HI.
MY NAME IS LAUREN. I’M AN INTERN HERE AT DOJ, BUT BEFORE COMING HERE, I WAS
AN ADVOCATE AT DC SAFE. AND I WORKED WITH A LOT OF
CLIENTS WHO TOLD ME STORIES OF NOT ONLY RECEIVING THREATS
FROM THEIR RESPONDENT, BUT FROM RESPONDENT’S FRIENDS,
FAMILY MEMBERS, ACQUAINTANCES SAYING, “I KNOW PEOPLE IN YOUR
NEIGHBORHOOD. “I’M GOING TO HAVE THEM KILL YOU “EVEN IF YOU GET THIS PROTECTION
ORDER. I HAVE PEOPLE THAT WILL COME
AFTER YOU.” SO WHAT SORT OF STEPS ARE BEING
TAKEN TO PROTECT PEOPLE IN THOSE SITUATIONS? AND WHAT CAN ADVOCATES DO TO
TRY TO KEEP OUR CLIENTS SAFE IN THOSE SITUATIONS? THOMAS: TO ME, THAT’S WHERE PART
OF THIS COLLABORATION, COMMUNICATION, AND COORDINATION
COMES INTO ACCOUNT. YOU KNOW, THERE SHOULD BE
DIRECT COMMUNICATION WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT INDIVIDUALS
IN THAT JURISDICTION. AND THAT’S WHERE WE REALLY
NEED TO WORK ON GETTING OUT OF OUR CARS
AND WORKING WITH THAT COMMUNITY, NOT JUST RESPONDING WHEN THINGS
GO DOWN BUT BEING AROUND ALL THE TIME
AND EVERYTHING SO PEOPLE CAN COMFORTABLY BE
ABLE TO COME TO US, AND THAT WE CAN GET THE INTEL
SO THAT WE CAN REALLY DEVISE AN EFFECTIVE WAY IN ORDER
TO STEM THAT TYPE OF THING. I MEAN, THAT INDIVIDUAL
WHO WAS BEING COERCED, THEY’RE NOT GOING TO COME
FORWARD TO GET OUR PROTECTION ORDER. THEY GOT TO LIVE THERE 24/7. AND THAT’S WHERE EVEN BEFORE
IT GETS TO THAT, WE SHOULD BE TALKING INFORMALLY
WITH OUR COMMUNITY PARTNERS, AND THAT’S A SCENARIO THAT WE
NEED TO WORK TOGETHER TO SEE HOW WE’RE GOING
TO ADDRESS THIS IN OUR NEIGHBORHOOD BECAUSE WHEN ONE PERSON SEES
THAT IT WORKS, THEY’RE GOING TO USE IT ALSO. AND ALL OF A SUDDEN, WE’VE GOT
A COMMUNITY WHERE THESE ABUSIVE TYPE OF
INDIVIDUALS JUST ARE, YOU KNOW, RUNNING THE ROOST. AND THE ONLY WAY WE CAN STOP
THEM IS THAT THERE’S GOT TO BE SOMETHING THAT THEY DON’T WANT
TO DEAL WITH WHEN IT COMES TO WHAT–THEM
GETTING IN TROUBLE AND SO FORTH. BECAUSE THEY STOP WHEN–
YOU KNOW, I LIKE TO SAY WE GOT TO MAKE THE LIGHT SO
BRIGHT THAT THE ROACHES SCURRY. AND THAT’S–YOU KNOW… AS MARK WYNN USED TO ALWAYS SAY,
