All Articles Tagged "domestic violence"

Angie Stone Will Not Face Charges In Assault Against Daughter… And We’re Not Exactly Mad About It

April 5th, 2016 - By Veronica Wells
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If you grew up with a Black mother, you likely heard the threat that she would knock your teeth out if you ever disrespected her. And Angie Stone’s daughter, Diamond Stone, learned the hard way, that the threat was anything but idle.

We all remember the horrific images Diamond released last year of the teeth her mother had knocked, clean out of her mouth.  (Angie later told Steve Harvey that Diamond’s teeth were already rotting and brittle, so it didn’t take much.)

And while Angie Stone has been very clear about her specific involvement in that altercation, never denying what she did, a grand jury decided that she will not face criminal charges for the violence she inflicted upon her child.

According to our sister site, Bossip, a DeKalb County grand jury, in Georgia, declined to indict 54-year-old Stone for assaulting 30-year-old Diamond.

You may remember the argument turned physical last March as the two women were sharing Angie’s home, along with Diamond’s children. According to a police report, Angie admitted to officers that she struck Diamond in the face with a metal jewelry stand after yelling at her to get her children under control.

Angie was facing domestic aggravated assault charges but the jury decided the case need not progress any further.

Bossip reached out to Diamond to see what she felt about the case being dismissed. Turns out, she had mixed feelings about it.

“I didn’t want her to go to jail but I thought there would be some type of reprimand.”

She also wished the judge or jury had recommended counseling for she and her mother, in light of their strained past.

“I just want to be clear that just because she was not brought up on charges, doesn’t erase what she did. That’s the main thing. I’m ok, my kids are okay. Everybody is doing well. But [I don’t want people to think] because no charges were brought, that it was fictitious, or it wasn’t as bad as it actually was. I don’t want to be forgotten about.”

Diamond, who recently moved out of her mother’s home, said that their relationship is much better these days and she is now working on a singing career of her own.

We were discussing this story in the office, and honestly I can’t say I disagree with the grand jury’s decision.

In our initial story, Stone told police that her striking Diamond in the face with a metal object, was in retaliation for Diamond punching her in the face several times. 

None of us were there and we’ll likely never know what truly transpired that night. (Though, in their sit down with T.D. Jakes Diamond did admit that she cusses at both her mother and grandmother.) But I know that if I even looked like I was going to put my hands on my mother, one of the potential consequences is not only getting my teeth knocked out, but death. And I don’t say that jokingly.

As a girl and then adolescent, my mother popped me, (open handed slap on my lips) for simply rolling my eyes or saying something slick out my mouth, on more than one occasion. She doesn’t tolerate disrespect. Even now that I’m a grown woman, I don’t doubt that she still might run up.

But honestly, I would never even dream of hitting her. Not only would it not end in my favor, this is the woman who brought me into this world. If she never did another thing for me, she deserves, at the very least, not to be attacked by her own child.

Now, I know that not everyone is close to their mother. Every mother isn’t maternal or even kind and decent to their children. Still, unless it’s an issue of self defense, I can’t see why a physical altercation would ever be necessary. And if you know you and your mother can’t seem to get along with one another, why move into her house, as a grown woman? Perhaps that was Diamond’s only option, in which case, as a mother herself, she should have played it extra cool. Because even if Angie didn’t knock her teeth out, she would have been well within her rights to allow the children to stay and put Diamond out on the street. Nobody wants to be attacked in their own home, no matter who it is.

If the jury was really indicative of the population in DeKalb County, Georgia, there were bound to be some Black people represented, who might have been likely to share my sentiments. I’m well aware that, as someone who is vehemently against domestic violence, I could be incredibly hypocritical in my stance. But my conditioning won’t allow me to see how Diamond doesn’t at least bear some of– if not most of– the burden in this situation.

Really, while most of us will never support domestic violence, what should be the punishment for a mother who retaliates against an adult child, who attempted to fight her, in her own home?

James Fortune Pleads Guilty To Assaulting His Wife

March 10th, 2016 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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WENN

Grammy Award-winning gospel recording artist James Fortune pled guilty to assaulting his wife, Cheryl Fortune, in a Texas courtroom Tuesday, ABC 13 reports. Back in October of 2014, the 37-year-old was arrested after he struck Cheryl with a wooden vanity stool inside of their home.

James entered a guilty plea to third-degree felony assault as part of a plea deal with prosecutors. He was sentenced to five days behind bars, five years’ probation, and 175 hours of community service. Per the plea bargain, he will also be required to complete a “batterer’s intervention” program and of course, he must stay far away from his wife.

