Regarding the attempted murder of Lucy Ponte and apparent suicide of Mario Ponte
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Tuesday, August 14, 2012
CONTACT: Reza Clifton, RICADV: (401) 467-9940, Cell: (401) 497-5246
Statement by Kristin Lyons, Executive Director of the Women's Center of Rhode Island & Deborah DeBare, Executive Director of the Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence
"Though not much has yet been released about the attempted murder of an East Providence woman and apparent suicide in Seekonk of the husband and alleged batterer, we at the Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence and the Women's Center of Rhode Island are concerned about the issue of domestic violence, a clear factor in this case."
"Any act of violence between intimate partners in RI is classified as domestic violence under state law and we know that this type of violence happens in all 39 cities and towns in Rhode Island – crossing every race, ethnicity, income bracket, age-range and education level. It is also important to keep in mind that behind every incident of domestic violence, even an initial incident, there is a history and escalation of abusive behavior, including emotional or psychological abuse, even if it's not been reported to police, friends or family."
"We also know that one of the most dangerous times for domestic violence victims is when they decide to leave the relationship. In this case, friends of the husband have told local press that the injured woman was planning to divorce the man. Sources close to the family have also reported that the husband was experiencing job troubles. According to the CDC and the National Network to End Domestic Violence, not having a job and factors associated with a bad economy can increase the risk that someone will hurt his/her partner."
"With RI being disproportionately affected by rough economic times, we want to remind those experiencing domestic violence and those trying to leave relationships that there is help available. There are six local domestic violence agencies in our state that provide a wide array of services, including 24 hour hotline support, safety plans for those leaving, emergency shelter, support groups and assistance with the legal system. If you or someone you know needs support, call the statewide Helpline at 800-494-8100."