Orange County tackles domestic violence - FOX 35 News Orlando

Orange County tackles domestic violence

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ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35 ORLANDO) -

Orange County will reconvene its domestic violence commission after it has been mostly dormant since 2005.  Carol Wick, head of the violence shelter Harbor House, says the statistics are alarming.

"We're actually seeing an average 35 percent increase of people coming in and seeking services regardless of what we're seeing with 911 and the child abuse calls, so we're seeing a significant increase in domestic abuse here in Orange County."

Orange County is in part reacting to a series of disturbing domestic attacks, including one allegedly perpetrated by Altherial Sharpton Junior. His wife was found in a neighbor's driveway in a pool of blood. She was stabbed, and he is charged with attempted murder. Carol Wick says that's closer to the end of the story, and that we need to take a more holistic approach to domestic violence.

"For law enforcement sometimes it's a very frustrating situation. They don't know anything until they get that 911 call."

One of the things Wick believes will help is a new test program for domestic violence. If you were arrested for that type of crime you would get a GPS monitor right away.

"The victim will have a responder. The perpetrator will have an ankle monitor, and so if they violate, that victim gets an early warning system so they know in advance the perpetrator is on their way."

Police would respond to the victim in the case of a transponder going off to make sure they are protected. The object would not be to track all movements of someone that is just accused of a crime, but to track any movement that violated a no contact order.

Currently, a person accused of domestic violence would have to violate a no contact order before they would be ordered to have a GPS. Chief Judge Belvin Perry hopes to begin the pilot program on February 7.

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