During his court appearance, a prosecutor shared Cheryl’s victim impact statement, which read:

“I hope in all of this you get help. Serious help. Although this probation might be like a slap on the wrist, I hope you look at it as a moment to better yourself and change something within you for your future.”

This is the second time James has found himself on the wrong side of the law for behaving violently against a relative. In 2002, he accepted a plea deal for six years’ probation after he placed his 4-year-old stepson in hot water as a form of punishment. The then toddler sustained burns over 40 percent of his body.

So far, James has not commented on his recent guilty plea.

“Lord Hopefully U Forgive Me!” Woman Admits To Killing Boyfriend On Facebook During Domestic Spat

January 13th, 2016 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Nakasia James

San Bernardino Police Department

Facebook is used for a lot of things. Meeting new people, catching up with old friends, promoting businesses and organizations, and for some people, being a troll. But in the case of 18-year-old Nakasia James, she used the social media platform to confess to her followers and anyone else who may be interested, that she allegedly killed her boyfriend, 21-year-old Dorian Powell.

According to the Los Angeles Times, police in San Bernadino, Calif. are searching for James after police were called Monday at 2:30 a.m. about a domestic disturbance, which ended with a woman stabbing her boyfriend. But by the time police arrived at Powell’s apartment, he was dead at the scene, and James was already gone. According to a statement from the San Bernadino police, they are unaware of her whereabouts after the fact and are searching for the 18-year-old.

“Nakasia is aware that she is being sought in connection with this homicide. At this time it does appear to be related to a domestic disturbance inside the apartment.”

And that’s what a woman with the same name and Facebook profile as James (Nakasia “Macc” James) said occurred when sharing her confession on Monday. A profile police say is definitely James’s account. She said that she stabbed Powell in self-defense.

Nakasia James

Facebook/HipHollywood

According to KTLA News, police said there are no other reported incidents of violence related to Powell’s residence. They are urging her to come forward.

 

Ray Rice Is Dreading Explaining Domestic Violence Incident To Daughter

December 20th, 2015 - By Ashley Monaé
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Source: AP

Source: AP

After being released from the Baltimore Ravens for punching his then-fiancée (now wife), Janay,  in the face unconscious, Ray Rice has had a lot of time to think about his actions that has been a prominent point of controversy for the NFL.

During a recent visit to The Dan Patrick Show on Thursday (Dec. 17), Rice talked all things family and football – his two passions. “I do want to play football again and I’m not ready to give up,” he said, but even after being reinstating there haven’t been any real offers on the table for him.

Aside from on the field talk, Rice spoke openly about being charged with a third-degree aggravated assault. In particular, Rice harped on the fact that he’s dreading have the inevitable talk about his actions to his three-year-old daughter, Rayven.

“I have a daughter, and I couldn’t imagine that happening to my daughter,” Rice said. ” And that’s my lifelong journey for her, to raise her the right way, to make her understand that Daddy made the worst decision of my life, and to protect her from that.”

“The moment is going to have to come when I have to speak to her. She still asks about football, and I still have to craft enough responses to help her understand why I’m not playing I’m not ready to have that talk with her yet, but when she’s old enough,” he added.  “She knows how to use the iPad and the tablet, and would hate for here to learn how to type in my name, and the first thing that comes up is the video without having me to explain it to her.”

Thoughts? Watch the video below.

“He Literally Put A Bullet In The Gun And Pointed It At My Face.” Christina Milian Tells The Story Of Her Abusive Relationship

December 18th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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 Christina Milian Tells The Story Of Her Abusive Relationship

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Earlier this week, we reported about Christina Milian and her mother Carmen, discussing a past abusive relationship. Even though many of us recognize the prevalence of domestic violence, it’s always shocking when someone we know or a public figure comes out saying they’ve endured this type of trauma.

In this week’s episode of “Christina Milian Turned Up,” the singer shared more details about what she went through as a teenager.

“So I was 17, going into 18, and I met a boy and he had this sarcasm about him that I just thought was super funny,” she explained to author Tanya Williams on the show. “But that sarcasm turned out to be something a little bit more dark, and I had no idea what I was getting myself into.”

Like she and her mother discussed, Milian told Williams that there were times when she wished she could get away but felt that she couldn’t. In the clip we posted, Milian’s mom, Carmen, said that her boyfriend threatened to injury her family if she left him.

Milian shared one particularly horrific incident.