YOU KNOW, A THIEF WON’T STEAL A HOT STOVE. AND WE JUST GOT TO MAKE THAT
STOVE HOT. AND WE GOT TO FIGURE OUT
HOW TO DO IT, AND JUST KEEP TRYING THINGS
UNTIL WE GET IT RIGHT, BECAUSE WHAT WE’RE DOING
RIGHT NOW IS NOT EFFECTIVE
FOR THOSE PEOPLE. VALENTE: THIS IS ROB VALENTE. I ALSO WANTED TO RESPOND TO THAT
AND SAY, THAT’S WHY IT’S SO IMPORTANT
IN A PROTECTION ORDER CASE FOR THERE TO BE
COMPLIANCE REVIEWS. YOU KNOW, TO JUST ISSUE
THE ORDER–AND MO’S LOOKING AT ME ‘CAUSE I LEARNED THIS
A LONG TIME AGO– AT THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF
JUVENILE AND FAMILY COURT JUDGES BUT IT IS SO EFFECTIVE TO HAVE
COMPLIANCE REVIEWS. AND COURT SYSTEMS
THAT ISSUE A PROTECTION ORDER AND DON’T SCHEDULE FOLLOW-UP
HEARINGS, YOU’RE JUST ASKING FOR ALL KINDS OF THINGS TO
HAPPEN. SO IT REALLY–THAT’S
AN IMPORTANT PIECE TO ADD ALSO. MITCHELL: AND THERE
ARE GOOD MODELS OUT THERE OF HOW THAT CAN BE DONE IF THERE ARE FOLKS WHO WANT
TO SHARE OR LEARN. YES? PRISCILLA? PRISCILLA:
HI. I’M HERE ON BEHALF OF COURT WATCH MONTGOMERY. AND WE MONITOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
COURT HEARINGS. SO WE TALKED ABOUT
THE IMPORTANCE OF HAVING VICTIM ADVOCATES,
BUT THE REALITY IS THAT MOST OF THE TIME THEY COME, THEY’RE JUST
REPRESENTING THEMSELVES. SO IN THOSE CASES,
WHAT ARE SOME BEST PRACTICES THAT JUDGES CAN DO TO SORT OF
INFORM AND EMPOWER SURVIVORS? KECK: THIS IS DAVE KECK. I’M NOT SURE SPECIFICALLY WHAT
YOU’RE ASKING ABOUT. ARE YOU ASKING ABOUT THE ADVOCATES BEING
IN THE COURTROOM? MITCHELL: NO. SELF-REPRESENTED
FOLKS… RIGHT? SELF-REPRESENTED FOLKS AND WHAT KIND OF PROVISIONS
OF INFORMATION, OTHER PROCESSES, MECHANISMS YOU
CAN HAVE TO HELP THEM MAKE INFORMED DECISIONS. KECK: I GUESS IN OUR COUNTY,
BEFORE WE DID ANYTHING ELSE– A COUPLE OF YEARS AFTER I WAS
COURT COMMISSIONER, I STARTED A PROGRAM THAT WAS
FUNDED BY THE BAR ASSOCIATION AND THROUGH
THE DOMESTIC ABUSE SHELTER– AND IT’S BEEN IN PLACE EVER
SINCE– WHERE WE HAVE
VOLUNTEER ATTORNEYS WHO COME IN AND REPRESENT
PETITIONERS AND DOMESTIC ABUSE INJUNCTIONS. THEY’RE STILL DOING IT.
