Memorial Wall : victims of domestic abuse

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This Memorial Wall is our tributes to those who have died as a result of child abuse, domestic violence, rape, religious abuse, or other types of abuse. Some of these people we knew personally, others we only heard of. Abuse is not a theoretical concept, it happens to real people, and costs lives. It's important to honor those we lost to abuse by telling their stories, so that the secret that killed them does not remain secret, and so that other lives might be saved, as a result of increased awareness.
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May 22nd:
Teneya Little
died on May 22nd, 2016

40yo Mrs Little, from Wisconsin, USA, was a nurse at the Milwaukee Area Technical College and mother of two teenagers. Her boyfriend was on parole for drug related charges, and had an arrest warrant for battery. "She was just looking scared," her sister said, "like she was scared, like, 'I'm just tired,' and when I seen her I was like, 'He's going to kill you,' and she just looked at me. (...) I think she always attracted people that needed help. That's what it was. She felt like he was good - that he just needed someone there for him or to love him." When Mrs Little pressed charges against him for domestic violence, he tried to convince her to drop the charges. They had an argument, and she died of a gunshot wound to the head. Her children were at home at the time and unharmed. The man told them, "I just blew your mama's brains out. I forgot it was loaded. I shouldn't have put the bullets in."


Posted by Manya on March 21st, 2017
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May 27th:
Burulai Turdaaly Kyzy
died on May 27th, 2018

20yo Burulai from Kyrgyzstan was about to graduate from medical school, and to marry her fiance. However, a local cab driver was infatuated with her. He subjected her to a practice called ala kachu, which is a bride kidnapping followed by a forced marriage, but Burulai's father was able to rescue her. The cab driver was continuing to pressure for marriage and making death threats, so Burulai moved to another district, to stay with her aunt, for safety. However, on May 27th she visited her parents to help her mother during the holy month of Ramadan, and went to the store to buy yogurt for her father. As soon as Burulai left the house, the cab driver abducted her. Her father saw it happen, but couldn't intervene in time. He contacted the police, both Burulai and her abductor were detained, and her father was told to come pick her up from the police station. However, Burulai was held in the same room with her abductor, and he stabbed her to death while the police were "distracted".


Posted by Manya on May 4th, 2019
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Farzana Parveen
died on May 27th, 2014

30yo Farzana from Pakistan was bludgeoned to death by her family for marrying her husband. They loved each other, she was pregnant by him, and her family initially approved of the marriage, but withdrew their consent after her husband refused to pay more than the agreed-upon bride price. Farzana's father accused him of abducting her, and she testified to the police that she had married her husband of her own free will. Her family then stoned her to death in front of a police station. Her father said, "I killed my daughter as she had insulted all of our family by marrying a man without our consent, and I have no regret over it."


Posted by Manya on March 21st, 2017
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May 28th:
Brittany-Jane Royal
died on May 28th, 2013

25yo Brittany-Jane from California, USA, lived with her boyfriend in a tent on a lava field in Hawaii; they were hoping to start an organic farm. Brittany-Jane was 10 weeks pregnant when her boyfriend strangled her during a domestic dispute. "Brittany's life was about peace (and) love," her mother wrote. "We can all learn from her. She was searching for the perfect place to call home and to raise a child. She is now in that ultimate paradise."


Posted by Manya on May 11th, 2017
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May 30th:
Lisa Isham
died on May 30th, 2015

52yo Lisa Isham from Minnesota, USA, was stabbed to death by her on-and-off boyfriend. She was a "bubbly" person who generally kept to herself (according to her friends), and he had a history of domestic violence, including several felony assaults. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 30 years in prison.


Posted by Manya on May 11th, 2017
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May 31st:
Pleasant Ervin Shorty Robinson
died on May 31st, 2010

57yo Mr Robinson, a welder from Texas, USA, was a father of three and a member of The Moose Lodge, a fraternal and service organization popular in North America. He was killed by his wife, who buried him in their front yard and told everyone he left her with another woman. His body wasn't discovered for three years, but eventually she pleaded guilty to murder.


Posted by Manya on March 21st, 2017
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June 1st:
Maria Sadaqat
died on June 1st, 2016

19yo Maria from Pakistan worked as an elementary school teacher, and didn't want to marry the son of the school's owner. "They sent in the proposal six months ago but the guy had already been married and had a daughter," explained Maria's aunt. "They wanted her to run the school after marrying the son of the owner of the school. Her father refused the proposal and they took the revenge by doing this." Maria was beaten, covered in petrol, and set on fire; she died of her injuries the next day.


Posted by Manya on March 21st, 2017
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Funmilayo Ajibola
died on June 1st, 2012

30yo Funmilayo Ajibola died in Badagry, Lagos State after being allegedly beaten by her husband, she was pregnant at the time. Her husband had a known history of spousal abuse.


Posted by Jane on July 21st, 2018
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June 4th:
Shaun Corey
died on June 4th, 2011

Shaun, 42, lived in Rochdale before leaving to make a new future for himself in London. He met his killer Karen Otmani through an internet dating site. Their relationship, was tempestuous. Despite repeated pleas from his relatives to return home, Shaun stayed because he was worried about what she might do and not wanting to leave his child. On June 4 last year Karen drugged and suffocated him. Shaun's mum Joyce Townsend felt Otmani's minimum 17-year sentence should have been much longer. "I feel angry," said Joyce. "All he wanted was to be loved. He just wanted a family but he got in a relationship with the wrong person. He was a lovely lad. "If your child dies because he was ill maybe it is easier to come to terms with, but this was premeditated murder. His sister Dawn said the warning signs were there, but Shaun always saw the good in people.


Posted by Jane on June 16th, 2018
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Suvarna Naik
died on June 4th, 2011

26yo Suvarna from India was a victim of dowry death. She had a 6 months old daughter, but her husband and in-laws were harassing and abusing her, claiming that the dowry they received for her from her family wasn't sufficient. Suvarna hung herself in her bedroom. The police charged her husband and in-laws with abetment to suicide, harassment for dowry, and dowry death.


Posted by Manya on March 5th, 2017
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Travis Alexander
died on June 4th, 2008

Travis was a 30yo man from Arizona, USA, who worked as a salesman and motivational speaker for a legal services company. He was trying to break up with his girlfriend of two years, complained to his friends that she was stalking him and slashed his tires, and was about to leave to Mexico with another woman. The ex girlfriend drove nearly two thousand miles to his home, they had some private time that they took pictures of, then he took shower, which she took pictures of as well, and the next pictures on the camera, taken within minutes, are of his dead body in the bathtub full of blood, with 27 stab wounds, a slit throat, and a gunshot wound to the head.

It was a capital murder trial, i.e. the woman was risking a death sentence, so she told three separate versions of what happened. First, that she hasn't seen Travis in two months and doesn't know what happened to him. Then, that someone broke into his home, murdering him and attacking her. Her final version, which she first mentioned two years into the case, was that he was abusive to her and that she killed him in self-defense. She even wore a t-shirt that said "survivor" to trial, causing much controversy among Domestic Violence activists, some of whom view her as a victim, while others view her as a perpetrator. In the end she was convicted and sentenced to life without parole. Here's a quote from Travis' obituary:

Travis lived each day as if it were his last, with many accomplishments, dreams, travels, and successes. He was an amazing individual who sought out to save the world with his positive influence, his motivational speaking and his writing. He was well on his way to making all his dreams a reality. Travis has touched so many lives and will continue in our hearts forever and always. We can never express the unbearable pain from this tragedy.


Posted by Manya on July 18th, 2016
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June 7th:
Rania Alayed
died on June 7th, 2013

Rania was killed by her husband after trying to escape an abusive marriage. The couple was originally from Syria, but moved to Stockton-on-Tees, UK in 2004, and to Manchester five years later. Rania was 21, a mother of three, and her husband abused her physically, sexually, and financially. Once in Manchester, she started reaching out for help, and even hired a lawyer. She started college, made friends of both genders, and confided in them that she was living in a domestic violence situation. In May of 2013 Rania moved out with the kids, filed for divorce, and began dating another man.

Her husband seemed to agree to grant her divorce, but on June 7th he asked to meet her at a neutral territory, so that she could drop off the kids to visit with him for the weekend. Once there, he murdered her, while their kids were in another room, dressed in her clothing and left the building like that (to make it look like she left, on security cameras), and was telling everyone they have divorced and Rania is alive and in Turkey.


Posted by Manya on February 19th, 2016
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June 8th:
Zeenat Rafiq
died on June 8th, 2016

16yo Zeenat from Pakistan was in love with a boy she met in school. Her family didn't approve and rejected several marriage proposals, so the young couple eloped (i.e. ran away from home and got married without family consent). Zeenat's mom said it was OK, invited Zeenat for a visit to celebrate her marriage, and assured her that she would not be harmed. When Zeenat came to her mom's house, mom beat her, strangled her, and then burnt her alive, for "dishonoring" her family. "I don't have any regrets," she said.


Posted by Manya on June 14th, 2018
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June 12th:
Barbara Bodine
died on June 12th, 2016

Mrs Barbara Bodine fell and struck her head after arguing with her son at her house, in Cooper Township, on April 24, 2016. She died 49 days later, on June 12. Her nephew, told police he could heard Mrs Bodine and her son arguing in the kitchen, then heard a thud. He went into the kitchen and found Mrs Bordine on the kitchen floor. A Sheriff's Deputy said in a report that her son "didn't seem emotionally distraught and didn't ask about his elderly mother's condition. Instead, he was straight faced and had no remorse for his actions."


Posted by Jane on July 22nd, 2018
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