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Prosecutors and Victim Witness Advocates in our office are committed to working with you to hold batterers accountable for their violent behavior.
- Develop a safety plan that includes an escape plan for you and your children should a violent incident occur. During an incident, try to move away from an area or room where access to weapons might increase your risk, such as the kitchen.
- Call the police or leave the house as soon as possible after an abusive incident. The police will respond and stay with you until you are safe or in a safe place. The police will also help you seek medical treatment, if needed. If you feel danger, dial the police number and hang up before it rings, so that the redial button will automatically call the police if you need them quickly.
- Be alert when leaving the courthouse. If you have any reason to believe your abuser may be waiting for you, please ask someone in the District Attorney’s Office or a Victim Witness Advocate to help. A police officer or a court officer may be able to escort you to your car.
- Guns will be turned over to the police as ordered by the Judge, along with a license to carry the guns and Firearms Identification Card. The police can also search for and take custody of a gun or weapon if you request it and give them permission to search your home.
- Consider changing the locks on your home. The Judge can order the abuser to turn over the keys to your home and/or your car. Keep an extra set of keys in a safe place.
- Inform your neighbors if a 209A order is in place. Encourage them to call the police if they see the abuser or suspect something is wrong.
- Make copies of important papers and keep them in a safe place. Make a list of the things you need to take with you (birth/medical records, marriage license, check/bank books, credit cards or medications).
- Keep emergency money and extra clothes for yourself and your children in a safe place or with someone you trust. Include a few toys and favorite things for the children.
- Keep the battered women’s service agency number handy for emergency shelter and for support groups. You do not have to leave the abuser or have a 209A order to attend the support groups. Information and support in making decisions are important.
- Get medical attention as you may be injured much more seriously than you realize.
- Go to a hospital emergency room or your private doctor as soon as possible for treatment. Ask for a copy of the treatment record.
- Have pictures taken of your injuries and bruises at the hospital, police department, shelter or District Attorney’s Office.