Kentucky lawmakers looking to crack down on domestic violence - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Kentucky lawmakers looking to crack down on domestic violence

Kentucky law allows civil protection orders in three scenarios: for married couples; if the two have a child together; or if a couple lives with each other. This gives them protection for two weeks based simply on their accusations (Photo: FOX19 NOW) Kentucky law allows civil protection orders in three scenarios: for married couples; if the two have a child together; or if a couple lives with each other. This gives them protection for two weeks based simply on their accusations (Photo: FOX19 NOW)
(FOX19) -

Ohio and Kentucky are two of four states in the country where the victim of domestic violence can't get a civil protection order, if the couple is just dating.

But now Kentucky lawmakers are trying to crack down.

This is something lawmakers in Kentucky have tried to tackle for years and many believe there couldn't be a better time to strengthen the law.

"I think it's important to protect people," Victoria Morgan said.

Victoria Morgan was once a victim of domestic violence when she was both dating and married. She even had a protection order against someone. Years have passed and today she has a non-profit called "She's Healed" to help other victims.

"It's more than just protecting teenagers, it also protects older individuals as well that are in dating relationships," Morgan said.

Right now, Kentucky law allows civil protection orders in three scenarios: for married couples; if the two have a child together; or if a couple lives with each other. This gives them protection for two weeks based simply on their accusations.

"We can't predict when we'll experience violence whether it's in a dating relationship or marriage," Morgan said.

Opponents of the bill argue there are already options in place for dating couples, including filing a criminal complaint. But Morgan says that process can be too slow, and before help comes, it could be too late.

"Okay you can go down and file a complaint, you may have to come to court and another court date and that could take years," Morgan said.

While Ohio happens to also be one of the four states where dating couples can't get a civil protection order, the only difference is they have some protection with stalking laws.

Morgan says it's time for Kentucky and Ohio both to join the majority, but in the meantime, she's taking steps on her own to protect the ones she loves most.

"My daughter is almost a teenager and I would like to think that she's fortunate enough to go through life and never experience those types of things but unfortunately that may not be the case," said Morgan.

A recent poll by the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky found that 80 percent of people would favor a change in the dating law.

This bill has previously cleared the Kentucky house, but failed in the Senate. Lawmakers are again going to address it this session.

If you or someone you know suffers from domestic violence you can call Women Helping Women at 513-977-5541 and their 24-hour crisis line at 51-3381-5610.

or visit any of these women's shelters in Cincinnati:

  • Heart to Heart: P.O. Box 37583 Cincinnati, OH 45222
  • YWCA of Greater Cincinnati Inc: 898 Walnut St Cincinnati, OH 45202
  • City Gospel Mission: 1419 Elm Street Cincinnati, OH 45202
  • Bethany House Services, Inc: 1841 Fairmount Ave Cincinnati, OH 45214

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