The day the Chilliwack RCMP initiated a public awareness campaign about domestic violence, there were nearly two dozen ‘K’ files on the provincial daily court list.
K files refer to criminal charges related to domestic violence, and on Friday (Oct. 8), there were 19 men and three women facing such charges.
From criminal harassment to unlawful confinement to assault by choking, the names of the charges themselves evoke the terror all too many people, mostly women, face on a daily basis.
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and local RCMP say that as they continue to shine a light on domestic violence, it’s important to bring awareness to youth.
Ten years ago, on Sept. 28, 2011 Maple Batalia, was shot and killed by her ex-boyfriend in Surrey. She was just 19 years of age and her story is a startling example of how domestic violence can affect youth.
“Because teenagers are still maturing, an intimate relationship for them can be challenging and is more likely to include communication issues, jealousy, and insecurity,” according to Cpl. Carmen Kiener of the Chilliwack RCMP. “There is a myth that youth aren’t affected by intimate partner violence. This couldn’t be farther from the truth.”
The most common age range for victims of domestic violence is 18 to 24 years (38.6 per cent), the second most common is 11 to 17 years (22.4 per cent).
For all teenagers and parents of teenagers who are navigating these relationships, police say the following are some red flags to look for:
• excessive jealousy;
• unexpected bouts of anger;
• controlling tendencies;
• taunting or bullying;
• pressuring partner into unwanted sexual activity;
• threatening or causing physical violence;
• vandalizing property;
• preventing partner from being with friends and other people.
RCMP remind everyone who witnesses anything they believe to be domestic violence to contact the Chilliwack RCMP at 604-792-4611 or your local police agency.
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