EOPD Domestic Violence

East Orange Police Department

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  EOPD: Working To Stop Family Violence

Domestic violence is defined as abuse committed against members of the same family, a spouse, former spouse, cohabitant, former cohabitant, a person with whom the offender has had a child, or is having or has had a dating or engagement relationship regardless of sexual orientation or between children and elderly parents.

Domestic violence may begin with angry words, a shove, or a slap, and may escalate into a pattern of assaultive controlling behaviors including physical, sexual, and psychological attacks against the victim, children, property, and/or pets. 

Criminal domestic violence behaviors include hitting, choking, kicking, assault with a weapon, shoving, scratching, biting, rape, unwanted sexual touching, forcing sex with a third party, or violation of a valid Restraining Order. Degrading comments, interrogating family members, suicide threats/attempts, controlling victim’s time and activities, although not criminal, are also considered domestic violence behaviors.

Domestic violence is not an isolated, individual event. One battering episode builds on past episodes and sets the stage for future episodes. All incidents of the pattern interact with each other and have a profound effect on the victim. There is a wide range of consequences, some physically injurious and some not, but all are psychologically damaging.

Some acts of domestic violence even include sexual assault. A sexual assault may be by a stranger or a person known to the victim, including a husband, boyfriend, ex-husband, or ex-boyfriend. Sexual assault is a crime. Victims should notify the police immediately. A police officer will respond to conduct an investigation and collect evidence. Victims should keep all clothing worn during the assault and other evidence such as bed sheets. Officers will transport victims to the hospital for a free medical exam. Victims should not shower or douche before the exam.

Sexual Assault

Definition of Acquaintance/Date Rape

Acquaintance rape: is sexual assault by someone known to the victim. The offender can be anyone from the person who sacks your groceries to a relative or boyfriend.

Date rape: is, by definition, sexual assault that occurs while on a date or between persons who expect to have (or already have) an intimate relationship. According to a study done by Mary Koss (1987), more than often the rapes reported in this country are committed by someone known to the victim: a husband, boyfriend, relative, friend, friend of a friend, brief acquaintance, date, neighbor or fellow worker. Fifty-seven percent of these sexual assaults occurred on dates.

Dating violence: is more than just arguing or fighting. Dating violence is a pattern of controlling behaviors that one partner uses to get power over the other, including:

  • any kind of physical violence or threat of physical violence to get control;

  • emotional or mental abuse, such as playing mind games, making you feel crazy, or constantly putting you down or criticizing you;

  • sexual abuse, including making you do anything you don’t want to, refusing to have safer sex, or making you feel bad about yourself sexually.

Teens who abuse their girlfriends or boyfriends do the same things that adults who abuse their partners do. Teen dating violence is just as serious as adult domestic violence.

Teens are seriously at risk for dating violence. Research shows that physical or sexual abuse is a part of 1 in 3 high school relationships. In 95% of abusive relationships, men abuse women. However, young women can be violent, and young men can also be victims. Gay, lesbian, bisexual and trans teens are just as at risk for abuse in their relationships as anyone else.

Abusive relationships have good times and bad times. Part of what makes dating violence so confusing and painful is that there is love mixed with the abuse. This can make it hard to tell if you are really being abused. Here are some good questions to ask yourself.

Does your boyfriend or girlfriend:

  • act like Dr. Jeckle and Mr. Hyde, with such sudden and extreme moods he seems like two different people?

  • make fun of you, put you down, or embarrass you in front of other people?

  • have a history of bad relationships or past violence, always blame his/her problems on other people, or blame you for "making" him/her treat you badly?

  • try to get you drunk, high or messed up or try to get you alone when you don’t want to be?

  • try to control you — by being bossy, not taking your opinion seriously, making all of the decisions about who you see, what you wear, what you do, etc. ?

  • talk negatively about people in sexual ways or talk about sex like it’s a game or a contest?

Do you:

  • feel less confident about yourself when you’re with him/her?

  • have been told by people you trust that they’re worried about your safety?

  • feel scared or worried about doing or saying the wrong thing?

  • find yourself changing your behavior out of fear or to avoid a fight?

Unfortunately, without help, the violence will only get worse. If you think you might be in an abusive relationship, please call the National Domestic Violence Hotline or your local domestic violence center to talk with someone about it. If you want more information about dating violence or other resources for teens, take a look at these links.

Definition of Marital Rape

Marital rape: is the term used to describe nonconsensual sexual acts between a woman/man and her husband/wife, ex-husband/wife, or intimate long-term partner. These sexual acts can include: intercourse, anal or oral sex, forced sexual behavior with other individuals, and other unwanted, painful, and humiliating sexual activities. It is rape if one partner uses force, threats, or intimidation to get the other to submit to sexual acts.

