Domestic violence initiative helps victims in High Point

HIGH POINT, N.C. — On average, High Point police get 5,000 calls for domestic violence every year.

It’s a crime that can bring deadly consequences. Ten years ago, one third of the murders in High Point happened during domestic violence. Law enforcement knew that something had to change.

“If you were the victim of a burglary at home it would be the equivalent of us telling you to keep your house from getting broken into again, you need to leave everything and move,” Chief Ken Shultz said. “That’s going to keep your property safe in the future. That’s what we’re doing to the victims of domestic violence.”

The High Point Police Department turned its focus to the abuser.

“We are good at holding the offender accountable and we’ve put the pressure back on the offender. It’s not up to her to leave it’s up to you to stop,” Shultz said.

Part of this initiative is about following up on the case. Shultz told us, “the victim’s not driving the prosecution. We as law enforcement are. You are moving to the front of the line.”

Catherine Johnson, the director of the Guilford County Family Justice Center, says this program works because it brings all of the players to the table where the Family Justice Center has a seat.

“We’ve seen 16,000 people since our center opened in June 2015. We have 100 percent success, no homicide for folks who have reached out for help,” Johnson said.

If you need help, call Family Services’ 24 hour crisis hotline at (336) 273-7273.