Irish woman wins historic right to domestic abuse visa after long battle
Waterford woman’s 14-year fight to secure future in the U.S. ends in victory
No one has the right to abuse anyone. The true story below is illustrative of this point. Despite enormous obstacles justice was done.
Valerie O’Donnell from Waterford was pregnant and separated from the father of her yet-unborn children, Rob.
He came to her home drunk and attacked her, throwing her against a wall and choking her. After the attack, Valerie was too afraid to report him to the police, as she had no support or family in the United States; she had recently moved here from Ireland.
Valerie moved again a year later, but Rob found out where she lived with their children. He kicked Valerie’s door open, chased her into her bedroom, and beat her until she was unconscious.
Valerie’s neighbor found her and called the police. Rob was arrested and Valerie obtained an order of protection against him, and later procured custody of their children.
Undaunted Rob used the visitation of their children to continue the abuse - he was hostile and aggressive towards Valerie during drop-offs and pick-ups of their children, left her insulting, abusive phone messages calling her names and threatening to have her deported, and accused her of not being a good mother.
Over seven years, Valerie obtained six orders of protection against Rob because of his continued harassment, threats, and intimidating phone calls and behavior.
Several years into Rob’s campaign of abuse, he called Valerie over twenty times on her cell phone and home phone in one day. He left messages demanding to know who was watching their children and threatening to kill Valerie.
She also was wary of Rob following her to work several times, and suspected that he was watching her home. Valerie was terrified for her and her children’s safety, so she filed a police report about Rob’s harassment.
Rob was arrested and Valerie met with staff at the District Attorney’s office several times. She attended criminal court over the course of the case, and Rob pleaded guilty to harassment several months later.
While no story speaks to every situation, Valerie’s experience mirrors that of many women and men in the United States who are abused by husbands, wives and partners. Domestic violence is one person exerting control and power over their partner, using whatever tools are available. Often times, the abuser will use their partner’s immigration status as a means to tightly control her or his life—threatening to have someone deported, telling her or him that the police won’t believe them or the police will arrest them instead of the abuser, or claiming that people who are not U.S. Citizens don’t have rights.
Many persons without current immigration status fear calling the police because of the belief that the police will inquire about their immigration status, and that will lead to them being deported by ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement).
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This is exactly why we need nation-wide laws against ALL forms of discrimination....including ALL employers.Katherine Webb and the morbid depths of US sports 'journalism'
@DaddyMac22: Um, yeah. Exactly like I said. It's a FAN MESSAGE BOARD. Is that what you call "US sports journalism," as the title of thisKatherine Webb and the morbid depths of US sports 'journalism'
@marpag: If you had actually read the article, the subject was the comment section, and the dearth of intelligence in same. However, have fun with youGay teacher fired from Catholic school after applying for same-sex marriage license
Agreed Pat123. The vast majority of pedophiles are heterosexual and it is absolute ignorance and crass bigotry to suggest the evilness is perpetrated