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Palm Coast Thursday, Apr. 11, 2019 3 months ago

Flagler sheriff: Community has 'turned the corner' on domestic violence

Rick Staly hosted his second Domestic Violence Summit on April 10.
by: Guest Writer

Sheriff Rick Staly and Chief Steve Brandt of the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office hosted a follow-up Domestic Violence Summit on Wednesday, April 10, inside the Kim C. Hammond Justice Center to hear an update on domestic violence in Flagler County and the reports from the five subcommittees. 

“Domestic violence affects every county and city in our country," Staly said, according to an FCSO press release. "The only way to tackle a problem this size is to work together as a community and attack it from every angle. I'm not ready to declare victory on this problem, but there has been a reduction in domestic violence in Flagler County so far in 2019. I think we may have turned the corner.”

Social Services Chairpersons Penny Niceley and Stephanie Morrow

The Social Services committee reported that the batterers intervention program that started last year already has many success stories. Chairpersons Stephanie Morrow and Penny Niceley run the 29-week program that often begins while the inmate is still in jail. They work with the sheriff’s STRIDE program to help find ways to help prevent recidivism for offenders and start them on the track to success.

The Faith-Based Services subcommittee reported that they have conducted training for local clergy on domestic violence over the past year and have plans to conduct more training in 2019.

Staly closed the summit by thanking all members of the subcommittees for their diligence and devotion to this cause. He also shared a personal story of conducting a traffic stop recently on a vehicle without a valid tag. It turned out that the woman driver was a victim of domestic violence and had escaped the abuse and was staying at a local shelter. The FCSO was able to assist her back to the shelter and the Family Life Center is aiding in getting her proper transportation.

“Two years ago," Staly said, "I don’t think we would have had the same success with being able to assist this woman. That is the power of the community working together. Having a dedicated domestic violence detective and analyst allows for constant follow up on these cases. Keep up the great work, because it is working.”

— Story courtesy of the Flagler County Sheriff's Office, by Public Affairs Manager Brittany Kershaw

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