Research has shown that this pattern of control and abuse increases in frequency and severity over time. It is estimated that one-fourth of all homicides in this country occurs within the family and one-half of these are husband-wife killings. Studies have shown that arrest, jail, probation, and Restraining Orders deter many abusers from physically abusing their partners.

If you become a victim of annoying phone calls, you should report them to the East Orange Police Department. Your phone company may be able to assist in tracking the origin of the calls if they have a police report number. If you become a victim of threatening phone calls, report them to your local police department immediately. The East Orange Police Department takes threatening calls serious, and so should you, especially if you are in a battering relationship or have been a victim of domestic violence.

Men as victims/survivors Domestic violence affects everyone. It is not color blind nor is it gender blind. Men are also victims of domestic violence and can find themselves in a relationship where they are battered. More information on men as victims/survivors.

Men as abusers Men’s violence against women includes physical violence-both sexual and non-sexual, verbal, emotional and economic abuse. There are programs available for men who have recognized their patterns of abuse and would like to address them. 

It is likely that you are abusing someone if he/she tells you that he/she is being hurt by your actions (such as slapping, pushing, grabbing) or words (through put-downs, threats or intimidation). You may not think you are an abusive person or that your words or actions aren’t enough to hurt someone. But, it is not about what you think your actions are doing or should do to your partner. What matters is how your actions affect him/her.

Ask yourself some questions:Are "YOU" The Abuser

  • Has my partner told me that my words or actions hurt him/her?

  • Has my partner asked me to stop those hurtful words or actions?

  • Have I ever used force or threats to make my partner do something that he/she didn’t want to do?

  • Have I ever used force or threats to prevent my partner from doing something he/she wanted to do?

  • Has my partner complained that I have pressured him/her into unwanted sexual activities?

  • Has my partner complained that I control or dominate his/her life in unwanted ways?

If you answered yes to any of these, you are probably engaging in a form of emotional, physical and/or sexual abuse against your partner. This does not mean you are a bad person, but it does mean that you MUST stop your abusive behavior.

Help is available, but you must be willing to:

  • Stop your abusive words and actions

  • Admit your abusive behavior to yourself and others

  • Talk about what you have done and be willing to face the consequences

This may not be easy for you. But think of the difference it could make for your partner, your family and yourself.

You are not alone and many different kinds of help are available to you in your community. The East Orange Police Department is concerned about your safety!

Typical Domestic Violence SceneWHY DON'T VICTIMS LEAVE?

National statistics suggest that individuals leave violent relationships several times before they leave for good. There are several stages victims of domestic violence may experience as they recognize the abusive situation and decide to leave. The Pyramid Of Escape helps to identify the possible stages.


Pyramid Of Escape








    Stage 1: Abuse

    The abuse stage signifies the abuse is taking place, but the individual has not necessarily identified their self as abused. Consistent abuse may lead to the next stage of denial or loss of self. At this stage, the abuse has modified the individual's personality and view of self.

    Stage 2: Denial/Loss of Self

    Denial and /or the loss of self explains the defense mechanism used toward the abuse occurring in the relationship. During this stage, many victims describe feeling as though they have lost control, have no identity, apologetic, quiet, scared, and have low self-esteem. It is not uncommon for a victim in this stage not to have identified with being in an abusive relationship.

    Lying about/Covering up the abuse:

    "I fell"
    "I was playing with the kids and...."
    "I must have bumped something"

    Denial or minimization of the abuse:
    "It really wasn't that bad."
    "It doesn't happen very often."
    "It's only a scratch."

    Self blame:
    "If I made him/her happy, they wouldn't hit me."
    "I was battered because I did something wrong."

    Refuses help:
    Makes excuses/"can't fit it into my schedule"
    Disposes of help from others (brochures/books/referrals)
    Avoids those trying to help (friends/family/etc.)

    Considers help:
    Calls a shelter or hotline for information
    Checks a website for information
    Writes down phone numbers and keeps them handy

    Seeks help:
    From friends
    From relatives
    From clergy
    From shelters/Social services
    By getting away, even for a little while
    (like going to a motel or friends house)

    Note: All these can be going on at once, they are not necessarily single steps

    Stage 3: Validation and Acknowledgment of Being Abused

    Victims are likely to acknowledge being in a violent relationship when it is identified by an outside source (family, friends, co-workers, police officers, etc.), experiencing severe physical trauma, or a combination of both. More specifically, an outside source recognized the abusive situation and the victim received reinforcement through an abusive episode. At this stage, female victims of domestic violence may begin to see themselves as "battered women."

    Stage 4: Emotional Response

    Once an individual confronts the idea of being a victim of domestic violence, there is likely an emotional struggle to follow. The emotional response is different from person to person, but may resemble the grieving process for a lost loved one. It is unknown how long someone will remain in this stage, but it enables an individual to gain motivation toward leaving the abusive relationship.

