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Turn to Tara team looks at new domestic violence laws implemented across tri-state following NJ murder-suicide

Tragedy struck a Salem County, New Jersey apartment complex on Feb. 5, 2020, when police found a woman and her two children stabbed to death. Years later, questions still remain - namely whether their deaths could have been prevented.

Lee Danuff and Tara Rosenblum

Apr 22, 2024, 10:40 AM

Updated 31 days ago

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The Turn to Tara team is taking a closer look at new domestic violence laws being implemented across the tri-state following a murder-suicide in New Jersey.
Tragedy struck a Salem County, New Jersey apartment complex on Feb. 5, 2020, when police found a woman and her two children stabbed to death.
Police say the man who stabbed them then killed himself in a nearby wooded area.
Years later, questions still remain - namely whether their deaths could have been prevented.
Relatives claim Ruth Reyes Severino had a restraining order against Eugenio Severino and that she begged the managers of her apartment complex to change her door locks.
That reportedly never happened - allowing her husband to walk in and kill her.
Westchester County Legislator David Imamura is hoping to prevent a similar tragedy in the area and has pitched a bill that would set aside county funds to pay for lock changes for all victims of domestic violence.
"You should not feel, you should not, your safety should not be at the sufferance of your landlord, right? If you are a victim of domestic violence, the County of Westchester can and should ensure your safety by changing the locks to your home," he says.
Imamura says the county would also provide shelter to victims while the locks are being changed.
His plan is modeled after a similar ordinance that passed in New York City last month.
It's the landlords' responsibility in Connecticut to change the locks - not the county - when a victim asks for help. The changes were spelled out in a new state law that kicked in one year after the tragic New Jersey murder-suicide, and now Albany lawmakers are reviewing similar legislation for New York.


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