Murder/Suicide In NW OKC Raises Concerns Over Domestic Violence
OKLAHOMA CITY - Police released the names of the couple found dead in their northwest Oklahoma City home Saturday night. They say 24-year-old Baanh Dinh shot his wife Priscilla before turning the gun on himself.
This is just the latest in a string of domestic violence related deaths in the metro in the past few months.
District Attorney David Prater told News 9 in most of the domestic violence related cases he sees, a friend or family member often knows about the problems, but fails to report it to authorities.
And that alone can help save someone's life.
This past Saturday, police were called to check on the welfare of Baanh Dinh and his wife Priscilla Dinh-Kittelson at their northwest Oklahoma City home. The two were found dead inside.
"They seemed normal. I can't believe that happened," neighbor Jason Brown said.
The couple had filed for divorce, and it had just become final three weeks ago. And police say they had been called out to the home once before back in November.
"We want to say it's easy to escape domestic violence but it's not," Deb Stanaland said.
Deb Stanaland is with the YWCA, a place where families can turn to for help. She says one of the reasons women don't report domestic violence or leave their abuser is because of money.
"Women who are being abused and men who are being abused don't like to talk about it they are embarrassed to talk about it, they are afraid of the abuser," Stanaland said.
Oklahoma used to be 15th in the nation for domestic related deaths. Now it is 11th, something that alarms even seasoned DA's.
"Unfortunately in Oklahoma we have about 84 domestic violence murders in the state every year 84," Prater said.
In the past three months alone, a total of five women and three kids have been killed in what are believed to be domestic-related attacks.
Jaime Adams and her unborn baby were killed back in December. Jessica McPherson Brown and her unborn child were killed in January.
Tara Johnston and her 3-year-old daughter were killed last month.
Last week, a young woman was run over and killed by her boyfriend.
"This is not something we can be silent about. It is a killer," Prater said.
Prater says 95 percent of people killed in domestic violence situations had never contacted law enforcement for help, and neither had their friends or family.
One thing you can do if you or a loved one is in an abusive relationship is to contact the YWCA safe-line at 800-522-SAFE. You can remain anonymous.