Charles County Sheriff Troy D. Berry and the men and women of the Charles County Sheriff’s Office recently unveiled the new Domestic Violence Awareness vehicle.
The SUV will be used by members of the Domestic Violence Unit to raise awareness about the prevalence of domestic violence and help make the connection as to how people can get help, according to a news release.
The Charles County Sheriff’s Office partners directly with the Center for Abused Persons which provides critical assistance to victims of domestic violence and or sexual assault. When an officer responds to a domestic-related call for service, they are able to direct victims to CAP which refers victims to resources such as shelter, counseling, court advocacy and other programs to help break the cycle of violence.
“Our SUV — which is outfitted with information about CAP, the crisis hotline and purple ribbons — has drawn a lot of attention. Many people have stopped to talk with our officers to show their appreciation and some people share their stories about how domestic violence impacted them,” Berry (D) said in the release. “Already, this vehicle has started conversations about domestic violence and sexual assaults and it brings awareness to the Center for Abused Persons who are in a position to help in a crisis.” CAP also works with other local organizations such as Lifestyles of Maryland Inc. to help direct people to resources.
Nationwide, domestic violence affects one in four homes. Sadly, in the course of a few years, the Agency has investigated numerous crimes in which men, women and children have been killed as a result of domestic violence, Berry said. Just this year, a man shot and killed his mother-in-law, his father-in-law and then shot his son. The most recent case of attempted murder involved a mother and daughter who were stabbed multiple times by the daughter’s ex-boyfriend.
Through awareness, the sheriff’s office is committed to improving efforts to help those in crisis. “The impact domestic violence has on our children and our community as a whole is immeasurable and we are committed to improving our efforts to prevent domestic violence, respond to the needs of the victims and hold offenders accountable,” Berry said in the release.
To report domestic violence, call 911 in an emergency. The CCSO Domestic Violence Unit can be reached by calling 301-609-3274. If you or someone you know needs help, you can also call the Center for Abused Persons at 301-645-3336 which staffs a 24-hour domestic violence hotline.