I was appalled by your coverage of Jammie Shantel Street's death at the hands of her abusive boyfriend ("Wake couple had a tumultuous past," Oct. 9). The article provided a litany of reasons why Street was to blame for her own death, including Wake District Attorney Colon Willoughby's explanation that they were in some relationship that she chose to maintain.
Women don't stay in abusive relationships because they want to. They often stay because they're afraid of what their abusers will do to themselves or their children if they try to leave. According the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, women who leave their batterers are at 75 percent greater risk of severe injury or death.
If you had contacted an expert on domestic violence or at least researched the topic, the story could have helped readers understand the frightening patterns of control in abusive relationships, the gendered nature of abuse or the complex reasons victims choose to stay. Instead, the paper continued a long trend of blaming women for domestic violence, shifting focus away from perpetrators. When will we begin holding abusive men accountable?
Robert Pleasants, Durham