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2003 News from Mecklenburg County

October 15, 2003

DOMESTIC VIOLENCE MEMORIAL MARCH:
ADVOCACY COUNCIL INVITES CITIZENS TO MARCH SILENTLY

Charlotte, NC - On Tuesday, October 21, 2003, men and women from Mecklenburg will march in memory of a woman who lost her life last weekend due to domestic violence.  The march will take place from 5:15 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. on the square at Trade and Tryon Streets in Charlotte.  Participants are encouraged to wear black.

This will be the fourth march this year memorializing a domestic violence murder victim in Mecklenburg County.  Courtney Elizabeth Cleveland, 24, was shot in her Charlotte apartment Sunday morning, October 12, shortly before 3 a.m., according to police.  Her three children were at home at the time, but were unhurt.  Charlotte-Mecklenburg police say her intimate partner turned the gun on himself after committing the murder. 

This is the 44th domestic violence murder of the year in North Carolina, according to the North Carolina Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCCADV).  There were 73 murders in the state last year with six of those taking place in Mecklenburg County.  According to a special report published in 2000 by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, "Every day, at least three women are murdered by their husbands or boyfriends in this country." 

The memorial march is organized by the Domestic Violence Advocacy Council, which includes representatives from: Mecklenburg County Women's Commission, Department of Social Services, Sheriff's Office, Shelter for Battered Women, Women First, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department-Domestic Violence Unit, Community Link, Victim Assistance, United Way and others. 

The Domestic Violence Advocacy Council will continue to organize these marches every Tuesday following a domestic violence-related murder in Mecklenburg County.  They will take place at the same time and location. 

DATING VIOLENCE
Ø 28% of all people experience violence in a dating relationship.  That is more than one in four.

When CHILDREN are involved
Ø Children of abused mothers are six times more likely to attempt suicide and 50% more likely to abuse alcohol and drugs.

Free parking for the march is available at the Hal Marshall County Services Center at 700 North Tryon Street or the 7th Street Station parking garage.  A free trolley runs the length of Tryon Street every seven minutes.

For more information on the effects of domestic violence in our community, call the Mecklenburg County Women's Commission at (704) 336-3210 or the Shelter for Battered Women 24-hour hotline at (704) 332-2513.

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Media contact: Erin Rutsky (O) 704-353-1688 or 704-336-3210 or rutskel@co.mecklenburg.nc.us



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