    Stage 5: Motivation

    This stage represents an individual's need to regain control of their life. Other motivations may involve the children, fear for their life, and available help.

    Stage 6: Triggering Event

    Once the victim is motivated to leave, there is most likely an event that takes place triggering the actual leaving of the relationship. This event is most likely to be a severe physical episode or fear of imminent death. In some cases, the identification of being in an abusive relationship is motivation enough to leave.

    Stage 7: Escape

    Victims in this stage have removed themselves and their identity from the relationship. Safety becomes more important and victims leave their violent relationships.



    People stay with abusive partners for many different reasons. By understanding these reasons, you can explore your options for living a violence-free life and avoid feelings of guilt and isolation.

    You fear you will be beaten more severely. Your batterer has threatened to find and kill or harm you, your children, and your family.

    You depend on the batterer for shelter, food, and other necessities.

    You have no one to talk to who understands and believes you.

    You believe your children need two parents, and you don't want to raise them alone.

    You want to keep the family together and live up to your religious commitment to remain with your partner.

    You fear that you won't be able to take care of yourself and your children alone.

    You want to stand by your partner and be loyal to the relationship.

    Your partner has threatened to commit suicide if you leave.

    You believe that things will get better.

    You believe that no one else will love you.

    You fear your family and friends will be ashamed of you.

    You feel ashamed, embarrassed, and humiliated and don't want anyone to know what is happening.

    You think others will believe that you are "low class" or stupid for staying as long as you already have.

    You believe that you need to be in a relationship to feel like a complete person.

    You fear that you will be deported or that your children will be taken out of the country.

    If you are in a same sex relationship, you fear that you will be "ousted" or that no one will believe you.

    Your job is to make the relationship work, and if it does not work, you are to blame.

    If you stay, you can "save" the batterer and help him or her get better.

    It is a myth that people don't leave violent relationships. Many leave an average of five to seven times before they are able to leave permanently. You are in greater danger from your partner's abuse when you leave. Only you can decide what is best for you and your children. Whether you decide to remain with your abusive partner or leave, it is important for you to plan for your safety.


    Have you been slapped, strangled, hit, stabbed, shot, verbally abused, sexually abused, threatened with a deadly weapon, harassed, stalked, or suffered any other form of physical violence by an intimate partner, a family member, in-law, boyfriend, girlfriend, roommate or acquaintance? There is help if you believe you are a victim of domestic violence! The East Orange Police Department Domestic will investigate cases like these. If you need to speak with a detective or victim advocate please call 973-266-5000.

The National Domestic Violence Hotline is staffed 24 hours a day by trained counselors who can provide crisis assistance and information about shelters, legal advocacy, health care centers, and counseling.

National Domestic
Violence Hotline
1-800-799-SAFE (7233)
or 1-800-787-3224 (TDD).
In Emergencies, dial 911
Now Available!
A Tool For Assessing
Compliance With VAWA
2000 Fees Requirement.
HTML version ).

East Orange Police Department: 973-266-5000

New Jersey Coalition for Battered Women

2620 Whitehorse/Hamilton Square Road
Trenton, NJ 08690
TOLL-FREE: for Battered Lesbians: 800-224-0211
(in NJ only)
Phone: 609-584-8107
FAX: 609-584-9750
TTY: 609-584-0027 (9am-5pm, then into message service)

Strengthen Our Sisters
P.O. Box U
Hewitt, N.J. 07421

sisters@warwick.net 24-Hour Hotline: 973-728-0007

African American Community African American Community

Institute on Domestic Violence in the African American Community http://www.dvinstitute.org

Nommo - Articles on womanism, female genital mutilation, interracial relationships, violence against women in general and black women. New topics and articles added often http://www.sistahspace.com/nommo/index2.html

The Rape, Abuse, Incest National Network (RAINN) will automatically transfer you to the rape crisis center nearest you, anywhere in the nation. It can be used as a last resort if people cannot find a domestic violence shelter. 1-800-656-HOPE

Visit the U.S. Department of Justice Violence Against Women Office for information and resources, including government press releases and statements. Other shelter information can be found on our Sexual Assault Resources page. For more information on domestic violence, see the Feminist Majority Foundation mediated list of Internet Resources on Violence Against Women.

Treating Domestic Violence: 
A Holistic Approach

This article first appeared in the Summer 1999 Volume 33/No. 2 magazine of Women Police. It is the official publication of the International Association of Women Police. The article was written by retired Lieutenant Richard L. Davis and edited for the magazine by Wordsmiths Inc.