IT DOESN’T COST ANYTHING. THERE’S JUST A GROUP
OF ATTORNEYS THAT DO THAT. NOW THAT I’M RETIRED, I’M EVEN
DOING THOSE. BUT YOUR QUESTION’S
A VERY GOOD ONE. THE REASON I DID THAT IS BECAUSE
MY BACKGROUND BEFORE THAT WAS I WAS A PUBLIC DEFENDER. AND I WAS AN ATTORNEY
TRYING LOTS OF CASES FOR A NUMBER OF YEARS. BUT WHAT OCCURRED TO ME
VERY QUICKLY WAS THAT A VICTIM OF DOMESTIC ABUSE
IN THE COURTROOM, MY COURTROOM, WHO DIDN’T HAVE AN ATTORNEY WAS
FREQUENTLY– I OBSERVED THAT THEY
WEREN’T ABLE TO EVEN GET TO THE FACTS OF
THEIR CASE BECAUSE THEY WERE PHYSICALLY INTIMIDATED BY THE
PERSON BEING IN THE COURTROOM. AND FOR ME THAT
BECAME A DUE PROCESS ISSUE VERY QUICKLY, ESPECIALLY
IF THEY HAD A DEFENSE ATTORNEY. IF THERE WAS AN ATTORNEY
THERE CROSS-EXAMINING THEM, THEY WOULD SHUT DOWN COMPLETELY. SO, I MEAN, THE SOLUTION I CAME
UP WITH WAS TO HAVE THE SHELTER– I SORT OF RECRUITED
THE ATTORNEYS TO DO IT. THEY VOLUNTEERED. THE SHELTER
SET THEM UP. I NEVER KNEW WHO WAS HIRED
TO REPRESENT THE PETITIONER OR WHO WAS THERE VOLUNTARILY,
BUT THAT’S ONE OF THE THINGS I THINK YOU CAN DO IS SEE IF
ATTORNEYS IN YOUR COMMUNITY ARE WILLING TO DO THAT. FOR THE MOST PART, THEY DON’T
TAKE A LOT OF PREPARATION. ONCE YOU’VE SORT OF
LEARNED ABOUT THE DYNAMICS, IT’S FAIRLY STRAIGHTFORWARD. BUT THE DIFFERENCE OF
A PETITIONER BEING REPRESENTED VERSUS UNREPRESENTED IS,
THERE’S NO COMPARISON. AND, LIKE I SAID, IT BECOMES
A DUE PROCESS PROBLEM IF THEY’RE ACTUALLY INTIMIDATED
AND AFRAID TO TESTIFY. AND ONE OTHER THING I’LL SAY
ABOUT THAT, IT’S SPECIFICALLY THE CASES
THAT WERE SPECIFICALLY IN MY ATTENTION WITH THE ONES
WERE– THERE HAD BEEN ABUSE FOR
A NUMBER OF YEARS, AND THEN THE PETITIONER
WAS COMING IN, SAYING, “I CAN TELL IT’S GOING
TO HAPPEN AGAIN. “HE’S STARTING TO ACT LIKE
HE ALWAYS DID WHEN HE WOULD HIT ME.” AND THE DEFENSE ATTORNEY WOULD
SAY, “DO YOU HAVE ANY BRUISES? “DO YOU HAVE ANY CUTS?
WHERE ARE YOUR PICTURES? WHAT DAMAGE DO YOU HAVE?” AND THEY COULDN’T SHOW THAT. SO I THINK IT’S VERY IMPORTANT,
IF YOU CAN, TO HAVE AN ATTORNEY PRESENT IN THOSE HEARINGS. VALENTE: AND I JUST WANT
TO ALSO–JUST– I KNOW WE’RE OUT OF TIME,
BUT WOMENSLAW.ORG. AND I THINK SHE’S IN THE BACK–
JULIA. YES. SO YOU CAN TALK TO HER. IT’S A WONDERFUL
ONLINE RESOURCE, SO THAT YOU CAN HELP WALK WOMEN
THROUGH THEIR RIGHTS WHEN THEY GO TO COURT
ABOUT MANY ISSUES, INCLUDING FIREARMS
AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. MITCHELL: THANK YOU.
AND WITH THAT, I’M GONNA SAY… CAMPBELL: AND, ALSO, IF I
COULD JUST–ONE MORE LAST WORD. THERE ARE SOME REALLY GOOD
JUDICIAL TRAININGS OUT THERE, BUT, UNFORTUNATELY, OFTENTIMES
IT’S VOLUNTARY. AND SO JUDGES HAVE A CHOICE
OF GOING TO THE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
TRAINING VERSUS THE OTHER KINDS
OF TRAINING. AND ONE OF THE THINGS WE FIND
IS THERE’S A LOT OF TURNOVER AMONGST JUDGES. OFTENTIMES PROTECTIVE
ORDER HEARINGS IS NOT THE PLUM JUDICIAL JOB IN
A COMMUNITY. SO PART OF IT IS THAT WE NEED
TO BE SURE THAT ALL JUDGES HAVE SOME OF THIS BASIC TRAINING. I KNOW CALIFORNIA HAS DONE
A REALLY GOOD JOB IN TERMS OF GUN REMOVAL
WITH DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ISSUES. BUT THAT’S THE KIND
OF THING THAT NEEDS TO BE DONE ON EVERY STATE LEVEL. AND IT DOES NEED TO
BE MANDATORY, I THINK, FOR ALL JUDGES, NOT JUST FOR THOSE
THAT CHOOSE TO GO TO IT. MITCHELL: THANK YOU… CHRISTINA: DAR–SORRY.
