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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August 8th:
Donita Elliott
died on August 8th, 2017

Donita Elliott was shot and killed by her husband Patrick Elliott. Authorities say he recorded audio of the shooting on a cellphone. The recording includes the couple talking. the shot striking Donita Elliott and her pleas for help. “But he refuses and indicates he will help her after he watches her die,” according to the affidavit. Police were called to the couple’s Lafayette home on Aug. 7 during a domestic fight. Tippecanoe County Sheriff Barry Richard confirmed that officers stayed at the residence for an hour, at which point Donita Elliott left the house and officers believed the situation had stabilized. Donita Elliott returned to the home about five hours later. Patrick Elliott called authorities early Aug. 8 to report that he’d shot her in self-defense. Patrick Elliott said in a letter to his church Sunday that Donita Elliott suffered from bipolar disorder and that she tried to attack him with a knife. Court documents show Patrick Elliott told authorities he planted the knife in the room.

Posted by Jane on June 18th, 2018
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August 9th:
Monica Butler Johnson
died on August 9th, 2015

Monica Johnson, claimed in a June 24 request for the protective order that her husband had been following her in the days prior, including at a birthday party she had taken her other son, who is 8, where she spotted David Johnson hiding behind a fence. He had also been seen at Wal-Mart in Prairieville and had even been seen peeping into her house and hiding in the attic. Monica claimed her husband had become obsessive, even secretly recording her at times. “My sons and I are not comfortable in our home,” she wrote in the request for the protective order. David Johnson had been arrested Dec. 31 on a count of domestic abuse strangulation, a felony, after the couple got into a fight at their house over her cellphone.

Posted by Jane on June 18th, 2018
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August 11th:
Leah Cohen
died on August 11th, 2017

The family of a mother and daughter who were stabbed to death at their home have described the shock and devastation caused by the tragedy. The bodies of Leah Cohen, 66, and Hannah Cohen, 33, were discovered by police in Golders Green, north-west London, last Friday night. Joshua Cohen — Leah’s son and Hannah’s brother — faces two charges of murder and will go on trial at the Old Bailey in February. In a statement, family members said they were “shocked and devastated” and were “struggling to come to terms with the tragedy”. But they had been comforted by the messages of support from friends and members of the community, the statement said.

Posted by Jane on June 17th, 2018
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August 12th:
Viola Herms Drath
died on August 12th, 2011

Mrs Drath was born in 1920 in Germany, and moved to USA after the WWII. She had a strong influence on German-American relations for over thirty years, and was active in various ways: as a journalist, a playwright, an editor, a foreign policy adviser, author of university textbooks, and a member of diplomatic missions to various countries.

When Mrs Drath was 70yo, she married a much younger intern from Germany, who soon became physically abusive. They were together for 21 year, until her murdered her. Mrs Drath wrote a memoir titled "A Thoroughly Muddled Marriage: Report of an Inmate" which hasn't been published.

Posted by Manya on June 26th, 2016
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August 13th:
David Edwards
died on August 13th, 2015

Mr Edwards, 51yo lawyer from UK, had the misfortune of falling in love with an abusive woman. Mr Edwards told his friends that she hit "rather hard" and could "knock him out with one punch," but he covered up his injuries and didn't complain to the police. She stabbed him to death during a domestic dispute, less than two months after their wedding. Here's what Mr Edwards' work acquaintance wrote about him: "Over the years we have come to know David well. He was a very engaging person with a wry grin. He was always proud of his reputation and integrity as an officer of the court. His tragic death has affected every member of the Chorley bench, and I am sure the wider legal fraternity, very deeply. David was held in extremely high regard by every member of the Chorley bench."

The Mrs Edwards was sentenced to life in prison. Here's what the prosecutor said after the trial: "This domestic abuse was one of violence by a woman against a man. It had all the dreadful hallmarks of this type of offending. Sharon Edwards behaved in a domineering and possessive way with her husband. She seemed to resent any of his past or even present friends, family and colleagues. She behaved as though she expected him to devote his entire attention and time to her and made an overbearing nuisance of herself at his work. She had been violent to Mr Edwards early on in the relationship but it escalated as time went on. There is no evidence that he ever retaliated physically to her assaults. He submitted to his wife's demands to cover up her behaviour and continued to say that he loved her. Her final claims that he had walked into the knife which killed him have clearly been rejected by the jury. Domestic abuse can come in all sorts of guises and this case is another in the sad catalogue of violent repressive relationships that seem to rob the victim of their power or ability to stop the violence."

Posted by Manya on July 18th, 2016
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August 14th:
Dorothy Hoogstraten
died on August 14th, 1980

Dorothy Hoogstraten, from Vancouver, was a shy, naive 17-year-old girl working at a Dairy Queen when she met a local 26-year-old club promoter and pimp. He pursued her and eventually persuaded her to date him. After a time, he convinced her to do professional nude photographs, when he then sent to Playboy magazine. Her photos were interesting to the publishers, and she and her then boyfriend moved to Los Angeles, where she soon married her boyfriend against the advice of those around her. Dorothy, who then went by the stage name of Dorothy Stratten, became successful not only in modeling, but acting as well, leading to jealousy from her husband. She and her husband began to grow apart, so the two started living separately. Dorothy filed for a divorce after he tried to control more and more of her choices, professionally and personally. One morning, her husband said she needed to come to his house to sort out some divorce paperwork. When she arrived, he attacked and raped her and then killed 20 year old Dorothy with a rifle. She left behind many who loved her, including her mother and younger sister.

Posted by Tasha1701D on October 22nd, 2019
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August 17th:
Joyce Taylor
died on August 17th, 2015

An autopsy indicated that Joyce Taylor was suffocated but her death also led to the death of her unborn child. Her body was originally found in a bedroom inside her home. Investigators say it appears the body had been hidden in the room. The body was discovered when the Joyce's mother came to visit and detected a foul odor. Allen Taylor, her husband was formally charged with capital murder. This was the second indictment for Taylor who was previously charged with tampering with a human corpse.

Posted by Jane on June 16th, 2018
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August 20th:
Naziat Khan
died on August 20th, 2001

Mrs Naziat Khan from UK had three daugthers, a son, and a husband of 16 years whom she didn't love because it was an arranged marriage. He didn't contribute to the household financially, so she filed for divorce. The husband decided that his honour was slighted, sent their son away for a few days, and strangled Mrs Khan in front of their three daughters, threatening to do the same to them if they speak up about what they saw. Then he dropped them off with a friend and fled the country. When their son returned home from his trip, he found his mother's body.

Posted by Manya on March 5th, 2017
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August 21st:
Huranieh Altantawi
died on August 21st, 2017

Huranieh, a 35yo personal fitness trainer, was in the middle of a divorce with her husband, and lived in the home alone with her 16-year-old son and two daughters, ages 14 and 12. On August 21st she died from injuries suffered in a fall from a second-floor window. Initially, detectives thought that Huranieh fell accidentally. After reviewing evidence, authorities felt that the teen boy deliberately pushed his mother to her death. Huranieh’s divorce attorney, said her client was estranged from her husband and in the middle of a divorce at the time of her death. She believes the teen sympathized with his father and thought his mother was becoming too Americanized and leaving behind Muslim tradition. “I’m just shocked,” neighbor Toni Jones said. “I’m totally speechless. I can’t imagine. “Can you imagine what the rest of the family is going through? I cannot. It would be devastating.”

Posted by Jane on July 1st, 2018
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August 26th:
Jody Meyers
died on August 26th, 2015

The heartbroken family of alleged murder victim Jody Meyers have paid tribute to the young mother, after her body was found buried under a garden shed and her boyfriend charged with her death. The 20-year-old South Australian was last seen at 7.30pm on August 26 and a desperate and tireless search continued for four weeks until her remains were finally found. In the wake of the shocking discovery, Ms Meyers' sister Tania Parsons described her despair and anguish after Ms Meyers' body was found under a cement slab in the backyard belonging to the parents of her accused killer. 'My mum lost a daughter, and I lost a sister, my kids lost their aunty and (your child) lost (their) mummy. We will forever miss her,' Ms Parsons wrote in a Facebook post on Friday night, according to The Advertiser. Police have alleged the young woman's death was a consequence of domestic violence.

Posted by Jane on June 18th, 2018
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