Lancashire TelegraphEast Lancs domestic abuse victims urged to speak out after murder (From Lancashire Telegraph)

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East Lancs domestic abuse victims urged to speak out after murder

Lancashire Telegraph: Former beautician Cherylee Shennan Former beautician Cherylee Shennan

WOMEN in East Lancashire who are experiencing domestic abuse are being encouraged to seek help.

Councillors, MPs and domestic violence charities have urged women to come forward in aftermath of the murder of Cherylee Shennan in Rawtenstall earlier this year.

Paul O’Hara was sentenced to spend the rest of his life in prison on Monday after he killed Cherylee, 40, because he was afraid she had told police about how he had previously assaulted her.

O’Hara had only been out on life licence for 23 months, after serving 14 years behind bars for the murder of Janine Waterworth in 1998.

Rossendale and Darwen MP Jake Berry said: “There is no excuse for domestic violence and I would encourage every victim to come forward, to help tackle it here in East Lancashire.

“The recent case of Cherylee Shennan has brought the dangers of abusive partners into sharp focus, and I would urge all victims to seek help.”

A spokeswoman for the STAR Centre in Rossendale said: “I would very much like to encourage anyone who think they might be experiencing domestic abuse to get in touch with their local service or phone the national helpline (0808 2000247). It is free advice and information and your call will be treated as confidential.

“There are services out there. You do not have to experience this alone and everyone has a right to live their life free of fear.”

A spokeswoman for Harv, a domestic violence charity covering Hyndburn and the Ribble Valley, said: “Please don’t be afraid to make contact. We can support you while you’re in an abusive relationship or help you to leave. We understand how difficult it can be to pick up the phone to make that first contact — please be assured you will be treated with respect and sensitivity and most importantly listened to.”

Following Cherylee’s killing, questions have been asked of the Parole Board, over why O’Hara was freed and allowed to kill again.

The Ministry of Justice, which runs the Probation Service, said learning points had already been identified.

A spokesman said: “Our sympathies are with the victims and their families of this horrific attack. Public protection is our first priority and we are determined to have the best possible systems in place to supervise offenders in the community.

“Paul O’Hara alone is responsible for these shocking crimes and, as with any case involving a serious further offence, the National Probation Service has undertaken an investigation into the case."

Comments (6)

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5:54pm Wed 2 Jul 14

barryinthailand says...

WOMEN in East Lancashire who are experiencing domestic abuse are being encouraged to seek help.

Well reported Hannah, unfortunately all your sources said anyone suffering domestic abuse could seek help. Or do you believe its a girly thing?
WOMEN in East Lancashire who are experiencing domestic abuse are being encouraged to seek help. Well reported Hannah, unfortunately all your sources said anyone suffering domestic abuse could seek help. Or do you believe its a girly thing? barryinthailand
  • Score: 6

11:05pm Wed 2 Jul 14

Graham Hartley says...

"East Lancs domestic abuse victims urged to speak out after (their?) murder"
"East Lancs domestic abuse victims urged to speak out after (their?) murder" Graham Hartley
  • Score: -6

2:40am Thu 3 Jul 14

globetrot says...

Lets not also forget the abuse by female perpetrators.
Lets not also forget the abuse by female perpetrators. globetrot
  • Score: 11

6:38am Thu 3 Jul 14

Excluded again says...

It may be difficult, but if you are in a violent, abusive relationship, get out. But more importantly don't just tell the police, tell your family and friends. Try to make sure that no-one else enters into a relationship with the abuser, that everyone knows to stay away from them.

There is no shame in standing up to a violent abuser. there is no shame in telling people the truth about a violent abuser. The shame is wholly in the hands of the abuser, not the victim.
It may be difficult, but if you are in a violent, abusive relationship, get out. But more importantly don't just tell the police, tell your family and friends. Try to make sure that no-one else enters into a relationship with the abuser, that everyone knows to stay away from them. There is no shame in standing up to a violent abuser. there is no shame in telling people the truth about a violent abuser. The shame is wholly in the hands of the abuser, not the victim. Excluded again
  • Score: 8

7:35am Thu 3 Jul 14

BuckoTheMoose says...

Quite right. In the wake of the Rolf Harris trial, the Chief Prosecutor has re-stated that men accused of sexual assault should be named publicly on arrest.

If an innocent man is accused of rape, naming him can ruin his life. If victims came forward at the moment the assault happens, we wouldn't need to name names in rape trials until we were sure of the defendants guilt, but we seem happy to sacrifice mens live on the alter of 'helping victims'.

Women - If your partner abuses you, tell the police. Do it straight away. Don't wait 30 or 40 years for compensation to be available, don't wait until someone else makes a complaint and certainly don't lie to the police about the abuse, as the woman in this story did.

And once you've done that, don't reconcile with your abusive partner in the hope that he will change. Get out and stay out for good.
Quite right. In the wake of the Rolf Harris trial, the Chief Prosecutor has re-stated that men accused of sexual assault should be named publicly on arrest. If an innocent man is accused of rape, naming him can ruin his life. If victims came forward at the moment the assault happens, we wouldn't need to name names in rape trials until we were sure of the defendants guilt, but we seem happy to sacrifice mens live on the alter of 'helping victims'. Women - If your partner abuses you, tell the police. Do it straight away. Don't wait 30 or 40 years for compensation to be available, don't wait until someone else makes a complaint and certainly don't lie to the police about the abuse, as the woman in this story did. And once you've done that, don't reconcile with your abusive partner in the hope that he will change. Get out and stay out for good. BuckoTheMoose
  • Score: 3

10:06am Thu 3 Jul 14

Casper's mum says...

Unfortunately the abuser has usually managed to cut off the victim from their family and friends so s/he feels there is no-one to turn to. The fear of what the abuser will do if they are reported is overwhelming. Victims of domestic violence can come to believe that the behaviour is the norm, or that it was just another one off which won't happen again. They believe the apologies. They believe the violent behaviour is their fault

We need to tell people to get help the first time they are a victim of domestic violence because there is no excuse for it and it is never a one off incident.
Unfortunately the abuser has usually managed to cut off the victim from their family and friends so s/he feels there is no-one to turn to. The fear of what the abuser will do if they are reported is overwhelming. Victims of domestic violence can come to believe that the behaviour is the norm, or that it was just another one off which won't happen again. They believe the apologies. They believe the violent behaviour is their fault We need to tell people to get help the first time they are a victim of domestic violence because there is no excuse for it and it is never a one off incident. Casper's mum
  • Score: 2

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