“He literally put a bullet in the gun and pointed it at my face. Staring down the barrel of a gun is the scariest thing you could ever experience. It’s not funny, it’s not for the movies. There’s a chance of life or death in one click, that’s it.”

After her mother bought her a ticket to New York, she “woke up one day and realized that my family was just trying to help me. And gave myself the courage and the strength to not call him and invite him back into my life.”

“She Just Kept Choosing To Go Back” Christina Milan And Her Mother Recall Her Abusive Relationship

December 15th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Source: E!

Seems like Christina Milian is revealing something surprising about herself and her family every other week on her reality show “Christina Milian Turned Up.” First she told us that she loved Lil Wayne even more than she loved her husband; and now, on a more serious note, she talked about her plans to promote a new app called “Stop Attack.” 

The app is programmed to alert authorities and close family and friends when a victim is being attacked in the home. Not only that, it also records what’s going on in the house from the time it is activated. This last part is invaluable considering it can be particularly challenging to prove that any type of abuse transpired in a private, home setting.

Christina Milian signed on to be a partner for the app and was discussing it on the reality show.

As the conversation continues, Christina casually mentions that she could have used it when she was in an abusive relationship. And she and her mother remember that horrific time in their lives.

Christina: “And I thought about even when I was in that abusive relationship back in the day…”

Her mom Carmen: “I remember he instilled that fear in you that if you left him, he would hurt us. And because of that, you stayed in it. But like literally to the point where you know you almost lost your life.”

Carmen in confessional: I am so proud of her for doing “Stop Attack.” This is something she can connect with and I’m glad she’s going to help others because honestly, if she would have been able to tape him back in the day, we would have had evidence.

Carmen: You had bruises and you were covering them up all the time. It was the hardest thing to go through… was watching you. It’s been so long since I even thought about it. It was so hard to deal with you being like that and you just kept staying. A mother to sit there and think that any day now I was going to get that phone call that you were gone.

Carmen in confessional: It’s one of the hardest things as a parent is to watch your child go through an abuse and she was a grown adult that just kept choosing to go back.

You can watch their full conversation in the video below.

Bow Wow’s Baby Momma Denies Abuse Allegations

December 10th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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Earlier today, we reported that Erica Mena accused her ex fiancé Bow Wow of beating women and she hoped that type of karma didn’t get passed down to his daughter–his seed as she put it.

TheShadeRoom caught her leaving a more damning comment than the one we initially reported, saying:

“Now he can go back to beating her ass again. I’m good on dealing with his Little man complex.”

Mena was referencing the mother of Bow Wow’s child, Joie Chavis. She also mentioned that she had a photo that would change his life. Hmm…

Well, the abuse claim is a strong one.

So strong in fact, that Chavis had to step forward and refute the claim.

She stepped into The Shade Room to leave a comment.

“Beat? When? Where? I NEVER say anything but this sh*t is just unacceptable, and ridiculous to say the least. Shad has never laid a finger on me, so dead it!”

Source: Instagram/TheShadeRoom

Source: Instagram/TheShadeRoom

She also said that she and Bow Wow are not getting back together. They are simply hanging out as friends.

According to TheShadeRoom

“Y’all gotta chill with these long a** paragraphs. It’s not that deep bruh, and we are not together. We are just friends, and I am single. I know it’s probably weird to some who have f*cked up relationships and can’t co-parent but that’s not the case here.”

Those might be her intentions but we’ll see what Shad has up his sleeve.

Survived And Punished: Is Naomi Freeman The Next Marissa Alexander?

December 8th, 2015 - By Veronica Wells
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This past summer, in the early morning hours of July 5, 23-year-old Naomi Freeman was pulled from her car by her hair before being punched 25 times by her boyfriend John Perry.

According to the Chicago Tribune, another person had to separate Perry from Freeman. When she got up, she got back into her 1999 Dodge Caravan minivan. She pulled into a parking spot and then made a U-turn.

She drove toward her boyfriend, who was still on the sidewalk. He moved out of the way and Freeman hit a wrought-iron fence.

She reversed the van back onto the street. Perry jumped in front of the van, daring him to try and run him over again.

Freeman drove toward Perry, striking him before continuing to drive on the sidewalk. She eventually drove through a fence and into a yard.

Freeman left the van and fled from the scene on foot. Perry was still stuck under the vehicle.

People tried, unsuccessfully, to remove him from underneath the vehicle. Later, he died at Mount Sinai Hospital from mechanical asphyxiation from being struck and pinned under the van.