Most police departments understand that police intervention is essential in cases of domestic violence, the crime that inflicts suffering and death on too many American families. Domestic violence advocates, however, must not expect the criminal justice system to resolve the problem, for law enforcement by its nature a reactive force is ill equipped to prevent crime. By the time the criminal justice system intervenes, many victims have been abused for years. 

The role of the police in domestic violence
 Police intervention is an emergency measure intended to stop violence, restore peace, and if necessary arrest a person who has violated the law. Since the police can and should be expected to offer relief to those seeking help, all officers must be trained in emergency procedures so that they can provide immediate assistance. They must also be prepared to refer victims to the appropriate agency for long-term relief. Too often victims of domestic violence confront a bewildering array of competing agencies whose policies and programs conflict with each other. Sadly, there is frequently little collaboration between agencies. In many cases the greatest service the responding officer can render the victim of domestic violence is simply to guide her to the agency that can best help. 

Involve the entire department 
Acknowledging that a problem exists is the first step in resolving the problem. If victims of domestic violence are to be helped, it is essential that police departments not choose the easy path and assign the responsibility for responding to domestic violence to an individual or squad. History demonstrates that the compartmentalization of responsibility fosters an, it's-not-my-job mentality, in those not expressly charged with the task. Thus the danger in creating a Domestic Violence Unit is that other members of the department may infer that domestic violence is the sole responsibility of the specialized unit. Proper training must involve the whole department, sworn and civilian personnel alike, and innovations must be merged with routine functions and duties. Police administrators must be careful when placing increased social responsibility on their officers. The pressure of accountability can lead to frustration, the result of the officers' feeling of helplessness in the face of complex social problems that they are unable to solve. Officers must be assured that they are not alone, that other members of the community share responsibility and can bring specialized skills to bear on the problem. 

Domestic Violence and Law Enforcement (as abusers)

Domestic Violence victims and their batterers cut across all socioeconomic, demographic and professional lines. Power and control wielded by batterers in law enforcement is an all-too-common occurrence. Conversely, law enforcement officers may also be domestic violence victims. Reflecting this prevalence, many police and sheriff departments’ internal policies and procedures now address domestic violence within their ranks. Protocols vary from department to department. More information D.V. and law enforcement.

Did you know…….

  • A woman is beaten every 15 seconds.

  • Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women between ages 15 and 44 in the United States.

  • Battered women are more likely to suffer miscarriages and to give birth to babies with low birth weights.

  • Sixty-three percent of the young men between the ages of 11 and 20 who are serving time for homicide have killed their mother’s abuser.

  • The National Domestic Violence Hotline has received more than 700,000 calls for assistance since February 1996. – National Domestic Violence Hotline, December 2001

  • Domestic violence is the second most reported crime, accounting for about 25% of violent incidents reported to the police.

  • On average a woman will be beaten 32 times before she seeks help.

  • Often a violent partner is sexually violent and inadequate.

  • Nearly one-third of American women (31 percent) report being physically or sexually abused by a husband or boyfriend at some point in their lives. –Commonwealth Fund survey, 1998

  • It is estimated that 503,485 women are stalked by an intimate partner each year in the United States. – National Institute of Justice, July 2000

  • Estimates range from 960,000 incidents of violence against a current or former spouse, boyfriend, or girlfriend each year to 4 million women who are physically abused by their husbands or live-in partners each year. – Violence by Intimates: Analysis of Data on Crimes by Current or Former Spouses, Boyfriends, and Girlfriends, U.S. Department of Justice, March, 1998

  • Studies show that child abuse occurs in 30-60% of family violence cases that involve families with children. – "The overlap between child maltreatment and woman battering." J.L. Edleson, Violence Against Women, February, 1999

  • While women are less likely than men to be victims of violent crimes overall, women are 5 to 8 times more likely than men to be victimized by an intimate partner. – Violence by Intimates: Analysis of Data on Crimes by Current or Former Spouses, Boyfriends, and Girlfriends, U.S. Department of Justice, March, 1998

  • Violence by an intimate partner accounts for about 21% of violent crime experienced by women and about 2 % of the violence experienced by men. – Violence by Intimates: Analysis of Data on Crimes by Current or Former Spouses, Boyfriends, and Girlfriends, U.S. Department of Justice, March, 1998

  • In 92% of all domestic violence incidents, crimes are committed by men against women. – Violence Against Women, Bureau of Justice Statistics, U.S. Department of Justice, January, 1994

  • Of women who reported being raped and/or physically assaulted since the age of 18, three quarters (76 percent) were victimized by a current or former husband, cohabitating partner, date or boyfriend. – Prevalence Incidence, and Consequences of Violence Against Women: Findings from the National Violence Against Women Survey, U.S. Department of Justice, November, 1998

  • In 1994, women separated from their spouses had a victimization rate 1 1/2 times higher than separated men, divorced men, or divorced women. – Sex Differences in Violent Victimization, 1994, U.S. Department of Justice, September, 1997

