Domestic violence: What can be done for people in abusive situations?

WASHINGTON — The death of Maryland teacher NeShante Davis and her 2-year-old daughter, Chloe, who were allegedly killed over a child support dispute, shines the spotlight once more on domestic violence in Prince George’s County.

It’s the second homicide in the county involving a child this year.

The horrific double murder leaves many wondering what can be done for people in the county in abusive situations. Sophie Ford, the executive director of the Family Crisis Center of Prince George’s County, says a safe house can be an option, but the stay is limited.

“Ninety-seven days. And that number is composed of an initial 7-day period where you are relieved from that immediate danger,” says Ford.

Case managers work with people to determine whether a safe house is a good fit, or whether they will move on to stay with family or friends.

Ford says the three months can be a time of restoration.

“Restoration, in the sense that it’s extremely traumatic … for a person to be assaulted by a loved one,” says Ford.

Case managers work to make sure the person is stabilized, emotionally and mentally, by offering parenting and survivor groups.

“Beyond all that, the re-education piece is really looking at what a healthy relationship should look like once you leave these doors,” she says.

Case managers also try to work with clients to address their needs, and teach them how to keep themselves safe.

May 24, 2024 | WTOP’s Stephanie Gaines-Bryant talks domestic violence with Sophie Ford, Family Crisis Center of Prince George's County
Stephanie Gaines-Bryant

Stephanie Gaines-Bryant is an Anchor and Reporter for WTOP. Over the past 20 years, Stephanie has worked in several markets, including Baltimore, Washington, Houston and Charleston, holding positions ranging from newscaster to morning show co-host.

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