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An open letter to the public from a homicide detective

As part of Domestic and Family Violence Prevention month, a homicide detective has written an open letter to the public.

To the Queensland public,

As a detective with the Queensland Police Homicide Investigation Unit I’ve attended too many domestic violence related homicides. I’m writing this letter to appeal to each and every member of our community to consider how they can play a part to stop this.

Too many times I’ve heard one partner tell me how sorry they are and that they didn’t mean for their partner to die, it’s too late.

Too many times I’ve witnessed kids watch as one parent is taken away in handcuffs, while facing the reality of burying the other.

Too often I hear friends and family say they’ve observed signs of domestic violence, yet they didn’t report it.

Domestic and family violence frequently involves an ongoing pattern of abuse rather than an isolated incident of violence, so how can it be that no-one spoke up or tried to intervene?

If a stranger was being assaulted in the street, surely someone would help or call police. So why is reporting domestic and family violence any different?

People justify their inaction to us by saying they didn’t speak out due to the risk of it costing a friendship. The truth is that not speaking out could cost a life.

I’ve been to domestic murders across the state and keep seeing the same outcome – dead family members and grieving families.

SPEAK UP and don’t be idle while these PREVENTABLE deaths continue. Domestic and family violence is a cycle that can be broken.

Trust your instincts, make the call, you could save someone’s life.

Victims need help, offenders need help. YOU can help.

If you are the victim or someone you know needs help important contacts to remember are:

  • In an emergency call Triple Zero (000)
  • DVConnect Womensline – phone 1800 811 811 (24 hours, 7 days)
  • DVConnect Mensline – phone 1800 600 636 (9am to 12 midnight, 7 days)
  • Elder Abuse Hotline – phone 1300 651 192 (9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday)
  • For more information on ‘Not Now, Not Ever’ visit the Department of Communities website here.
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