Merseyside Police appeal for victims of domestic abuse to come forward
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We are appealing to victims of domestic abuse not to suffer in silence and to come forward to report abuse following the deaths of two women this week in Merseyside.
At around 8.30am on Wednesday (11 May), officers were called to a house on Radway Road in Huyton following the tragic death of 43-year-old Lorraine Cullen. A 21-year-old man from Liverpool, who was known to Ms Cullen, was arrested on suspicion of her murder and later section under the Mental Health Act.
At 7.15pm yesterday (Thursday 12 May) police were called to Vittoria Close in Birkenhead to a report that a body of a woman in her 50s had been found. Officers arrested a 51-year-old man, also known to the victim, on suspicion of her murder. He was taken into custody and is being questioned by police.
Chief Superintendent Ngaire Waine, who leads the Force’s activity targeting Violence Against Women and Girls, said: "This has been a week of tragedy for the families involved, and the deaths of both women have left their communities in Huyton and Birkenhead shocked and saddened.
"Rest assured, there are teams of detectives who are working day and night to establish the full circumstances of these terrible incidents and to make sure anyone found responsible faces justice.
"The families of the two women are receiving the support of specialist officers as they grieve for their loved ones, and that support will continue throughout as we strive to get the answers they deserve."
Chief Supt Waine added: “Merseyside Police is committed to working together with communities and partner agencies to tackle all violence against women and girls.
“A key part of that is ensuring victims of domestic abuse feel they will be believed and supported when they report offending to us, and we have developed a programme of work to ensure that we do everything in our power to support victims, target perpetrators and reduce violence.
“We want to continue the strides we have made to making sure Merseyside is an environment where women and girls are safe and feel they can pursue their daily lives free from fear and harassment.
“Domestic abuse is a complex issue and can take many forms. It can be psychological, financial, sexual, emotional and physical and we want to raise awareness of the support that is available to anyone who is or has experienced domestic abuse or has been affected by it so that nobody else has to suffer or silence or go through what they have been through.
“We work closely with local domestic support organisations, local authorities, safeguarding teams and charities to ensure that services and ongoing support are available, including access to refuges.
“We have a number of specialist departments within the police to investigate these crimes but it’s important that we all work together to support survivors and collectively work to prevent these crimes occurring in the first place by raising awareness.” There are a number of ways to report:
Call us - If you are in immediate danger, always call 999. If you ring 999 and are not in a safe position to speak to us then cough, or tap, the phone and press 55, when prompted. This will alert the operator that you need assistance and we will provide support.
Online – You can report online domestic abuse to us online Report domestic abuse | Merseyside Police and someone will get back to you, via your specified method, within 24 hours.
All reports are treated seriously, they will be investigated sensitively and we will work with our partners to offer support and keep victims safe. We understand that every domestic incident is unique and we will do everything we can to ensure perpetrators are brought to justice, so the victims of this terrible and under-reported crime are protected and their needs are put first.
Merseyside Police would also appeal to families and friends to keep an eye out for signs that someone may be a victim of domestic abuse. Sometimes victims are unable to contact the police, which is why it’s so important the people around them who suspect something is going can do it on their behalf.
If you have any non-urgent information on domestic abuse – if you are a victim or believe someone you know is a victim - you can contact direct message @MerPolCC on Twitter, ‘Merseyside Police Contact Centre’ on Facebook or contact @CrimestoppersUK, anonymously on 0800 555 111.
Further support can also be found at these national agencies: