Although the majority of reported cases of domestic violence and sexual assault are committed by men, it is not exclusive. This story is not only sad, but it is a case of extreme domestic violence committed by a woman.
The Tribal Police had been called to the home of 32-year-old Elaina Rose Welch several times. She lives on the Barona Indian Reservation north of San Diego. The police were called just after noon on Friday claiming that her child was dead. The caller is believed to have been Welch. Almost simultaneously a call was received at dispatch that someone was attempting suicide.
When police arrived at the home on Quincy Canyon Road they had no idea what to expect. After a ninety-minute standoff a man emerged; police talked to him. Just after he re-entered the home they heard a gunshot. A few moments later Welch walked outside the home carrying a shotgun; she dropped it on the ground and was arrested.
Police entered the home and discovered an unidentified Hispanic male dead from a gunshot wound in the chest.
Relatives informed the authorities that Welch had a three-year-old boy. Police began to search the house and surrounding area. The child was eventually found in a freezer underneath frozen food.
Approximately 1 a.m. on Saturday morning Welch was booked on two counts of murder; she was held without bail.
Domestic violence is not gender specific. It is defined as domination by one person over another through, fear, intimidation and threats. Persons suffering abuse from domestic violence include intimate partners and family members. The mental abuse escalates into physical violence and sometimes death.
Although statistically 25 percent of all women will become victims of domestic violence, nearly three million men are also abused in the United States. Nearly two thirds of cases of domestic violence occur in the home. Although the reason for the abuse has no singular definition, drugs and/or alcohol are frequently involved. Domestic violence is the greatest reason for homelessness related to families.
Statistically the largest number of victims are women between the ages of 20 and 24. Four million women are abused by their partners; one in three female homicides are the result of domestic violence.
The effects of domestic violence are numerous. More than three million children witness violence in their homes and often become victims of neglect and abuse. Many of these children suffer health problems such as headaches and gastr-intestinal illness.
Victims suffer from extreme depression and anxiety; flashbacks are common. Other health problems develop over time such as heart disease.
Women who arrive at the emergency room after physical abuse report that they have been socially isolated and have few financial resources.
The overall cost of services related to domestic abuse including law enforcement, medical aid, and mental health assistance is more than 37 billion dollars.
If victims of domestic abuse fail to receive treatment, they frequently consider suicide. Girls who witness the abuse and do not receive aid often become victims of domestic violence as teenagers and young women themselves. Boys become abusers themselves as adults.
By James Turnage