A Mother’s Tragic Story

Oprah is very active in preventing domestic abuse because when she was younger, she was abused. When I was looking for topic on domestic abuse, I thought her website would be a great place to find articles about domestic abuse, and I found a particular article that was not only true, but also very sad and tragic. Vernetta Cockerham was trapped in a very abusive relationship with her husband for many years. For the safety of her and her three children, she got out of the relationship so her family would no longer have to live in fear. Once her husband was arrested, she was so relieved. She was finally happy and felt safe within her own home. She started her day off like every other day on November 19, 2002. She took her youngest to the daycare, the middle child to school, and her oldest to library to make some copies of legal documents for the army recruiter that she had an appointment with later that day. Vernetta drove to a friend’s house to call social services because an anonymous report had been made against her for neglect against her children and knew that it came from her husband. She came back home to find her door open and her husband’s keys in the lock. As she ran into the house, she was attacked. After a long, brutal battle with her husband, Vernetta blacked out with her husband’s hands grasping her throat. She woke up panicked for her oldest daughter who arrived home before her. Vernetta ran to the police department, where policed rushed to her house to find her oldest daughter dead. The police did not arrest her husband, which led to these events. The article states that in a 2000 study published in Criminal Justice and Behavior from records in Massachusetts and studies in other states only 60 to 80 percent of restraining orders are not enforced. The article also stated that in a 2000 U.S. Department of Justice study found that officers made arrests in only 47 percent of cases in which the victim reported being raped, 37 percent where the victim reported assault and 29 percent of cases where the victim reported being stalked.

I have heard that the hardest thing for a mother is to lose one of her children. For Venetta, her husband was the reason she had to experience this. No mother should have to go through a situation like Venetta's.

To read this entire article click on the link below:

“Why Didn’t they Stop Him?”


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