MITCHELL: ONE MORE LAST WORD… CHRISTINA: ONE MORE. SORRY.
MITCHELL: WE’LL DO THREE. CHRISTINA:
I’M CHRISTINA SUPINSKI WITH AEQUITAS–
THE PROSECUTORS’ RESOURCE ON VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN. AND I WANTED TO GO BACK TO ONE
OF THE THINGS THAT SHE HAD SAID AND JUST THROW
A WORD OUT THERE TO THE GROUP. INTIMIDATION IS SOMETHING THAT’S
VERY REAL FOR DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIMS. IT’S WHAT WE’RE TALKING ABOUT
HERE WITH COERCIVE CONTROL AND EVERYTHING ELSE. AND ONE OF THE THINGS THAT
ADVOCATES CAN BE DOING IN PARTNERSHIP WITH
LAW ENFORCEMENT AND PROSECUTION IS ENCOURAGING VICTIMS TO KEEP
TRACK OF WHEN A COMMUNITY MEMBER THREATENS THEM, WHEN
THE OFFENDER THREATENS THEM. THAT’S DOCUMENTING INFORMATION
THAT CAN BE SHARED WITH LAW ENFORCEMENT AND CAN BE
USED AS EVIDENCE IN TRIALS TOWARDS CHARGES OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE BUT ALSO TOWARDS CHARGES OF
INTIMIDATION THAT CAN ALSO GO TOWARDS
FORFEITURE BY WRONGDOING. SO THERE’S A LOT OF THINGS THAT
CAN REALLY BE HAPPENING AND SHOULD BE HAPPENING. AND THAT LINKAGE
WITH PROSECUTORS, I THINK, IS KEY. SO SORRY FOR THAT LITTLE
INTERRUPTION. MITCHELL: THANK YOU, CHRISTINA. SO PLEASE JOIN ME IN THANKING
OUR PANEL FOR THEIR AMAZING JOB THEY DID AND ALL
THE INFORMATION THEY SHARED. AND BACK TO BEA. HANSON: THANKS, EVERYBODY. THANK
YOU, DARREN, FOR MODERATING. AND THANK YOU ALL, PANELISTS,
FOR BEING HERE. AND IT’S BEEN
A GOOD CONVERSATION. AND WE MIGHT HAVE A LITTLE
BIT OF TIME AT THE VERY END. OR MAYBE PEOPLE CAN HANG OUT
AT THE END. BUT BEFORE WE END, WE’RE REALLY,
REALLY THRILLED. YOU KNOW, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT
WE’VE WANTED TO DO IS TO MAKE SURE THAT WE
HAVE INFORMATION AND UP-TO-DATE RESOURCES AND A PLACE TO GET
THOSE RESOURCES FOR BOTH COMMUNITY MEMBERS
AND PROFESSIONALS THAT ARE ADDRESSING ISSUES OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND FIREARMS. SO I MENTIONED EARLIER
THAT WE’RE LAUNCHING A WEBSITE. AND SO I’M JUST THRILLED
TO INVITE KRISTINE LIZDAS, WHO’S THE LEGAL POLICY DIRECTOR FOR THE BATTERED WOMEN’S JUSTICE
PROJECT, TO TALK A LITTLE ABOUT THE NEW RESOURCE CENTER. THE BWJP HAS TAKEN ON THIS
YEOMAN’S TASK OF IMPLEMENTING THESE NEW RESOURCES, WORKING WITH A NUMBER OF PEOPLE
HERE, CALLED SAFE FAMILIES,
SAFER COMMUNITIES. KRISTINE. [APPLAUSE] LIZDAS: YEAH, SO WE’VE SPENT
