Category Archives: Crime

16 questions used to ID domestic abuse victims likely to be killed

Research has found that men who choked their partners were 10 times more likely to eventually kill them.

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A CBS News article reported that the Oklahoma City Police Department is among the forces using the 16-question checklist, which is designed to help officers identify victims who are likely to be killed.

By answering the below questions, the more times a victim answers “Yes” to the questions, the more likely domestic violence may lead to a victim’s death. The checklist will be used across the state of Oklahoma. Authorities in Maryland say fatalities have dropped 30 percent since they started using it.

 

Below are the 16 questions contained in the “Domestic Violence Risk Assessment” checklist:

1. Has he/she ever used a weapon against you/threatened you with a weapon?

2. Has he/she ever threatened to kill you or your children?

3. Do you think he/she might try to kill you?

4. Does he/she have a gun or can he/she get one easily?

5. Has he/she ever tried to choke you?

6. Is he/she violent or constantly jealous or does he/she control most of your daily activities?

7. Does he/she follow or spy on you or leave threatening messages?

8. Have you left him/her or separated after living together or being married?

9. Is he/she unemployed?

10. Has he/she ever tried to kill himself/herself?

11. Do you have a child/children together?

12. Do you have a child that he/she knows is not his/hers?

13. Has he/she been physical toward the child(ren) in a way that concerns you?

14. Does he/she have an alcohol/substance abuse problem?

15. Has he/she interfered with a 911 call?

16. Is there anything else that worries you about your safety?

 

If you are in Mississippi and need help please do one or all of the following by contacting the Mississippi Coalition Against Domestic Violence;

If you are in danger, call 911.

If you need immediate assistance after hours: Call 1-800-799-SAFE(7233).

Local to the metro area may call 601-981-9196

If you wish to be connected with someone in your area regarding domestic violence, volunteering or making a donation, call 1-800-898-3234.

Matthew Thompson is a Family Law Attorney in Mississippi and encourages victims of domestic violence to have an emergency plan and seek immediate help.

Don’t take your Gun to Court.

The Mississippi Supreme Court has reversed a Lowndes County Chancery Court Judge’s Order which essentially banned firearms from all areas of the courthouse.

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The Judge- by Taurus, a revolver capable of firing a .45 long colt or .410 shotgun shell. It is legal for Judges to carry guns, even on the bench in Mississippi.

This is somewhat controversially in light of several recent MS law clarifications on where one could and could not carry a firearm. A resident of the local community challenged the Court Order, alleging it contradicted state statutory law which limited broader restrictions to the wisdom of the legislature.

The law currently provides that if you have a concealed carry license and enhanced carry license endorsement you may carry in most public places, including Courthouses, so long as it is not in the Courtroom while Court is in session.

The Family law judges thought that did not go far enough and entered an Order, declaring the entire Courthouse a Courtroom, effectively banning firearms from the entire building.

The challenge was successful in having the Judge’s Order reversed. The Mississippi Supreme Court declared the Order an unconstitutional infringement on the rights of citizens to keep and bear arms.

“One of the clearest delegations of legislative power in our Constitution is found in
Article 3, Section 12. It provides: “The right of every citizen to keep and bear arms in
defense of his home, person, or property, or in aid of the civil power when thereto legally summoned, shall not be called in question, but the Legislature may regulate or forbid carrying concealed weapons.” (Emphasis in original.) Without equivocation, the Legislature is the branch of government that the citizens of Mississippi chose to regulate or forbid concealed weapons.”

Justice Mike Randolph, Mississippi Supreme Court

The Lowndes County Chancellors have filed for a Rehearing and made several compelling arguments on why the Mississippi Supreme Court may have gotten this one wrong. Stay tuned for more.

Also, you may be wondering why the title says Don’t take your Gun to the Courthouse, even though the Supreme Court says you can, well, it’s just good advice.

Matthew Thompson is a Family Law attorney, gun enthusiast and practices in Lowndes Chancery Court and does not think family law litigants having guns at all times is a great idea.

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How to Pick a Candidate…

It’s election season. Candidates are coming out of the woodwork for senate, congress, and judicial seats. Here’s a primer on picking a candidate.

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  • Do they have Experience?
    • This does not mean that they must have served in the position being sought, but does their work experience, life experience, education and training lend itself to the seat?
  • Are they Competent?
    • Experience is good, but it needs to be good experience. We all know that person that received opportunities because of connections, or who their uncle knew. Merely having experience may not be enough if you are merely a figurehead or placeholder.
    • The candidate should know what the position requires and should possess the needed traits to fill the spot.
  • Do they meet the Requirements?
    • For may positions there is age, residency and education requirements. It is fair to inquire if the bare minimums are met.
  • Why are they Running?
    • Is it for prestige or ego? Is it because they can make a difference.
    • Ask the candidate, ” Why are you Running?”
  • Are they a Good Person?
    • You can have plenty of experience, meet the requirements, be competent and still not be the best candidate. There is an intangible, hard to measure judgment of candidates. This is about their honesty, integrity and is the person they portray really the person that they are?

These are just some of the criteria that should be considered when choosing a candidate. We all have an obligation to meet the candidates, engage the process, ask questions and care. These elections impact our lives whether we realize it or not.

Matthew Thompson is a family law attorney and is excited about the campaign season and if all else fails you can still “eeny, meeny, miney, moe” to pick your slate.

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