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'A recipe for domestic violence disasters' | Women's center sees uptick in calls during pandemic

Baytown shooting could be third domestic violence shooting from the past week.

HOUSTON, Texas — Baytown Police responded to a shooting Saturday morning that left a daughter dead and her mother in the hospital.

Police found the body of 17-year-old Jocelyn Chairez in the garage of the home. Her mother, Norma Martinez, was shot several times, but was still alive.

Martinez’s husband, Efrain Lucatero, was found dead in the yard. He appeared to have shot himself. 

Police are not yet saying if this shooting was domestic violence. But if it turns out to be just that, then, that would make it the third domestic violence shooting this week alone.  

RELATED: Woman hospitalized, teen girl killed during shooting at family home in Baytown

On Friday, two women were found dead after police said a man showed up to his ex-girlfriend’s apartment and killed both her and her friend.

RELATED: Police: This BMW may have been involved in a shooting that left 2 women dead

And on Monday, police say a Fort Bend ISD Police Officer shot his wife inside their home during a fight. She is expected to be okay. 

RELATED: Fort Bend ISD officer shoots wife during domestic dispute, HPD says

“We see calls spike from day to day, people are calling desperate, they need to get out, they are afraid," Chau Nguyen, chief public strategies officer at the Houston Area Women’s Center, said.

Nguyen said while we may never know the true motives behind these shootings, we do know the coronavirus and its related effects are having an impact.  

“We’re talking about economic pressures, a pandemic, social isolation. This combination is a recipe for domestic violence disasters," Nguyen said. 

Because of this increased stress, Nguyen says the women’s center has increased their safe harbor hotels, and they’ve created a website – nocovidabuse.org – as another resource during the pandemic. 

“They’re living in isolation with their abuser. These are terrible times, and what we’re witnessing right now is violence escalating," Nguyen said. 

She says even if you think there’s no way out, there always is. 

“We are still here for them. We believe them. Help is just a click away, a phone call away," Nguyen said. 

Visit the HAWC website: https://hawc.org/

These are their hotline numbers: 

  • Domestic Violence Hotline: (713) 528-2121
  • TDD Line: 713-528-3625
  • Toll Free: 1-800-256-0551
  • Sexual Assault Hotline: (713) 528-RAPE (7273)
  • TDD Line: 713-528-3691
  • Toll Free: 1-800-256-0661

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