QUITE A BIT OF TIME TALKING ABOUT A LOT OF THE CHALLENGES
THAT ARE IN FRONT OF US AS WE DEVELOP RESPONSES TO
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE-RELATED FIREARM-, HOMICIDE-,
AND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE-RELATED FIREARM VIOLENCE. BUT ONE SORT OF RAY OF SUNSHINE
IS WE DO GET TO ANNOUNCE THE LAUNCHING OF THE SAFER FAMILIES,
SAFER COMMUNITIES WEBSITE, WHICH IS AT
PREVENTDVGUNVIOLENCE.ORG, AS PART OF A PROJECT OF THE NEW NATIONAL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
AND FIREARMS RESOURCE CENTER, WHICH WILL BE MANAGED BY THE BATTERED WOMEN’S
JUSTICE PROJECT WITH MULTIPLE PROJECT PARTNERS. SO THIS WEBSITE WAS DEVELOPED
WITH THE INTENT TO PROMOTE EFFORTS BY COMMUNITIES
TO PREVENT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE-RELATED
HOMICIDES THROUGH
COMPREHENSIVE IMPLEMENTATION AND ENFORCEMENT OF
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE-RELATED FIREARM PROHIBITIONS AT ALL
LEVELS OF GOVERNMENT. AND THE PROJECT THAT BUILT THIS
WEBSITE AND THE COMBINATION OF
PARTNERS THAT BUILT THIS WEBSITE REALLY INTENDED TO
PROVIDE COMMUNITIES AND PROMOTE COMMUNITIES’ EFFORTS
BY DOING 4 MAIN FUNCTIONS. SO I WANT TO INTRODUCE SOME OF
THE FUNCTIONS THAT THIS WEBSITE OFFERS
VERY QUICKLY. AND I’M HOPING PEOPLE WILL GO
BACK AND SPEND MORE TIME ON THE WEBSITE, AS WE’LL
ONLY BE ABLE TO COVER IT REALLY BRIEFLY NOW. BUT IF WE GO UNDER THE TOP RIGHT
NAVIGATION TAB UNDER “RESOURCES”
TO “COMMUNITY STRATEGIES”… THIS IS KIND OF… IF WE GO ONE MORE DOWN
TO “COMMUNITY…” YES, THAT ONE. “COMMUNITY STRATEGIES.” CLOSE. I COULD START
WITH “COMMUNITY SPOTLIGHTS.” [INDISTINCT CHATTER] THE COMMUNITY SPOTLIGHTS
IS ONE OPPORTUNITY TO HIGHLIGHT THOSE COMMUNITIES
THAT HAVE TAKEN RISKS AND DONE REALLY STRONG WORK
AROUND DOMESTIC VIOLENCE. AND FOR THOSE
OF US ORGANIZATIONS THAT PROVIDE TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE
TO COMMUNITIES AROUND IMPLEMENTATION AND ENFORCEMENT OF FIREARM
PROHIBITION– AND WHAT WE HEARD EVEN DURING
THESE TWO HOURS– IS THAT A LOT OF IMPLEMENTATION
AND ENFORCEMENT BARRIERS ARE VERY JURISDICTION-SPECIFIC,
VERY LOCALIZED, AND REQUIRE A PRETTY INTENSIVE AND DETAILED TYPE
OF TECHNICAL ASSISTANCE. SO COMMUNITIES,
SUCH AS WISCONSIN, THAT HAVE ALREADY IMPLEMENTED
REALLY COMPREHENSIVE RESPONSES ARE IN VERY GOOD POSITIONS TO
