In the front lobby of the Pinellas County Jail is a sillhouette of a young girl. The text on it states: "I think it's my fault." It is featured prominently.
The silhouette was among artwork featured at the Pinellas County Jail in support of Domestic Violence Awareness Month. A special event was held Oct. 1 to call attention to the problem and offer solutions.
Police calls about domestic violence are among the most common complaints that patrol officers answer.
Domestic violence has many victims. They often are the most vulnerable and those least able to protect themselves. Some grow up to repeat the cycle, as abusers.
Speakers from support groups for victims of domestic violence offered their thoughts and shared painful experiences. The one clear message was that the cycle needs to end. A dozen people have been killed in Pinellas County in 2012 in domestic violence fatalities.
One of the speakers was Lorraine Yaslowitz, whose husband, Officer Jeffrey Yaslowitz, was gunned down and died in the line of duty when confronting a felon wanted on a charge of domestic violence.
To learn more about Domestic Violence Awareness Month, check out the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence's website.
Where to Get Help
There is help and resources for people impacted by domestic violence.
CASA's mission is to provide advocacy to victims and help bring about positive change in communities. The agnecy's 24-hour help line is 727-895-4912.