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Committed To Transparency

To Kasandra and All Those Who Have Lost Their Lives

Tuesday, December 4, 2012 - 15:11

 I think by now most people have heard about the tragic events of this past weekend in Kansas City.

Jovan Belcher, a Kansas City Chiefs football player, murdered his girlfriend Kasandra Perkins before he committed suicide in front of his coach and the General Manager of the Chiefs.

The couple has a 3-month old daughter, Zoey, who is now alone, to be raised without either of her parents.

I have been asked what my response is to this tragedy. My response is the same that it is every time a woman loses her life due to domestic violence: it is horrific; it is a tragedy; it is senseless and needs to stop.

The difference between Kasandra and the other 13 victims who have lost their lives this year in Kansas City is that her boyfriend was a Kansas City Chiefs player.

The other victims this year have not gotten the attention of the media as Kasandra has, and that is also tragic. The very concerned reporters I spoke to acknowledged that there has not been enough attention paid to domestic violence homicides. They were shocked at the statistics, not realizing how prevalent DV homicides really are in our society.

I hope that something positive can come from this senseless tragedy. I hope that people will have a better understanding of the severity of domestic violence; understand that it is happening everywhere and every day.

DV is a crime that must be stopped. We all need to make an effort to end this hideous cycle. Domestic violence advocates have more work to do in educating our community about the problem, what resources are available, and what can be done.

We all need to work together to ensure the safety of our neighbors, our friends, and our family members.

I have a commitment to those who have died, those who survived the attacks on them, and to their surviving children:

“I will work to ensure that your death and your attack were not in vain. I will continue to honor you and your sacrifice by working to ensure that others don’t go through what you went through; that other children will not be left orphaned due to domestic violence.

“That is the least I can do for you. You gave your life. I will use mine to continue the fight in your honor and hope that others know what a sacrifice you made. That is a very small thing that I can do for you. I am so sad that you are not here, but I will continue to fight for you and for your children, and all of those who are touched by domestic violence.“

I have been doing this work for over 20 years and I have never found it as difficult as I do today. It is with a heavy and very sad heart that I take on this day and the challenges it presents. I pray that I do this work with integrity, with commitment, and with those who lost the battle foremost in my mind at all times.