And the whole incident was caught on video.

According to Freeman’s attorney, Steve Pick, this was not the first time Perry had hit his girlfriend. He argued that based on Perry’s history of abuse, she didn’t have a choice when she ran over her boyfriend.

He said, “This person didn’t go to that address with the intent to hurt anybody. She was in fear for her life and her safety.”

Prosecutors argue that Freeman simply could have driven away.

Pick also asked that her $500,000 bail be lowered. It was reduced to $350,000 but Freeman didn’t have anyone who could pay the $35,000.

In an attempt to get Freeman released in time to spend Christmas with her one and two-year-old children, ChicagoBond.org has started a fundraiser to raise the $35,000 bond.

They included this letter from Freeman herself.

Someday I will need to explain to my kids why they don’t have their father. I never meant to hurt him that day, I only acted in fear for my life. I have to forgive myself, but not for surviving, and I don’t think I should be punished for defending my life. I have to get home to my kids as soon as I can and be the best mother I can be. I need a second chance at life for them and for myself. 

   — Naomi Freeman, 12/6/2015, Cook County Jail

The ChicagoBond said that not only was Freeman pregnant at the time, she was also suffering from chronic autoimmune disease that affects her joints.

Freeman, who has been in jail for the past 6 months, is also living with Lupus and the stress of pre-trial detention.

$35,000 would mean  she would be reunited with her family and have proper maternal health care.

The ChicagoBond org argues:

Naomi chose to survive an attack by an abusive partner. We know from Naomi and other eyewitnesses that Naomi was pulled from a vehicle by her hair and slammed to the ground. Once on the ground, Naomi was beaten and punched in the face no fewer than 20 times. During this assault, Naomi was in the early stages of pregnancy and suffering a chronic autoimmune disease that affects her joints. Sadly, this was not the first time Naomi had been assaulted by this man. Had Naomi not acted in self-defense, it is likely that she would be dead. Instead, like many other women and girls incarcerated right now, who are disproportionately Black, she survived and was punished for it.”

They are comparing Freeman to women like Marissa Alexander, Cierra Finkley, Eisha Low, and Paris Knox saying that Freeman killed Perry as a way to escape her abuser and survive.

Aside from the fact that both women were involved in abusive relationships and decided to take a stand, there seem to be few similarities. Alexander only fired a warning show and no one was injured during the process. Freeman struck Perry with her car after immediate danger had subsided.

Still, with that being sad, no one knows what the nature of her relationship with Perry was. I highly doubt this was the first time Perry hit Freeman. We can’t be sure but the fact that he felt so comfortable brutalizing her in public leads me to believe it wasn’t the first time. And if this is what he did in public, it’s not hard to believe that her life was threatened.

There’s also the fact that she’s spent a majority of her pregnancy incarcerated when it is likely that she’s not a danger to her children.

Furthermore, it’s time that the justice system stops criminalizing women, particularly Black women who defend themselves against their abusers.

If you’re interested in donating to help her make bail, you can donate here.

 

Daily Show Staff Upset Over Chris Brown Appearance Due To Abusive Past, But Should They Be 6 Years Later?

December 1st, 2015 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Chris Brown

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In case you haven’t heard, Chris Brown is set to be a guest on The Daily Show tonight–whether certain staff members like it or not.

According to The Daily Beast, his booking was something staff was split over due to Brown’s violent past. Several Daily Show staff members actually reached out to The Daily Beast to say that they were concerned about giving Brown a platform as an abuser. But they were told by the host, Trevor Noah, whose own mother was a victim of domestic abuse and was even shot in the face by her ex-husband, that a part of the interview would be used to bring light to domestic violence issues. And that’s the part of the article where I rolled my eyes.

I don’t want to hear Chris Brown apologize for his 2009 assault on Rihanna again. My ears can’t take it.

Not only because we’ve heard it time and time again; not only because it still won’t be enough to please people; not only because it will be weird to have such a serious discussion on a news satire comedy show; but because he’s the only famous person out here still apologizing for his past.

(And before you R. Kelly fans try to come at my head asking, “What makes Chris Brown different from R. Kelly?” know that Brown actually has taken responsibility for his actions. He dealt with the punishment for his decisions, both in the courtroom and in the public eye. We saw the evidence, and he admitted to his abuse. We saw the evidence for R. Kelly–the sex tape and the marriage to Aaliyah when she was 15, and he was 28 alone–and he still has nothing to say.)

