Sojourner House holds candlelight vigil for domestic violence victims

Sojourner House domestic violence vigil

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The Sojourner House held its annual candlelight vigil on Thursday afternoon.

The theme of the vigil this year was “Take a Stand against Domestic Violence.”

Domestic violence victim Joanne Aubrey shared her story of being shot with her own gun by her husband. She lost parts of five organs and was nearly paralyzed after the attack, which occurred in 1969.

At that time, Aubrey said the services provided to domestic violence victims were few and far between. Those accused, she said, were treated very differently.

“They typically sent abusers to anger management classes. That’s baloney,” she said. “They manage their anger just fine with the boss and friends. It’s not about anger management. It’s about abuse.”

Aubrey said she believes that, too often, the shame is put on the victim instead of the abuser. She was interested to hear about the Pickerington case, which is being followed by WKBN 27 First News.

Angela Luke, a mother of two, was charged with reckless homicide and aggravated vehicular homicide, after running her husband over with the car. Luke said she was trying to get away from her husband Daniel, who she said was beating her.

The couple’s 12-year-old daughter called 9-1-1 to report, “Dad’s hurting my mom. He’s pinning her to the ground. He’s making marks on my mom.” She also told dispatchers that her father had been drinking before he fell off and was run over by the family’s vehicle.

Luke, who was charged following her husband’s death, lost her teaching job because of state law.

“Unfortunately the women who are victims end up on the wrong side of the law,” Aubrey said of the case.

The criminal charges in the case were dropped, and the school superintendent listened to the 17-minute emergency call, and then reinstated her. A Fairfield County grand jury could still indict Angela Luke, however.

Aubrey said she hopes the next woman in a similar situation is not afraid to try and get away.

“It is a societal thing,” she said. “We need to make clear as a society that this is unacceptable.”

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