  • In 1996, among all female murder victims in the U.S., 30% were slain by their husbands or boyfriends. – Uniform Crime Reports of the U.S. 1996, Federal Bureau of Investigation, 1996

  • 31,260 women were murdered by an intimate from 1976-1996. – Violence by Intimates: Analysis of Data on Crimes by Current or Former Spouses, Boyfriends, and Girlfriends, U.S. Department of Justice, March, 1998

  • A child’s exposure to the father abusing the mother is the strongest risk factor for transmitting violent behavior from one generation to the next. – Report of the American Psychological Association Presidential Task Force on Violence and the Family, APA, 1996

  • Forty percent of teenage girls age 14 to 17 report knowing someone their age who has been hit or beaten by a boyfriend. – Children Now/Kaiser Permanente poll, December, 1995

  • Females accounted for 39% of the hospital emergency department visits for violence-related injuries in 1994 but 84% of the persons treated for injuries inflicted by intimates.– Violence by Intimates: Analysis of Data on Crimes by Current or Former Spouses, Boyfriends, and Girlfriends, U.S. Department of Justice, March, 1998

  • Family violence costs the nation from $5 to $10 billion annually in medical expenses, police and court costs, shelters and foster care, sick leave, absenteeism, and non-productivity. – Medical News, American Medical Association, January, 1992

  • Husbands and boyfriends commit 13,000 acts of violence against women in the workplace every year.– Violence and Theft in the Workplace, U.S. Department of Justice, July, 1994

  • The majority of welfare recipients have experienced domestic abuse in their adult lives and a high percentage are currently abused. – Trapped by Poverty, Trapped by Abuse: New Evidence Documenting the Relationship Between Domestic Violence and Welfare, The Taylor Institute, April, 1997

  • One in five female high school students reports being physically or sexually abused by a dating partner. – Massachusetts Youth Risk Behavior Survey (YRBS), August 2001

EOPD Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence is the physical, emotional, psychological and or sexual abuse of one person by another with whom they have a relationship. Abusers use violence to gain power and control over their partners. Violence is never an appropriate expression of anger. The abuse can range from verbal "put-downs" to homicide.

Victims have specific rights under the law for Domestic Violence some of which are the following:

  • You have the right to go to court to get an order called a temporary restraining order (TRO) which may protect you from more abuse by your attacker. The kinds of things a judge can order in a TRO may included the following....

  • Your attacker is temporarily forbidden from entering the home you live in.

  • Your attacker is temporarily forbidden from having contact with you or your relatives

  • Your attacker is temporarily forbidden from bothering you at work

  • Your attacker has to pay temporary child support or support to you.

  • You will be given temporary custody of your children.

  • Your attacker will pay you back any money you have spent for medical treatment or repairs because of the violence.

You also have the right to file a criminal complaint against your attacker if you wish. In some circumstances that may be done by the police department responding to the scene of a domestic violence call.

Are You Abused?

If you are uncertain whether you or your children are being abused, take a moment to answer the following questions:

Does the person you love…

  • Intimidate you, make you feel isolated or alone

  • Frighten you with his/her temper

  • "Track" all of your time

  • Constantly accuse you of being unfaithful

  • Discourage your relationships with family and friends

  • Prevent you from working or attending group meetings or school

  • Criticize you for little things such as your cooking or appearance

  • Anger easily when drinking alcohol or taking drugs

  • Control all the finances and force you to account in detail for what you spend

  • Humiliate or degrade you in front of others by name-calling, putdowns, or accusations

  • Make frequent threats to withhold money, have an affair, or take away the children

  • Destroy personal property or sentimental items

  • Hit, punch, slap, kick, restrain, bite or throw things at you or the children

  • Use, or threaten to use, a weapon against you

  • Threaten to hurt you or the children

  • Force you to engage in sex against your will

Do you…

  • Give in because you are afraid of your partner’s reaction

  • Apologize to yourself or others for your partner’s behavior when you are treated badly

  • Experience a pattern of violence

If you answered "yes" to even a few of these questions, it’s time to get help!

There are no easy answers, but there are things you can do to protect yourself. The most important step is not ignoring the problem.


The Duluth Wheel map of violent and non-violent behavior was devised by the Duluth Domestic Abuse Intervention Project, Duluth, Minnesota, USA, as part of its program to help men convicted of domestic assault to modify their abusive behavior toward mutual co-operation with others. The program is facilitated by a group of peers who use the Wheel's "map" to help participants identify their own violent behaviors, who consistently remind participants of their responsibility for violence, and who model alternative behaviors and alternative solutions to conflict.

