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Domestic Violence: Getting your loved one out

"He ambushed me and beat me with a baseball bat in the head, suffocated me, duck taped me, threw me in a large garbage bin,” Teri Jendusa Nicolai describes the horror she went through as her ex-husband tried killing her. The attack was five years after Teri made the courageous decision to leave her abusive husband.

She lives to tell that story.

But, that's not the case for an Illinois woman who sought help from a Mt.Pleasant friend, hid from her husband, only for him to track her down and kill her Wednesday night. He beat her with a hatchet.

"That's the first thing you think of, well come over here, you can be safe here and you don't realize that those types of people are going to stay up all night, days just to search for that person, going every place they know she has a friend," Teri said.

Milwaukee Women's Center counselor Dana McKaufman says it's not enough for a woman to just leave, a plan has to made, a safe place that is sometimes away from friends and family.

"We have to use some of the old techniques, sometimes it might not be safe for me to stay where I'm going. I might need to go into a shelter," Mckaufman said.

However, that doesn't mean that family should back off. Teri says even when a victim seems reluctant loved ones should still offer support.

"So I think just being there for her, listening to her, being that support, letting her know there are resources available."

Also, realize the complex nature of domestic violence and that there isn't always an easy way out.

"From the outside it looks like a simple fix, just stop doing this, stop doing that, just leave. There are so many issues that, that woman has to deal with," Teri said.

Teri also plans to petition the governor next month to offer domestic violence education in schools to counter the behavior before it even starts.

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