The Northfield News recently ran an article about the domestic violence response training our department was fortunate enough to host for criminal justice practitioners and providers. I received a number of phone calls and personal contacts as a result of the article. Several of the callers were interested in getting information about domestic violence and what they can do to get involved to prevent it. I’ve provided several listings and links to sites that provide quite a bit of information.

Locally, the Hope Center, formerly known as WomanSafe is our Rice County resource. Their toll free number is 800-607-2330. Their office number is 507-332-0882.


The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence is an excellent website to reference for information. They have a vast amount of information, data and a memorial page.

The National Domestic Violence Hotline hosts a web site about their domestic abuse hotline.

The key to prevention is to educate people to the warning signs of abuse and to mobilize the resources necessary to stop that abuse which has already begun. Statistics show that almost every case where an abusive relationship takes place, a serious injury or death will eventually result. If you are interested in learning more I would encourage you to contact the Hope Center.

I also received a several calls from individuals who had questions about how our police and prosecutors handle domestic violence calls. Paul Beaumaster, Rice County Attorney, or Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom and City Attorney Tim Morisette work very closely with our officers in cases of domestic violence.

Living free of domestic violence and its fear is a basic human rights issue. It is my hope that the awareness raised by this past week’s discussion can provide positive change in attitudes and responses to incidents of domestic violence.

About Gary Smith

Chief Smith has served over 31 years in the criminal justice field. He is currently a consultant assisting public and private organizations better establish community goals and ethical conduct with the members of their organizations. Chief Smith serves as a facilitator, lecturer, professor and other capacities both inside and outside the criminal justice field.
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