The "MAP" divides violence into eight sectors: coercion and threats; intimidation; economic abuse; gender-privilege; isolation; using children; minimizing, denying and blaming. The respective target behavior for each sector is: negotiation and fairness; non-threatening behavior; economic partnership; respect; shared responsibility; trust and support; responsible parenting; honesty and accountability.



  Using coercion and threats

  Negotiation and fairness

  • making and/or carrying out threats
    to do something to hurt

  • threatening to leave her, to commit suicide, to report her to welfare

  • making her drop charges

  • making her do illegal things 

  • seeking mutually satisfying resolutions to conflict

  • accepting change 

  • being willing to compromise

  Using intimidation

  Non-threatening behavior

  • making her afraid by using looks, actions, gestures smashing things

  • destroying her property

  • abusing pets

  • displaying weapons (such as knives)

  • talking and acting so that she feels safe and comfortable expressing herself and doing things

  Using economic abuse

  Economic partnership

  • preventing her from getting or keeping a job

  • making her ask for money

  • giving her an allowance

  • taking her money

  • not letting her know about or have access to family income 

  • making money decisions together

  • making sure both partners benefit from financial arrangements

  Using emotional abuse


  • putting her down

  • making her feel bad about herself - calling her names

  • making her think she's crazy

  • playing mind-games

  • humiliating her

  • making her feel guilty 

  • listening to her non-judgmentally

  • being emotionally affirming and understanding

  • valuing opinions

  Using gender privilege

  Shared responsibility

  • treating her like a servant

  • making all the big decisions

  • acting like the 'master of the house'

  • being the one to define male and female roles

  • mutually agreeing on a fair distribution of work

  • making family decisions together

  Using isolation

  Trust and support

  • controlling what she does, who she sees and talks to, what she reads, where she goes

  • limiting her outside involvement

  • using jealousy to justify actions

  • supporting her goals in life

  • respecting her right to her own feelings, friends, activities and opinions

  Using children 

  Responsible parenting

  • making her feel guilty about the children

  • using the children to relay messages 

  • using visitation to harass her

  • threatening to take the children away 

  • sharing parental responsibilities

  • being a positive non-violent role model for the children

  Minimizing, denying and blaming

  Honesty and accountability

  • making light of the abuse and not taking her concerns about it seriously

  • saying the abuse didn't happen

  • shifting responsibility for abusive behavior

  • saying she caused it

  • accepting responsibility for self 

  • acknowledging past use of violence

  • admitting being wrong

  • communicating openly and truthfully

Domestic Violence Safety Plan

A Protection Order is an important part of a safety plan, but it also is important that you take other steps to remain safe.

  • Keep a bag packed and include your important papers. If you have to leave quickly, it will be ready.

  • Keep a written log of any contact, harassment or abuse, including date and time of incidents and witnesses. This information will be helpful if you file a police report.

  • Save answering machine tapes, caller ID records, or call traces. They can be used to substantiate your complaint.

  • Let neighbors, co-workers, and friends know what is going on so they can keep an eye on you.

  • Don't be embarrassed! Keeping the adverse party's behavior a secret could be dangerous for others as well as yourself.

  • Keep a copy of your protection order at all the places listed. Give a copy to friends, family, neighbors and co-workers.

  • Once the adverse party is out of the residence, change the locks!

  • Keep the exterior of you home well-lit and trim any shrubs.

  • Change your daily habits. Take new routes to work, try a new supermarket. Don't make it easy to be followed.

  • DO NOT meet with the adverse party, even if that person promises to return belongings or to resolve differences.

  • Always ask for a police escort to retrieve belongings or return property.

  • If you can't avoid an attack, try to stay out or get out of the kitchen, bathroom, garage, or any place where there are sharp or heavy objects that can be used as weapons.

  • Know the resources in your community for emergency shelter, information and support. Keep phone numbers on a small card that you can carry with you at all times.

    Why Get Help?  The Danger is Real
    : If you are controlling or have a controlling partner, don't ignore these behaviors.  They are learned behaviors that one person uses to intimidate and manipulate.  They are destructive and dangerous.  Every year, thousands of women are seriously hurt or killed by their husbands or partners.

    If the abuse continues without outside help, the abusing partner may risk being arrested, going to jail, or losing the relationship. 


       What Hurts You Hurts Your Children: Children get hurt when they see their parents being yelled at, pushed or hit.  They may feel scared and ashamed or think they caused the problem.  Children grow up learning that it's okay to hurt other people or let other people hurt them.  A third of all children who see their mothers beaten develop emotional problems.  Boys who see their fathers beat their mothers are ten times more likely to be abusive in their adult intimate relationships. The domestic violence service recognizes that a child living in an environment where domestic violence occurs is an abused child.