INFORM THE EFFORTS GOING ON IN OTHER COMMUNITIES. SO IN THIS PART OF THE WEBSITE,
WE HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO HIGHLIGHT THOSE COMMUNITIES THAT ARE DOING
REALLY STRONG WORK. AND WE HOPE TO CONTINUE TO
BUILD THIS LIST AND PROVIDE VERY DETAILED
OVERVIEWS AND EXPLANATIONS OF JUST HOW
THESE COMMUNITIES HAVE ENHANCED THEIR FIREARM
RESPONSES AND RESPONSES TO DOMESTIC
VIOLENCE-RELATED HOMICIDE. NOW IF GO UNDER “RESOURCES,”
TO THE SECOND– TO “COMMUNITY STRATEGIES.” MUCH OF THE WORK THAT WE’VE DONE UNDER OUR TECHNICAL
ASSISTANCE PROJECT WE HAVE FOCUSED INTO…5 MAIN
STRATEGY AREAS. AND THIS WEBSITE PROVIDES
A COMPREHENSIVE, STEP-BY-STEP EXPLORATION OF WHAT THOSE
STRATEGIES AND THOSE 5 AREAS
OF STRATEGIES ARE. WE RECOMMEND VERY SPECIFIC
STRATEGIES FOR THE CIVIL LEGAL SYSTEM;
FOR THE CRIMINAL LEGAL SYSTEM; WHEN WORKING WITH
THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT; STRATEGIES SPECIFICALLY DIRECTED
AT PREVENTING PURCHASE OF FIREARMS; AND HOW TO BETTER USE
RESEARCH AND DATA COLLECTION TO PROMOTE BETTER POLICIES
LOCALLY. SO WE CAN LOOK–IF WE
LOOK UNDER JUST THE “CRIMINAL STRATEGIES”
ITSELF… AND IF WE SCROLL ALL THE WAY
TO THE BOTTOM… HERE IS WHERE THE WEBSITE OFFERS
SORT OF STEP-BY-STEP ALONG THE CRIMINAL LEGAL PROCESS SPECIFIC STRATEGIES,
SPECIFIC APPROACHES TO TAKE AT THESE DIFFERENT AREAS OF
THE CRIMINAL LEGAL RESPONSE. THROUGHOUT THIS PROJECT, WE’VE
BEEN COLLECTING INFORMATION AND DATA, FORMS, PROTOCOLS,
POLICIES, WORKSHEETS, SPECIFIC TOOLS THAT COMMUNITIES
UTILIZE THAT WILL BE MADE– THAT ARE AND WILL BE MADE
AVAILABLE BY CLICKING ON
THOSE INDIVIDUAL SITES. WE ALSO USE
THE COMMUNITY SPOTLIGHTS IN THE WEBSITE TO HIGHLIGHT JUST
HOW TO IMPLEMENT THE SPECIFIC CRIMINAL STRATEGIES THAT ARE DETAILED
IN THIS WEBSITE. THEN, IF WE CAN GO BACK
UP TO–VERY BRIEFLY– TO THE NEWS SECTION, WHICH IS TO THE RIGHT, YES,
OF THE “RESOURCES.” THIS PART OF THE WEBSITE,
WE ARE TRYING TO MAKE SURE THAT COMMUNITIES THAT ARE SEEKING
TO RESPOND STRONGLY TO FIREARM-RELATED HOMICIDE
AND VIOLENCE KNOW WHAT THE MOST UP-TO-DATE NEWS
AND RELEVANT POLICY DEVELOPMENTS ARE FOR THEIR
SPECIFIC COMMUNITIES. AND ONE MORE SECTION. IF YOU’LL GO BACK
TO “RESOURCES”… AND TO THE “RESEARCH INFORMATION
AND TOOLS.” RELATED, WE WANT TO MAKE SURE
THAT WE’RE PROVIDING COMMUNITIES THE STATE OF–SORT OF A STATE
OF KNOWLEDGE REGARDING WHAT WE KNOW IN TERMS OF
