Victim wanted out of violent relationship - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Victim wanted out of violent relationship

June 17, 2006

Albany -- Police records show that a murdered Dougherty County detention officer may have been a victim of domestic violence. Police say Twenty-five year old Tasha George was shot to death Friday afternoon in the 24-hundred block of Temple Avenue by former boyfriend Travis Smith.

Smith had been arrested before for pushing her through a glass table.

George's neighbors who say that they didn't even know such abuse was going on, but wish they could have helped.

Neighbors say it just doesn't happen on Temple Avenue in Albany. Flashing lights, an ambulance, fire trucks and cop cars secured the scene of a murder Friday afternoon.

"I did not know about the abusive relationship," said next-door neighbor Tara Fleming.

The typically quiet residential street has neighbors wishing they could have helped the woman who lived here, 25-year-old Tasha George. Tara Fleming lives next-door and says she's noticed police were at George's house more than usual in the past two months.

"I guess she had some problems and she would call them. I didn't hear anything but just seeing the police cars back and forth over there, just assumed something was going on," said Fleming.

That something going on was apparently domestic abuse committed by George's former live-in boyfriend Travis Smith. We're told that George recently told Smith to move out. She changed her locks and installed a security system. They were steps out of the relationship neighbors say they would have helped George with, had they known the situation.

"If she would have come over or try to hide from him I would have let her in the house, and it feels really bad that she couldn't get out of that abusive relationship and that it ended so tragically," said neighbor Milada Carson.

Because the tragedy happened so close to home for Fleming and her daughter, she hopes other women in an abusive relationship can learn from this.

"Just get out, as soon as possible. Because you never know what's going on with that person when they might snap," said Fleming.

Temple Avenue is quiet and peaceful once again, but now more than ever neighbors here say the silence of domestic violence must be broken.

The Liberty House in Albany provides a safehaven for women who need to escape an abusive relationship. The crisis hotline number is 439-7065.

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