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  #51  
Old 08-31-2017, 07:29 PM
attie attie is offline
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Also, testifying is such a personal decision. I really don't like the term "victim", because I do not believe it is always used in the court process in the way we are used to thinking about what it means, and also because many crimes don't boil down to something as simple as defining people in broad terms. But for lack of a better term, I'm going to use it. So, as a DV victim I chose not to testify in a case that still resulted in an 8 year sentence without my testimony. So it is 100 % not true that these things just go away if a victim does not cooperate. Not testifying was the right thing for me. That is what I chose. Believe me I was not afraid of someone that was sitting in jail awaiting trial. My choice not to testify was mine, and it's about the only choice I got in this process that was mine, and I had to fight for that. However, if I had a friend on same situayin that chose to testify, I would support her choice. Sometimes you need to really take a look inward and decide what is best for you in your mind. Believe, nobody I knew was supportive of my choice, so I've gone through this pretty much working it out for myself and not having much outlet to jistvjave someone "hear", or just let me even talk through my path towards a decision. What I needed was someone to just listen, let me talk through my feelings without telling me what I should do .. I had been through many years of being told what to do.. and so that advice, or at least the delivery of it, was not helpful.
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  #52  
Old 08-31-2017, 10:09 PM
attie attie is offline
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Originally Posted by tryingtoheal View Post
A good six weeks ago I let the d.a. know there was additional information I thought might be pretty important for her to know that was not in the police report ...she seemed welcoming of that and said she also wanted to meet me in person etc and set a time for us to meet, then she had to cancel and reschedule, t hen she cancelled again twice more and rescheduled, ...in the meantime because she had said that there needs to be a witness from her office there when I give her any added information for the case, I'm prevented (I guess??) from being able to give her some pertinent and significant information that has to do w the case
late last week when I left her a message (once again) requesting to meet w her so I could inform her of those things and she called back, sounded irritated and that I don't need to worry, that she feels like I'm worrying and that she does this for a living so I should just relax
I was kind of tongue tied really I wasn't sure how to respoind to that-- and I also felt like in all this time 5 or 6 weeks that even if shes busy she should have been able to make a short time slot for me to come in.
I am in the dark abaout whats going on w a lot of it and she seems to discourage victims from seeking a little information or to correspond w her on important things

does anyone have any suggestions on how I can respond if she once again tells me its "Just really hard to find some time" for me to come in,...she also said she "doesn't want me to get further traumatized by telling her about what happened that wasn't in the report"

I'm planning to call her in next couple days - really need advice on how I can frame it to her that this is important for her to know and that I understand shes busy but its important..makes me feel like this case isn't important -to her its another case but to me its very personal about my life
if she tells me something like "I told you that you really don't need to be worried, and its hard to find
time to have you come in" does anyone have advice how I can respond?

its intimidating bc last week she was indicating that she doesn't like for t he victim to participate a bit or ask questions. I shouldn't have to feel intimidated by approaching her with a request or question or some other important issue


I realize that every situation is different, and mine was very different. Given how difficult DV crimes can be to prosecute, I am truely shocked that a DA would not have immediately taken the opportunity to send her investigator to come talk to you. DAs know that victims change their minds constantly in these cases.
A willing victim is a gift. They were on me for the nine months my boyfriends case took to go to trial. They sent a visibly armed detective or investigator to my best friends house asking her if she knew where I was, and then looked in her windows when she said no. And no, it wasn't because I did anything illegal. I have no criminal record and I was able to avoid ever getting a subpenea. So they were not looking for me because I violated any law. They wanted to talk to me. So, I really am surprised the DA did not send an investigator out.. that is part of the process. For a lot of cases, the only real evidence they have is the victim. DAs are not DAs because they ignore prosecution witnesses. So, I have to think there is more to it then them ignoring you. I went through an over six year relationship very much like how you described yours. It resulted in a jury trial for which my boyfriend received 8 years without my testimony or my initial interview with detectives ever being allowed into evidence. But they still made huge efforts to talk to me from the day he was arrested until the day after the trial started.
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  #53  
Old 09-02-2017, 02:08 AM
Anna7 Anna7 is offline
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Attie, it sounds like you've been thru hell .. more than that, sounds like you've lived in hell, for 6 years. I read your posts and what I heard is you had an intense commitment to not participate at all in your boyfriend's case due to a deep distrust of the legal system. And that was your choice, and I'm not judging. I'm just confused as to why .. did you want him to perceive that you were not the cause of whatever the system meted out to him, since you didn't initiate the arrest and chose not to testify? And if that was the case, were you afraid that when he's released he would find and kill you if you had participated in convicting him?
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  #54  
Old 09-02-2017, 05:07 AM
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Anna7, There were a few different reasons why I felt how I did. None of which was a fear of him getting out and killing me. I'm not saying that couldn't happen, because I know that anything is possible. However, my testimony would have given him a twenty year sentence, so getting out and taking revenge on me was not something I was afraid of.

I chose to be in my relationship long after I knew that it wasn't going to change (of course there is always hope, but it hadn't changed, so I pretty much knew it wouldn't). I could have left, I didnt. Therefore, I do have a responsibility in what happened to me and to him. That is how I see it at least. I absolutely was lied to and manipulated by the process and was so disgusted by it, and zero trust. I could in no way wrap my mind around 20 years for that one event as being fair. No, it wasn't the only event by far, but it was the only event he was being charged with. They gave him no breaks, they charged him with every possible thing they thought they could. I did not understand half of them. The one time I did speak to the detective right after they arrested him, they told me what happened and when I said I didn't remember that, they told me I know your upset, but we saw it on video, so just thInk hard.. The detective somehow then quoted me at the preliminary trial as having said things that I certainly don't remember saying. What I do know is after I talked to that detective I was more confused about that day between what happened and what he told me happened. I was not going to go through that again. The detectives are trained in how to interview for the result they want. They are good at it, and they can lie. I still am very troubled by the fact they use the same tequniques on victims as they do on the accused. I was to them a witness, not a victim. He was looking at minimum of 8 years based on the video evidence they had, for me that was enough. In these types of cases, you also have to keep in mind that there is a lot of history that goes with it. We had lived together for almost six years, I loved him very much. That is obviously a factor. People get less time for murder, 20 years was not justified.