LEGAL SYSTEM RESPONSES AND WHAT WE KNOW ON THE TOOLS
FOR ADVOCATES AND STRONG ADVOCACY’S RESPONSES AS WELL AS WHAT’S THE MOST
WE KNOW FROM THE RESEARCH THAT WE HAVE NOW. AND WE’VE BEEN WORKING CLOSELY
WITH DR. ZEOLI IN BEING ABLE TO PROVIDE THOSE
RESEARCH SUMMARIES TO ALL OF US. WE HAVE A PLANNED WEBSITE
EXPANSION ALREADY THAT WE HAVE BEGUN. WE ARE INTENDING TO HAVE
A LIBRARY OF FORMS, POLICIES, AND PROTOCOLS AND RESOURCES
FOR COMMUNITIES THAT REALLY HELP IN THE NITTY GRITTY
IMPLEMENTATION AND ENFORCEMENT OF A LOT OF THE ISSUES THAT YOU,
AS AUDIENCE MEMBERS, HAVE BROUGHT UP TO THE PANELISTS
AND THAT THE PANELISTS ADDRESS. OR WHAT’S VERY SPECIFIC
PROBLEM SOLVING IN THIS AREA? WE’RE ALSO INTENDING TO PROVIDE
SOME INTERACTIVE TOOLS TO ALLOW COMMUNITY MEMBERS–
BOTH ADVOCATES AND PROFESSIONALS AND OTHER INTERESTED
COMMUNITY MEMBERS– TO USE ONLINE INTERACTIVE TOOLS
TO BE ABLE TO DEVELOP VERY LOCALIZED AND SPECIFIC
SOLUTIONS USING THE 5 AREAS OF COMMUNITY STRATEGIES THAT ARE
ALREADY OUTLINED THERE. AND WE ARE DELIGHTED THAT WE
WILL BE WORKING WITH A LOT OF EXTREMELY TALENTED AND DEDICATED
EXPERTS IN THE FIELD IN WHAT YOU HAVE SEEN IN
THE WEBSITE SO FAR AND THE WEBSITE BUILD-OUT AS WELL AS THE NEW NATIONAL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
AND FIREARMS RESOURCE CENTER WE HAVE HAD A CLOSE RELATIONSHIP
WITH THE NATIONAL COUNCIL OF JUVENILE
AND FAMILY COURT JUDGES. THEY’VE BEEN OUR PRIMARY PROJECT
PARTNER. AND WE’RE GRATEFUL
FOR EVERYTHING THAT THEY’VE CONTRIBUTED TO
THIS WEBSITE. WE’VE HAD A SUBSTANTIAL
CONTRIBUTION FROM THE INTERNATIONAL
ASSOCIATION OF CHIEFS OF POLICE, AS THEY’VE HELPED US IDENTIFY
OUR COMMUNITY STRATEGIES, WHAT DIFFERENT COMMUNITIES ARE
DOING STRONG WORK. AND WE’VE ALSO WORKED
CLOSELY WITH AEQUITAS– THE PROSECUTORS’ RESOURCE
ON VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN– IN PUTTING TOGETHER
THIS WEBSITE. AND MOVING FORWARD, WE’RE
EXCITED TO ANNOUNCE THAT WE’LL ALSO BE WORKING WITH THE NATIONAL INDIGENOUS
WOMEN’S RESOURCE CENTER. WE’LL BE WORKING WITH THE NATIONAL
NETWORK TO END DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND SPECIFICALLY LOOKING AT
PARTNERSHIPS WITH WOMENSLAW.ORG. WE’LL BE WORKING WITH THE LAW
CENTER TO PREVENT GUN VIOLENCE AS AN ORGANIZATION
THAT DOES EXTREMELY CAPABLE LEGISLATIVE AND LEGAL TRACKING OF DOMESTIC VIOLENCE-RELATED
GUN LAWS. DR. APRIL ZEOLI HAS GRACIOUSLY
