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Domestic violence incident spurs state lawmakers into action

Readers may recall a violent domestic abuse allegation that ended in tragedy. The son of Red Sox broadcaster Jerry Remy was accused of stabbing to death a woman in Waltham, Massachusetts. Some commentators may have faulted authorities for not taking more precautions, as the tragedy happened the very next day after the man had been released from custody -- on assault charges against the same woman.

Lawmakers in the Massachusetts House apparently shared that sentiment, for they recently passed a bill that would bring many reforms to the way authorities in Massachusetts respond to domestic violence complaints. After passing by a unanimous vote of 142-0, the bill headed to the Massachusetts Senate for a vote in that forum.

House Speaker Robert DeLeo describes the bill as being very comprehensive. For starters, an accused would be held for a minimum of six hours after an incident, in order to allow the alleged victim time to evacuate and make other safety preparations. In addition, a written assessment of an accused's perceived safety risk would also be required from bail commissioners before an accused could be released. The bill would also provide enhanced training for court officials, including prosecutors and judges, on issues arising from domestic violence allegations. 

An attorney that is experienced in family law and divorce issues, especially one with prosecution experience in the areas of domestic violence and child abuse, can show patience and empathy in dealing with families in crisis. That quality of representation can continue not just through the crisis of a domestic violence allegation, but throughout all aspects of a divorce proceeding.

Source: WWLP, "Massachusetts House passes domestic abuse bill," Bob Salsberg, April 8, 2014

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