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New beginnings for local victims of domestic violence

Posted: 1:09 PM, Jul 08, 2018
Updated: 2018-07-08 14:09:56-04

NUECES COUNTY – Prosecutors with the newly developed Domestic Violence Bureau in Nueces Co. recognize the sensitive nature of these cases.

"These cases aren’t like any other case. They’re dealing with the dynamic of family relationships and emotional relationships that you don’t see in other cases. These cases require a little bit more time and work," Erica Matlock said.

When it comes to this phenomenon in the Coastal Bend, officials say a drastic change is necessary.

"The fact that we’re having this epidemic and that we’re not succeeding in doing what we need to do in society is what matters, and so we needed to try something different," Judge Inna Klein said.

More than 200 courts of this kind exist across the country, but here in Texas, this will be the first.

Beginning Monday, July 9th, the 214th District Court will be specifically designated for these complex cases.

Erica Matlock with the District Attorney’s Office will serve as the special prosecutor.

Matlock said this will not only trim the caseload and prevent backlog within the county, but more importantly, will improve lives and inspire long-term change.

"Defendants are going to expect progressive punishment if they continue to re-offend. We’re also going to be able to come together with all the stakeholders in the community and find out what resources we have to best serve not only the victims, but the offenders as well," Matlock said.

The 214th District Court will serve as a glimmer of hope for some of our area’s most vulnerable victims.