Another big factor was just me and who I am and what I could handle. I could not even picture myself going into a courtroom and watching that video get played over and over for me and getting drilled on explaining it. I believe an experience like that would have caused deeper lasting damage. There isn't anyone that will ever convince me that it would have helped me heal. On top of that, I felt what happened to me was personal. Anyway, many factors that went into it, and I have not really even explained them in any depth compared to how each of them has impacted me.
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  #55  
Old 09-02-2017, 07:00 AM
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Attie, it may have felt personal to you, but it was also personal to whoever he abused before you and whoever he will abuse after he gets out. A murder is personal to the victim and their family, but we also see it as a crime against society, as we should. Domestic violence is the same.

It becomes not-personal when it goes to the court system because attempting to enforce non-violence codes and laws is a state/federal matter, not personal. You as a victim are not permitted, after the event(s) to go out and buy a crossbow and shoot him. That's vigilante (personal) justice, and you would be punished for it.
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  #56  
Old 09-02-2017, 09:05 AM
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"Attie, it may have felt personal to you, but it was also personal to whoever he abused before you and whoever he will abuse after he gets out."

It is the after he gets out part that worries me. The sooner he is released the sooner he can resume the violence.
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Old 09-02-2017, 10:25 AM
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I can understand what Attie is saying and how she feels.
Not sure this was the best way to go about things but at the end of the day....
She knows she did nothing to deserve either the violence that was done to her by her sig other NOR the treatment she got from LE.
Im sorry this whole thing happened to you.
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  #58  
Old 09-02-2017, 04:31 PM
attie attie is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nimuay View Post
Attie, it may have felt personal to you, but it was also personal to whoever he abused before you and whoever he will abuse after he gets out. A murder is personal to the victim and their family, but we also see it as a crime against society, as we should. Domestic violence is the same.

It becomes not-personal when it goes to the court system because attempting to enforce non-violence codes and laws is a state/federal matter, not personal. You as a victim are not permitted, after the event(s) to go out and buy a crossbow and shoot him. That's vigilante (personal) justice, and you would be punished for it.

A few things:

I was asked why I felt how I did and I explained that. I made my own decision based on my thoughts and feelings, and facts. In the end, there was nobody there but he and I, and a video camera. Cameras do not always tell a complete story, bad angles, parts out of view, and things that are hard to see and left up to interpretion depending on who is viewing it. In any case, I was not asking for advice on my decision, and it was one that I did and had to make for myself. This happened to me, nobody else.

Which leads me to my second point. You said what about the person before me and after me. I had no knowledge of him having a history of abuse. He was married for 18 years, and no charges ever brought against him for DV. If he abused his wife, then she also made her choice to keep that quiet then. I'm not asking for anyone to agree with me, but just as I was free to stay in my relationship and make my decisions, I do believe that his next girlfriend is free to make her own decisions as well.

If prison is just going to turn out someone done with their sentence to go do the same thing again, then it's completely ineffective isn't it ? So how do you really measure the time period of punishment for someone if you assume that it will happen again when they get out? Every thing I've been reading here I hear people saying it's 100% it will continue when they are out. Nobody seems to believe that prison is a place that a DV offender will be able to reform themselves. Yet the thought is reform is possible for robbers, murderers, embezzlers, drug addicts. So, is a long prison sentence helpful on its own, other then the amount of time someone is off the street? These are the types of things I considered when making my decisions. I don't have answers obviously. But I do feel the process for DV crimes is very broken. There is no programming for them or counseling, etc. that really addresses it. The anger management workbook course to me is a joke.

Every case is different. The system is not designed to take into account the differences, nor could it ever be designed that way. It's designed to work for the majority of cases, but not every case. If I got randomly attacked on the street, yes I would testify. But in that situation I wouldn't have knowingly put myself in harms way. If you knew someone that everyday walked across the freeway and then one day got hit by a car.. and let's say the person who hit them had been drinking. What would you think ? Would you expect the person that hit them to be charged with murder because they were drinking and driving, or would you say the person killed should not have been taking dailey walks across the freeway in front of traffic, because pedistrians shouldn't be on the freeway, and so they knew the risks of darting in front of traffic? I knew my risks, I have to take responsibility for "playing in traffic". I shouldn't have been running across the freeway everyday (obviously I'm using a metaphor/analogy).
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  #59  
Old 09-02-2017, 04:45 PM
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Attie, the DV offender is almost always (of course there are exceptions) Narcissistic-Personality-Disordered or Anti-Social Personality Disordered. They don't learn much regardless of the circumstances.

But, interestingly, studies do show a 10% reduction in violence among those who have been imprisoned. Their tongues and their other manipulations (financial, theological, whatever) remain, but the violence drops. And it's the only deterrent that does show such a drop. Talk therapy and medications are fundamentally useless.
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  #60  
Old 09-02-2017, 09:14 PM
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Yes, I know. I never needed to look up statistics on it. The physical abuse pales in comparison to everything else with a sociopath. But the other things, although many of them are crimes in the end, don't come with bruises and broken bones. They do however, make you look completely insane sometimes when you talk about them. I learned that a long time ago. Like I said, I shouldn't have been playing in the freeway.
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