I’m honestly a little disappointed to know that not only will his episode focus on those past decisions he’s atoned for, but that many of the staff reportedly were opposed to allowing him to sit across from Noah for what, 10 minutes?

Don’t get me wrong. I do know that these are some of the consequences that come with doing terrible things in the public eye. Particularly in the digital age when images of a battered Rihanna were passed around, as well as the stomach-turning police report. I do know that for years, Brown continued to behave poorly, getting in scuffles and Twitter beef with every Tom, Dick and Frank Ocean. And I do know that if you’ve ever been a victim of domestic abuse, or had loved ones who have been, seeing Brown get to continue with his success knowing the pain he inflicted is probably disgusting.

But I do wonder what it is that will make people happy when it comes to Brown.

It can’t be an apology. He’s apologized more than once. In articles, in interviews and more. And each time his apologies have been picked apart and dubbed as insincere.

It can’t be for him to struggle in his career, because for a time there, he did. There were radio stations that refused to play his music at one point, and when he released his album Graffiti in 2009, stores like Walmart weren’t even stocking it.

And it can’t be for him to be genuinely remorseful for his actions, because who is to say that he hasn’t been? And how remorseful is just the right amount of remorse? Do you need to pull a Robin Thicke and make an apologetic album that no one will buy? Do you need to get on stage and make a public decree? Do you need to be seen in public in tears for weeks on end? Well, that doesn’t work either, because when Brown did break down in an ugly cry at the BET Awards while performing “Man in the Mirror” a year after the assault, people claimed he was just putting on a show.

So I have questions. I guess I’m just trying to figure out the endgame here. Is it that we want to see this young man fall under the weight of his past mistakes to the point where he can no longer sing or dance in public? Do we want him to become a hermit? Do we want him not to grow as a person and father and just be a constant pariah? Are we going to keep forcing Rihanna to talk about that man and that situation until she meets and marries someone else? I’m genuinely interested in figuring out what it is people want to see happen to Brown, a man diagnosed with Bipolar II, over a mistake made when he was 19.

Are we all expected to pay for the mistakes we made for the rest of our lives? And not to get too preachy on you, but as long as Brown has repented to the people who matter in this situation, Rihanna, and God, do the rest of us really matter? Do our gripes with him really matter? Does our decision to look at him as the abuser who hurt us, or our friends or our loved ones really matter?

It’s not something he can run from. And here’s to hoping that one day he will be mature enough to say calmly, “Yeah, it’s something I truly regret. However, it’s something I learned and grew from, and as the father of a daughter, I hope to work to help prevent such abuse from happening to other women.” But to say all that on The Daily Show? On Comedy Central? Please. That’s not the place for it. Especially not when the host of the show whose staff is riled up about your appearance deemed your domestic episode comical enough to joke about years ago on Twitter (“I woke up and my face was puffy and swollen- I looked like I was in the car with chris brown.”). Not when that same show allowed Charlie Sheen to be a guest in 2003, despite him already having about three domestic violence incidents under his belt at that time, including shooting former fiancée Kelly Preston. And especially not on a comedy show with a group of people who don’t stand up for abused women, let alone abused Black women, any other time.

Glory Johnson Must Complete 6-Month Domestic Violence Program In Plea Deal

November 27th, 2015 - By Brande Victorian
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Instagram

Instagram

Glory Johnson is one step closer to putting her tumultuous relationship with fellow WNBA star Brittney Griner behind her. TMZ reports the estranged wife of Griner has a struck a plea deal in her domestic violence case.

In exchange for pleading guilty to disorderly contact, assault chargers were dropped against Johnson, who, as part of her sentence, has been ordered to complete a six-month domestic violence program. The pro athlete is also forbidden from owning a firearm and has been ordered not to harass Griner, who also struck a plea deal in her domestic violence case.

In April, both Griner and Johnson were arrested after the sister of the latter called 911 because of a domestic disturbance. As we reported at the time, “Cops who responded to the call say that both parties had ‘minor physical injures’ when they arrived. Griner had multiple cuts and a bite wound while Johnson was bleeding from a lip injury. A police report from the incident reveals that Griner and Johnson had been fighting for a few days and had been experiencing serious ‘relationship issues.'”

Despite this ruling, pair still isn’t completely done with one another, at least in the legal sense. A judge denied a request for an annulment 28 days after the couple walked down the aisle, stating “the case shall proceed on the Petition for Dissolution of Marriage with Minor Children.” Johnson gave birth to twin girls last month and the divorce proceeding is currently ongoing.