What Fresh Hell Is This?

June 16, 2009

Follow-up to "Domestic Violence In Pittsburgh" Donna Williams Post

If you haven't already, you can read the details of this case in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article.

In my original post on this subject, I wrote the following:
What's needed now is to find out if policies were violated/if new policies need to be put in place.
Here are the three main issues:
1. In the first reported incident of domestic violence why was there a 23-day delay between the time that Ms. Williams filed her complaint (Dec. 13, 2008) and the time that the police issued a warrant and filed a criminal complaint (January 5, 2009). What took so long?

2. In April when Ms. Williams reported another more serious incident where she said she was held against her will, threatened with death, was chocked and bitten (and actually had photographs of her cheek with visible tooth marks on it) why did the police merely tell her to seek a PFA? Why did they not issue an arrest warrant for her assailant when the police have a Mandatory Arrest policy already in place?

3. Police have two options when an alleged perpetrator is in the hospital: either rely on hospital security or assign police officers to 24-hour guard duty. Why did they choose to leave this in the hospital's hands? Was it a case of not wanting to spend the money on officers' overtime? There is currently no Police Department policy specifically for cases of domestic violence (when it could certainly be argued that the hospitalized perpetrator presents a danger to the community).
Hopefully, these questions will be addressed at the next Citizen Police Review Board meeting.

Again, you can attend this meeting and are urged to do so:

Citizen Police Review Board Meeting
June 23, 2009, 6:00 PM
UPDATE: press conference at 5:30 PM
Freedom Unlimited Building
2201 Wylie Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15219

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