Harris County Was One of the Deadliest Places for Women in 2013

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In case you need another bit of horrible news, the folks over at Texas Council on Family Violence kicked off the start of Domestic Violence Awareness Month by releasing a report on women murdered by domestic violence. The annual report, based on data gathered and confirmed through law enforcement, district attorneys, county attorneys, the Department of Transportation and media, found that (at least) 119 women were murdered in Texas by their intimate partners in 2013.

Harris County and Dallas County share the dubious honor of tying for the most deaths -- each county had 20 domestic violence killings over the course of the year, the most in any county in the state. (Per capita, however, Dallas County has the unfortunate distinction of being the deadliest for domestic violence victims in Texas.)

The annual Honoring Texas Victims report includes brief narratives on all the women killed in 2013. The list includes Wende Marshall, 44, who police say was stabbed and killed by her boyfriend last November. Her burned body was found buried in the backyard of her home in Cypress. It also briefly outlines the details of the death of Marian Anderson-Hilton, who was allegedly shot to death by her husband in her home while her daughters were in the house last December.

Domestic violence is a serious issue, but it's even more chilling to look at the cold numbers that reflect so much grief tragedy and bloodshed. For instance, last year 76 percent of the victims were killed in their homes, according to the report. When the crime happened, 17 bystanders or witnesses were killed and 11 bystanders or witnesses were injured. Of the 119 murdered, 21 had taken steps to leave their significant other. More than half the victims were shot to death and about half the women were married to the men who killed them.

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