Home » Honoring Texas Victims: Bexar County is One of the Top Five Counties with the Highest Number of Domestic Violence Homicides in the State with 11 Murders

Honoring Texas Victims: Bexar County is One of the Top Five Counties with the Highest Number of Domestic Violence Homicides in the State with 11 Murders

Aaron Setliff, TCFV, 512-590-9808 asetliff@tcfv.org

Honoring Texas Victims: 146 Women Killed in Texas in 2016 – Bexar County is One of the Top Five Counties with the Highest Number of Domestic Violence Homicides in the State with 11 Murders

 New Report Released During Domestic Violence Awareness Month Shows Increase in the Number of Women Killed in San Antonio   

San Antonio, Texas – October 20, 2016 – The Texas Council on Family Violence (TCFV) today released a new report that shows 146 women were killed in domestic violence murders in Texas by their husband, ex-husband, intimate partner, boyfriend or ex-boyfriend.  Fatalities occurred in 55 Texas counties.  24 family members and friends were also killed (this includes 13 children); 4 family members and friends were injured during the incidents.  This represents the largest number of related victims since 2011.

Every year more than 100 women are killed in domestic violence homicides in Texas.   This year’s numbers are a reduction from the deaths in 2015 when the Texas Council reported the highest number of deaths in Texas since the Council began releasing its’ report.

But, this year’s report shows Bexar County increased the number of homicides from last year from 9 to 11. In 2014, there were 5 homicides in Bexar County.   Bexar joins Collin, Dallas and Tarrant Counties in North Texas as four of the top five counties with the highest number of homicides in the state.  Harris County in Houston continues to have the highest number of domestic violence homicides in the state of Texas.

Intimate partner homicides end the lives of women who have roles as loving mothers, caring family members, and engaged community members. The women whose deaths are detailed here represent lives that left indelible marks on those around them. Many of them are remembered for the strong bonds they formed in their families and with their friends and for offering those around them kindness, compassion, encouragement and smiles that brightened rooms. Family members often described these women as the glue that held people together’ and ‘willing to do anything for anyone’. They took pride in their roles as mothers and in the work that they did as students and in their careers. TCFV joins their families, friends and communities in mourning their loss.

146 women were killed in Texas in 2016.

158 women were killed in Texas in 2015, the deadliest year for women in Texas.   132 women were killed in domestic violence murders in 2014.  119 women were killed in 2013.  114 women were killed in 2012.  102 women were killed in 2011.  

Other Key Stats from the report:

  • Counties with the most fatalities are: Harris (28), Dallas (13), Tarrant (13), Bexar (11), Collin (6)
  • Tarrant, Bexar, Collin each experienced increases from 2015; Harris is down from 34, and Dallas remains the same as last year.
  • 40% of women killed in 2016 had ended the relationship or were in the process of leaving when they were murdered.
  • 68% of perpetrators used a firearm to murder their female partner.
  • 77% of perpetrators killed their partners in a home.
  • Women between the ages of 20-39 represent over half of the total number of victims
  • Youngest Victim: 15
  • Oldest Victim: 92

Marta Palez, Chief Executive Officer of Family Violence Prevention Services, Inc.

The Battered Women and Children’s Shelter, Amy Zuniga, a domestic violence survivor, Bexar County Sheriff Javier Salazar San Antonio Police Department Asst. Chief James Flavin, Willie Ng – Chief Investigator w/ the Bexar County Criminal District Attorney’s Office joined Texas Council on Family Violence CEO Gloria Terry to unveil the annual report titled: Honoring Texas Victims: Family Violence Fatalities.”

“146 innocent lives were lost and families were forever changed in senseless domestic violence murders in Texas.  11 lives were lost in Bexar County.  We are immensely saddened by the tragic loss of life and we remember the families of those who lost loved ones and we especially want to remember the 146 families who lost a loved one this year.   When a tragic loss like this happens, it reminds all of us, how dangerous domestic violence can be to a family and a community and how much more work there is to be accomplished to ensure victims find help and safety before it’s too late,” said Gloria A. Terry, CEO of the Texas Council on Family Violence.  “Honoring Texas Victims: Family Violence Fatalities recognizes all Texas family violence victims lost in this tragic crime. “

The release of the 2016 Honoring Victims Report coincides with Domestic Violence Awareness Month, which is in October.  Domestic violence all too often ends with tragic results.  

“During Domestic Violence Awareness Month, we focus on three important elements of ending violence – supporting survivors, holding abusers accountable and perhaps, most important, preventing the violence before it begins by challenging the underlying attitudes and beliefs that feed violent behavior.  We are proud to partner with other agencies and organizations locally and across the state that share our commitment to ending violence on all three fronts. Together we strive to make violence a part of our past and we redouble our efforts to educate the public and try to prevent domestic violence fatalities in the future,” said Chief Executive Officer Marta Palez of Family Violence Prevention Services, Inc., The Battered Women and Children’s Shelter.

The report released by the Texas Council on Family Violence and compiled from data from the Texas Department of Public Safety, Texas law enforcement agencies and media reports list names of the victims and gives brief accounts of their deaths.

Texas Council on Family Violence is the only 501(c) 3 nonprofit coalition in Texas dedicated solely to creating safer communities and freedom from family violence. With a state-wide reach and direct local impact, TCFV, with the collective strength of more than 1000 members, shapes public policy, equips service providers, and initiates strategic prevention efforts. Visit us online at http://www.tcfv.org/