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GBMC Launches Domestic Violence Treatment Program

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Pat Warren joined the Eyewitness News team in 1992. Pat came to WJZ...
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TOWSON, Md. (WJZ)—More help for the victims of domestic violence. A hospital based domestic violence center opens at the Greater Baltimore Medical Center.

Political reporter Pat Warren explains it’s an emergency room for the abused.

In most cases the lawmakers pass the bills; the victims champion the cause. This one is different.

“My cousin Cathy was killed by her estranged boyfriend,” said Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown.

In 2008, Catherine Theresa Brown was ready to start teaching second graders when her former boyfriend shot her.

“She’d had some problems with him before. She had a new deadbolt put on her front door, and she had a security system put in,” a friend said.

For Lt. Gov. Brown, domestic violence is personal.

“Our entire family and the community of friends were all victimized by that needless, senseless taking of the murder of my cousin Cathy,” he said.

In 2009, Gov. Martin O’Malley’s  administration passed new legislation.

“If we can save one person’s life that don’t have to go through what we went through it’ll be worth it,” one woman said.

GBMC now joins the cause with a potentially lifesaving domestic violence program.

“Hopefully the doctors and nurses will encounter folks who are the victims before a horrendous injury takes place, and they’ll be able to intercede in some way to try to get the victim out of that circumstance,” said Scott Shellenberger, Baltimore County state’s attorney.

Victims of domestic violence should feel secure enough to know that there is a community that is willing to support them.

According to the O’Malley/Brown administration, domestic violence deaths have dropped in Maryland 41 percent in Maryland since 2007.

There are seven hospitals with domestic violence programs now, including Sinai Hospital and Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore.

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