Last Tuesday, the Texas House of Representatives debated and ultimately passed House Bill 21, which would create a domestic violence registry to provide the names, birthdates and recent photographs of offenders. If enacted, individuals who are convicted three times or more of domestic violence would be required to register as a repeat offender. The domestic violence registry will be available for free online.
Last Thursday, President Obama signed into law the updated version of the Violence Against Women Act, a piece of legislation that had been subjected to many months of political bickering over whether protections in the law should be expanded to homosexual and Native American victims.
Actor Edward Furlong, star in the film "Terminator 2," was recently sentenced to six months in jail for allegedly violating his probation in a 2010 case. The 35-year-old Furlong was reportedly sentenced for disobeying the terms of a domestic violence restraining order.
A Dallas County jury has been hearing testimony this week in a domestic violence case described by prosecutors as one of the worst they've seen in years in which the victim survived. The defendant in the case is a 34-year-old man who allegedly assaulted his 41-year-old girlfriend back in 2011 while he was on bail awaiting trial for previously assaulting her.
In an effort to curb a sharp rise in deadly domestic violence cases in Dallas, Mayor Mike Rawlings called on city leaders to raise public awareness and encourage men to change the "culture of male violence." The mayor also announced a public awareness campaign set to launch in the spring.
A 34-year-old Bexar County woman who was killed by her 33-year-old husband on December 27 had reportedly sought a temporary restraining order. Before papers could be served, though, Cynthia was shot to death in the couple's home.
Earlier this month, the Senate Judiciary was expected to approve legislation that would effectively ban so-called cyberstalking apps which operate secretly on a cellphone and transmit the user's location information without that person's knowledge. The bill was reportedly sponsored by Senator Al Franken of Minnesota, who was inspired by a domestic violence case in St. Louis County, Minnesota.
Football fans were recently shocked to learn that the NFL Chiefs player Jovan Belcher is alleged to have murdered his 22-year-old girlfriend before going to the headquarters of his team and killing himself while the team's lead coach and the team manager watched, unable to do anything in time to prevent him from the shooting. This domestic violence incident had nothing to do with football per se. It is a part of a big domestic violence problem in the U.S.
Our readers may have heard that Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant was charged with domestic violence over the summer. According to Dallas County district attorney Craig Watkins, those charges will not be dismissed. The district attorney's office has reportedly accepted the Class A misdemeanor family violence charges against Bryant, and his case is now under review.
On Sunday, a Dallas police sergeant was arrested and charged with family violence assault, a misdemeanor. The sergeant is an 18-year veteran of the Dallas Police Department, and has been placed on administrative leave pending an investigation. Sources didn't indicate the background behind the allegations.