Tuesday, May 31, 2011

That Badge..That Gun..No Place to Run..

Yesterday in Roanoke, Virgina, as Jennifer Agee, 30 pulled into a convenience store parking lot with a child sitting in the car seat, she was gunned down in cold blood by her former husband, Franklin County Sheriff, Johnathan Agee. Immediately after shooting her, he burned rubber in the parking lot and took off.

A few minutes later he fired at other officers, wounding one, before he was stopped by returning fire. Agee was airlifted and is in critical condition. If Agee survives he will be charged with murder The other officer is recovering from a shot to the leg. Jennifer Agee died a short time later at the hospital. It is difficult for any law enforcement community when these tragedies occur, but what could have been done to prevent the murder of Jennifer Agee? Did fellow officers see signs? Were comments made prior to the shooting or around the time the couple divorced that he was going to "take care" of the problem? Was it apparent he was angry over the ending of the marriage? Besides training in the community as it relates to stalking and intimate partner violence, what are fellow officers in the law enforcement community taught when it is one of their own? The answer is nothing. It is not part of training either at the police academy or in continuing education.

How about programs for wives and girlfriends former or otherwise? What measures are in place for their safety? The answer is nothing. They have no shield, no place to run, no training as it relates to possibly diffusing the situation. In this tragic case, Jennifer Agee was stalked prior to her being killed.

In a newspaper remark it said "It was not clear what made the 32-year-old deputy snap." In my opinion, he did not just snap! This was brewing over time. No one wakes up one morning out of the clear blue and decides to kill. It does not happen that way.

If the Franklin County Sheriff Ewell A. Hunt wants to investigate this tragedy, I suggest he begin by interviewing her friends, family and his. Talk with those they both knew and worked with on a daily basis. Obtain the cell phone, text and computer emails, records from each of them. What about where she lived? Did she call police because he was following her? Was a report written or dismissed because he was in law enforcement?

This is and should not be treated as an isolated incident. As I write this you have partners married or in a relationship with law enforcement whom are now living in greater fear for their lives. While you should always be there for your officers, consider going that extra mile as it pertains to spouses and girlfriends as they also require special attention during this time.

In memory of Jennifer Agee, it is the very least you can do, before someone else is killed.

If you are in a violent relationship the first time you are threatened, hit, stalked, questioned in a controlling way, a second chance to save your life, is no longer an option.

“If you are reading this and find yourself in a similar situation, know that there are measures you must take before announcing the end of your relationship. These safety precautions can be found in the book, "Time's Up: A Guide on How to Leave an Abusive and Stalking Relationship" by Susan Murphy Milano. Don't take things into your own hands without expert guidance.” (Mothers Are Vanishing)

I cannot stress enough, if you are in a relationship that has a history of violence, simply mustering up the courage to confront the person and say it is over, without the proper tools, can cost you, your life!

One of the major reasons women stay in abusive relationships is fear. They are afraid of what will happen to them and their children if they leave. Sadly, their fears are often justified; statistics show that a woman is at the greatest risk for injury when sheannounces her plans or leaves an abusive relationship.

The book "Time's Up A Guide on How To Survive and Abusive and Stalking Relationship" is the prescription, if you will, that every person must obtain before they announce they are leaving. Below is an example from Chapter 4, one of many unique tools provided in the book. It is available onAmazon.com, or you can purchase via e-book or on a cd. If you have questions, the email address is: timesupforjustice@gmail.com

Before you decide that you have had enough and are ending the relationship create for yourself the "Evidentiary Abuse Affidavit" and video (shown below).

If you do nothing else, please take one important step that if something does happen to you, if you do vanish like Stacy Peterson, Vensus Stewart, Rachel Anderson, Susan Powell, Lisa Stebic, or arefound murdered like Monica Beresford-Redmond, Franki Jacobson, Renee Pagel, Summer Inman,Kelly Rothwell and others where the person responsible has gotten away with murder that your voice and record of the abuse will be captured and recorded. Do it for you friends, family and loved ones. Do it for your children. Do it for you!
Susan Murphy Milano is with the Institute for Relational Harm Reduction and Public Pathology Education. She is an expert on intimate partner violence and homicide crimes. For more information visithttp://www.saferelationshipsmagazine.com/ She is also in partnership with Pamela Chapman and iAscend Programs. http://pamelachapmanl.biz

Susan is the author of "Time's Up A Guide on How to Leave and Survive Abusive and Stalking Relationships," available for purchase at the Institute, Amazon.com and wherever books are sold. Susan is the host of The Susan Murphy Milano Show, "Time's Up!" on Here Women Talk http://www.herewomentalk.com/ and is a regular contributor to the nationally syndicated The Roth Show with Dr Laurie Roth. Susan is a survivor- the daughter of a police officer family intimate partner homicide by her father who murdered her mother before committing suicide.

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