Mayor Robert E. Minsky

Domestic Violence Security Program

The time with the greatest potential for violence is after a victim of domestic violence receives an injunction for protection that forces the abuser to leave the home. Most of these victims do not have the financial means to pay for extra security. The Port St. Lucie Police Department recognized the need for these victims to be able to remain in their homes with less fear. Through the generosity of local businesses, that task was accomplished through the Domestic Violence Security Program.

The Scotts Alarm Company agreed to donate three wireless security systems to install in the homes of these victims at no cost to the victims or taxpayers. Within 36 hours of notification, Scott Alarm representatives install the alarm, while police officers provide security in case the perpetrator returns to the residence. These alarms cover every entryway into the home. Victims are also provided with a pendant alarm. This can be worn outside, while traveling to the car or mailbox, and will activate the alarm if the victim is approached by the aggressor.

Citizens upgrading their cellular phones to digital donated their analog phones for use in the program. Wireless Communications, a local AT&T authorized dealer, agreed to program these phones at no cost for 911 access. Now victims can feel secure away from home with the knowledge that they have a means to summon law enforcement assistance, no matter what their location.

In addition, Security Consultants, Inc., donated over 20 personal audio alarms to the program. These personal alarms can be carried anywhere and emit a loud audio signal when the key is pulled from the device. Dennis Olson, the president of this company, has indicated that he will provide additional alarms if necessary.

The Domestic Violence Security Program can provide all or part of the above security measures depending on the circumstances of the case and potential danger to the victim. The program's first alarm was installed on January 30, 1997.

The success of this program is easily recognized by the statements of the victims the program was devised for. The first alarm recipient was a woman with three small children who stated that she was able to "take her first night-time show in months without fear." The second recipient was "able to stop sleeping in the closet with a gun close at hand," in fear that her ex-husband was lurking outside. She also has small children to protect. The stalking victim who received the third alarm said, "The Port St. Lucie Police Department and Scott Alarm have gone above and beyond to protect me. Thank you for caring and allowing me to feel safe."

CONTACT: Michele Laboskie, Domestic Violence Case Coordinator, Port St. Lucie Police Department, 121 SW Port St. Lucie Boulevard, Port St. Lucie, FL 34984, Telephone - (561) 871-5037, Fax - (561) 340-2013.

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The United States Conference of Mayors

J. Thomas Cochran, Executive Director
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