Stearns County Domestic Violence Court
for Repeat Felony Offenders
Systemic Change CAN Be Accomplished
The violence can be reduced:
 Abuser behavior changes OR
 Victim and her children leave OR
 Abuser is incarcerated
This is a better use of limited criminal justice system resources:
 Overall crime – especially violent crime – is reduced
 Less offenses: more public safety, better use of court time
 Less chemical dependency/mental health challenges: less crime
Generational issues simply must be addressed:
Evidence of child trauma is clear and can be addressed.
The entire “system” must be engaged in protecting the kids!
Victims need assurance of confidentiality to plan for safety.
When systems work, victims can separate from abusers.
Good research is out there to be applied:
o Child and victim safety planning makes a difference
 Dr. Jeff Edelson – child trauma assessment tool
o Lethality assessments already in place
 Jacqueline Campbell – national model in use
o Effect on child brain development already known
 Dr. Bruce Perry
Abuser: “it’s what our family does”
Father, uncle and self are all violent
Research and statistics show its true…
Victim: “I know I’ll get beat up if I go back…
but if I don’t go back, I know he’ll kill me.”
Research and statistics show its true…
Janelle Kendall, Stearns County Attorney, St. Cloud, MN (320) 656-3880 [email protected]