Many domestic violence victims in NJ begin as stalking victims
Many victims of domestic violence are also stalking victims. Advocates for victims advise them to speak up early and often about being stalked.
According to Nicole Morella of the New Jersey Coalition to End Domestic Violence, stalking is a controlling behavior used to intimidate, monitor, track and isolate victims.
She says "76 percent of domestic homicide victims were stalked in the 12 months leading up to their murder."
"What we hear from survivors, unfortunately, is that there is many different tactics that their partners might use. Whether they are in the relationship still, or they have recently left the relationship, oftentimes victims will talk about the partner constantly calling or texting them, while they are at work, when they are with family members or friend or out in the community."
Morella says when someone is constantly showing up where the victim is, popping up in the community or at their school or workplace when they are not expecting to see this individual, they are guilty of stalking.
She says stalking victims should not go quietly about their life.
"We encourage them that when they do suspect that this is happening and they are in fear of this perpetrator, certainly contact the local domestic violence program in their area."
They can also call the statewide domestic violence hotline at 1-800-572-7233.
Joe Cutter is the afternoon news anchor on New Jersey 101.5
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