|Dayrell Scriver and Amy Romesburg|
The Crane Chronicle is attempting to feature most of the cases involving domestic violence heard in court this month in Stone County as October is Domestic Violence Awareness month.
The increase in charges, filed against both men and women, have increased dramatically over the last few years.
Stone County assistant prosecutor Dayrell Scrivner handles most of the domestic assault cases filed in the county. He says the case load goes up and down, but this year the numbers have increased dramatically.
"Domestic's are on of the highest priority in our office," said Scrivner.
Amy Romesburg, who is the victim advocate for the prosecutor's office is the person that victim's interact with on a regular basis. She says some victim's tell her they want charges dropped against their abuser. "We have a zero drop police for domestic assaults in our office. I have to explain to them that's not how it works." Romesburg says at times prosecutor's have to proceed without the victim's cooperation.
"When there are kids in the home our flags go up and we know we have to step in," said Romesburg.
There is a safe house for domestic abuse victims in Stone County that is usually full. Some victims are sent to other safe house in nearby counties, according to Scrivner.
Scrivner says that his office is also there for the abuser as well. "We try to get them in programs to help end the cycle of abuse."
Domestic Violence Awareness Month evolved from the first Day of Unity observed in October, 1981 by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence. The intent was to connect battered women’s advocates across the nation who were working to end violence against women and their children. The Day of Unity soon became a special week when a range of activities were conducted at the local, state, and national levels.
These activities were as varied and diverse as the program sponsors but had common themes: mourning those who have died because of domestic violence, celebrating those who have survived, and connecting those who work to end violence.
In October 1987, the first Domestic Violence Awareness Month was observed. That same year the first national toll-free hotline was begun. In 1989 the first Domestic Violence Awareness Month Commemorative Legislation was passed by the U.S. Congress. Such legislation has passed every year since with NCADV providing key leadership in this effort.
The Day of Unity is celebrated the first Monday in October. NCADV hopes that events in communities and regions across the fifty states will culminate in a powerful statement celebrating the strength of battered women and their children.