    Not all children are affected by domestic violence in the same way. It can impact on every aspect of a child's life and behavior. Children may become; fearful, withdrawn, anxious and confused; suffer from disturbed sleep, crying for what looks like no reason at all, difficulties at school and problems in making friends. Children often feel caught in the middle between their parents, and find it difficult to talk to either of them. Adolescents may act out or exhibit risk-taking behaviors such as drug and alcohol use, running away, prostitution, pregnancy or criminal behavior. Young men may try to protect their mothers or become abusive to their mothers. Children may also be hurt trying to stop the violence and intervening between their parents.

    If you see these signs in a child you know , Please let someone know in the proper agencies  before this child gets injured more or even worse killed. let us ban together to put an end to this madness and break the cycle.


       Everyone Has the Right to Feel Safe in a Relationship: Domestic violence hurts all family members.  When a person is abusive, he or she eventually loses the trust and respect of his or her partner.  Abused partners are afraid to communicate their feelings and needs.  With help, people who are abusive can learn to be non-violent.



    "Each year, 1.4. million Americans are stalked, and more than half of stalking victims are women, according to a U.S. Department of Justice study released in November 1997-" (Tjaden, Patricia, Ph.D. and Thoennes, Nancy, Ph.D., "Stalking in America: Findings from the National Violence Against Women Survey).

    Below are suggested ways to handle the crime of stalking by an estranged partner:

  • Be aware of your surroundings at all times, especially if the person stalking you has a history of haven beaten you in the past. The most dangerous time is not staying in a violent relationship, but in leaving the violent relationship.

  • Always watch to see if you are being followed. If you are being followed, go to the nearest police substation. Fire stations and convenience stores are also staffed 24 hours a day and will usually have people around.

  • Make reports to the police, even if you don't prosecute. This will provide documentation for pursuing criminal charges later if the harassment and stalking continue. A police report must be initiated before stalking charges can be filed.

  • Record your telephone conversations. Keep all harassing messages left on your answering machine.

  • Send a clear message that the relationship is over. Do not be even the slightest bit ambivalent. The type of person who is obsessive with another will take an inch and make it into a mile.

  • Document, document, document everything. Keep all letters or notes sent. Keep a record or diary of these events.

  • Don't think the behavior will change, no matter how much begging, pleading, cajoling there is or how much sympathy you may feel. It is almost always manipulation to get you back. Don't fall for it. Specifically remember the bad times. Once you've been charmed back, you will be seeing the bad side again and it will overshadow the good.

  • They blame you - do not take responsibility for their actions. You don't have to put up with it.

    Cyber stalking

    As more and more people are gaining access to the Internet there is an increasing awareness of a new form of stalking called cyber stalking. Cyberstalking is the use of the Internet, and other forms of electronic communications to harass or threaten someone repeatedly. This can involve e-mail, harassment in live chat situations, and using the victims code name or e-mail address after leaving inappropriate messages on message boards or guest books, sending viruses, or electronic theft identity.

    By using e-mail the stalker can send spam (large volumes of unsolicited junk mail) and send pornographic materials to work or family accounts. In live chat situations the harassment may involve "flaming", or on-line verbal abuse, sexual harassment, and repeated attempts at "private chats". Electronic identity theft is use of the Internet to gain personal information. There are on-line services that will give your social security number, financial history, personal information, and a detailed map to your house.

    Cyber stalking can be as terrifying as IRL (in real life) stalking, but often harder to prove and more difficult to control. The anonymity of the Internet works for the stalker, but there are safety procedures to help anyone on-line and those being cyber stalked. Do not give out personal information on-line, do not use your real name or nickname on-line, and be very careful about meeting on-line acquaintances in person. If you are being cyber stalked change e-mail accounts, and again as with IRL if possible keep old account open to document on-going abuse and only give new information those who really need it. If you cannot change accounts look in to filter programs. Within a chat room use gender-neutral nicknames, do not use real e-mail addresses, be careful with profiles, use ignore options, and do not answer individual chat requests. Notify the chat administrator or room moderators of abuse. If you are being harassed through e-mail or through a chat room you can notify the Internet provider; most Internet providers have either a complaints account at postmaster@domainnam or abuse@domainname.

    For more help on-line and more safety measures there are several web sites devoted to cyber stalking; www.haltabuse.org and www.cyberangels.org offer suggestions and support to those being cyber stalked.

  • Myths and Facts about Domestic Violence

    Myth 1:  Domestic violence does not affect many people.

    A woman was beaten every 15 seconds according to 1983 statistics.   Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women between ages 15 and 44 in the United States--more than car accidents, other assaults and rapes.  In 1992, the Surgeon General concluded that battered women are more likely to suffer miscarriages and to give birth to babies with low birth weights.  In 1992, nearly two-thirds of the young men between the ages of 11 and 20 who are serving time for homicide have killed their mother's abuser.