AGREED TO WORK WITH THE NATIONAL RESOURCE
CENTER TO HELP ALL OF US STAY AS ON TOP OF
THE BEST RESEARCH OUT THERE AND WHAT THE RESEARCH MEANS FOR
OUR INTERVENTIONS AND OUR WORK. AND WE’RE ALSO WORKING AS WE’RE
DEVELOPING– WORKING WITH
SPECIFIC COMMUNITIES IN THE IMMEDIATE AFTERMATH
OF FIREARM-RELATED VIOLENCE. WE’LL BE WORKING END DOMESTIC ABUSE WISCONSIN
AND SAFE HORIZON IN DEVELOPING THESE STRATEGIES. SO WE’RE VERY EXCITED ABOUT
THE WEBSITE. WE’RE VERY EXCITED ABOUT THE EXISTING AND PLANNED
BUILD-OUT OF THIS WEBSITE. WE’RE LOOKING FOR A LOT OF
FEEDBACK ON HOW AND WHY AND WHEN THIS WEBSITE IS USEFUL. WE HOPE THAT YOU WILL VISIT IT
OFTEN. WE HOPE THAT YOU’LL SIGN UP FOR
OUR PROJECT NEWSLETTER, FOR ANNOUNCEMENTS ABOUT
PROJECT UPDATES, AND, AGAIN, CONSTANT FEEDBACK ON
HOW, WHEN, WHY, WHERE THIS WEBSITE IS MOST USEFUL
TO YOU. SO THANK YOU VERY MUCH. [APPLAUSE] HANSON: THANKS, KRISTINE. AND I THINK IT’S JUST SO AMAZING
JUST TO SEE ALL OF THE DIFFERENT PEOPLE AND
ORGANIZATIONS COMING TOGETHER TO CREATE THE NATIONAL DOMESTIC VIOLENCE
AND FIREARMS RESOURCE CENTER. AND I HOPE PEOPLE COME
AND VISIT IT OFTEN AND MAKE COMMENTS,
AS THEY’RE CONTINUING TO EXPAND IT AND IMPROVE IT. WE HAVE A COUPLE OF MINUTES. DOES ANYBODY HAVE ANY BURNING
OR SMOLDERING QUESTIONS THAT THEY WANT TO ASK
OR COMMENTS THEY WANT TO MAKE? LIBERTY PROBABLY DOES.
HA HA! [EXCITED CHATTER] OK. WELL, SO THEN I WANT TO
THANK EVERYBODY FOR BEING HERE. I ALSO WANT TO GIVE A SHOUT OUT
TO ADRENIS HOOKS OVER HERE, WHO HELPED COORDINATE THIS
PANEL TODAY. SO THANK YOU, ADRENIS, FOR
TAKING THE LEAD. I COULD START ON A SLIPPERY
SLOPE OF THANKING MANY OTHER OVW STAFF, BUT I’M GONNA STOP THAT. BUT I JUST WANT TO JUST, YOU
KNOW, THANK ALL OF THE OVW STAFF WHO HELPED PUT THIS TOGETHER BUT ALSO WHO ARE WORKING WITH US
EACH AND EVERY DAY. I DO WANT TO GIVE A SHOUT OUT
TO NADINE NEUFVILLE, THOUGH, WHO HAS REALLY BEEN DOING OUR
HOMICIDE AND FIREARMS STUFF, SITTING NEXT TO LIBERTY OVER
THERE. SO THANKS, NADINE. UM… [APPLAUSE] AND THANKS AGAIN TO THE GREAT
PANEL, THANK YOU, DARREN, FOR PUTTING THIS ALL TOGETHER, AND THANK ALL OF YOU FOR BEING
HERE TODAY BUT, MOST IMPORTANTLY, FOR ALL
THE AMAZING WORK THAT YOU DO IN COMMUNITIES ALL ACROSS
THE COUNTRY FOR JUSTICE AND FOR SAFETY
FOR ALL OF US. THANK YOU. [APPLAUSE] – DARREN, THAT WAS TERRIFIC!
THANK YOU.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *