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DA hosts strangulation awareness training as part of DV Awareness Month

Crime and public safety Metro ATL Trending

DA hosts strangulation awareness training as part of DV Awareness Month

Photo provided to Decaturish

Atlanta, GA – Last week, in recognition of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, District Attorney Sherry Boston hosted a specialized training on the topic of strangulation for first responders and criminal justice partners, a press release said.

“Domestic Violence Strangulation: Identifying, Investigating & Prosecuting,” featured leading experts in the field of non-fatal strangulation and suffocation assaults in intimate partner violence cases.

Professionals handling sexual assault, domestic violence, child abuse, elder abuse or human trafficking cases were invited to attend, and the training included more than 300 law enforcement officials, 911 dispatchers, paramedics, police officers, prosecutors, court staff, judges and advocates. The event took place at Saint Philip AME Church, 240 Candler Rd. SE, Atlanta, GA, and invitees were given the opportunity to attend on October 13 or October 14.

Strangulation has been identified as one of the most lethal forms of domestic violence and sexual assault: unconsciousness may occur within seconds and death within minutes. When domestic violence perpetrators strangle their victims, especially to the point of unconsciousness, it is not only a felony, but it may be an attempted homicide. According to the Training Institute on Strangulation Prevention, “A woman who has suffered a nonfatal strangulation incident with her intimate partner is 750% more likely to be killed by the same perpetrator…with a gun.”

“Strangulation is one of the most terrifying experiences a person can have, but it is often an ‘invisible’ injury,” said District Attorney Boston. “The internal injuries and neurological impacts of strangulation can be devastating, if not deadly. We have a duty to learn the nuances and consequences of this extreme measure of power and control, and I believe that equipping first responders and fellow members of the criminal justice system with this knowledge will save lives.”

The training, facilitated by the Training Institute on Strangulation Prevention, in partnership with the DeKalb County District Attorney’s Office, covered the following topics:

— Understanding the lethality of strangulation;

— The link to other crimes, police shootings and mass murders;

— Identifying the signs and symptoms of strangulation cases;

— Anatomy and medical aspects in surviving and non-surviving victims;

— Investigating and documenting domestic violence and sexual assault strangulation cases;

— Survivor accounts;

— Legal aspects of strangulation cases with surviving victims;

— Developing and using experts in court; and

— Advocating for traumatized victims.

The training was sponsored by DeKalb County District 5 Commissioner Mereda Davis Johnson.

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