    Myth 2:  Battering is only a momentary loss of temper.

    Battering is the establishment of control and fear in a relationship through violence and other forms of abuse.  The batterer uses acts of violence and a series of behaviors, including intimidation, threats, psychological abuse, isolation, etc. to coerce and to control the other person.  The violence may not happen often, but it remains as a hidden and constant terrorizing factor (Uniform Crime Reports, FBI, 1992).   It has been reported in the state of Maine that 20% of women victimized by their spouses or ex-spouses said that they had been victimized over and over again by the same person.

    Myth 3:  Domestic violence only occurs in poor, urban areas.

    Women of all cultures, races, occupations, income levels, and ages are battered by husbands, boyfriends, lovers and partners.  Approximately one third of the men who were counseled are professional men who are well respected in their jobs and communities. 

    Myth 4:  Domestic violence is just a push, slap or punch--it does not produce  serious injuries.

    Battered women are often severely injured.  According to an A.M.A. study in 1992, one in four pregnant women have a history of partner violence.

    Myth 5:  It is easy for battered women to leave their abuser.

    Women who leave their batterers are at a greater risk of being killed by the batterer than those who stay.  Nationally, half of all homeless women and children in 1991 were on the streets because of violence in the home. 

    From:  "Domestic Violence: The Facts" -- A Handbook to STOP violence, Battered Women Fighting Back, Boston, MA.

    Other Facts:

    Domestic violence cuts across lines of race, nationality, language, culture, economics, sexual orientation, physical ability, and religion to affect people from all walks of life. Domestic violence is serious wherever and whenever it happens. Racism, sexism, ableism, homophobia and other forms of oppression can impact how people experience violence in their lives and how they are able to get help. Substance abuse problems or mental illnesses, while not responsible for domestic violence, can change a family’s experience of violence and the kind of treatment that is needed. People have developed specific resources to make sure that all individuals in any circumstance can get the help and support they need to end domestic violence in their lives. 

    In 1994, nearly 2 of 3 female victims of violence were related to or knew their attacker.  Many women fail to report their attacks to police because they feared retaliation from the offender.  Annually, compared to males, females experienced over 10 times as many incidents of violence by an intimate. 

    It was reported in 1991 that each year, medical expenses from domestic violence total at least $3 to $5 billion.  Businesses forfeit another $100 million in lost wages, sick leave, absenteeism and non-productivity.  It is estimated that a quarter of all workplace problems such as absenteeism, lower productivity, turnover and excessive use of medical benefits are due to family violence. 

    In a 1990 national survey, half of the men who frequently assaulted their wives also frequently abused their children.  Child abuse is more likely to occur in families where domestic violence is present.  In 1995, a California study found that children who witnessed violence at home displayed emotional and behavioral disturbances as diverse as withdrawal, low self-esteem, nightmares, self-blame and aggression against peers, family members and property.

    We've learned not to let friends drive drunk.  We've learned to help stop crimes.  How can you approach a friend in trouble?


       If you think a person is being abused:


    • If an assault is occurring, call 911. 

    • Take the time to listen and believe what your friend says

    • Don't downplay the danger

    • Don't judge or criticize your friends choices

    • Give emotional support

    • Offer to help with children care or transportation

    • Express concern for your friend's safety

    • Let your friend know about agencies that can help

    • Always remember domestic violence hurts everyone

    However way you found this page, the East Orange Police Department is glad you are here, to educate and to be educated. You and your police department are a powerful agent for change to keep more men and women from being beaten senseless, and living in fear, and to keep more children safe and free from witnessing this horror. Educate, be educated, and make a difference. This is the very least we can do. And this much is a lot because it is the foundation of changing how we think about Domestic Violence. The "Domestic" part of the term "Domestic Violence" makes it seem almost harmless but ask any survivor, any victim, or any family member who has lost a loved one to this how harmless this is. You won't get that answer from them. There are few guarantees as a general rule. But this we will guarantee. From now on, instead of keying a term that makes this issue seem harmless by calling it "Domestic" Violence, let's just call it what it is: spousal and relationship beating.

    This page is our way of opening the door to what is happening in America and abroad and telling the story of survival. What is written here could quite possibly save a life if we do our part individually and collectively.

    In the time it took you to read just the text on this page, 38 women were battered. How many more people have to be before we light the way for those who may never know what freedom and happiness is? We must do our part now.
    East Orange Police National Domestic Violence HotLine - Please Get Help

    This page is dedicated to those who won the battle--the survivors--who light the way for others; to those who cannot yet make their voices heard--the victims; to those who can never again make their voices heard--the Angels in Heaven above.

     If you need assistance now, call:

     National Domestic Violence Hotline is 1-800-799-SAFE(7233).

     TDD is 1-800-787-3224
    Help End Domestic Violence

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