Protection Orders Are A Tool–But No Panacea–For Domestic Abuse


The murder of a San Diego college student, apparently by her estranged husband, is calling attention to the limits of restraining orders, reports the city’s Union-Tribune. Those who work with domestic violence victims say restraining orders will keep certain abusers away, but they acknowledge the document is not a panacea when it comes to protecting victims. “It's an important tool, but we try to sort through with folks there are risk factors,” said Verna Griffin-Tabor, executive director of Center for Community Solutions, a domestic violence and rape crisis agency. “In some cases, it's been the very thing that's protected people, and other times it's like putting gasoline on a burning fire.”

San Diego City College student Diana Gonzalez, 19, requested a temporary restraining order against husband, Armando Gabriel Perez, on Sept. 28 after she told police that he had kidnapped and raped her days earlier. Perez, 37, was arrested but released from jail after the District Attorney's Office declined to file charges. Perez was served with the protective order before being released from jail. The woman’s body was found last week in a men’s restroom on campus. Authorities have issued an arrest warrant for Perez, who is believed to have fled to Mexico.

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