Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

Utah Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson threw her support behind a bill to require police officers to conduct lethality assessments when responding to domestic violence cases.

Henderson spoke to a Senate committee on Tuesday, alongside her aunt and uncle, whose daughter, Amanda Mayne, was killed by Mayne’s ex-husband Taylor Martin last August. Utah law enforcement agencies have voluntarily used an 11-question assessment for years, though, no assessment was completed in Mayne’s case.

“I feel I represent my family and my cousin, but I represent everybody in this state as well,” Henderson told lawmakers. “And there are a lot of people, a lot of victims, a lot of families that have suffered.”

Henderson said Martin had a long history of violent behavior — including threatening to kill former Utah Gov. Gary Herbert — and thinks that a lethality assessment may have made a difference.

“There is a long history here of things that were caught, things that were not caught, dots that were not connected. The circle had not been closed,” she said. “… We need to connect the dots. We need to have information for law enforcement as they are in the situation, to know if this offender is a high-risk offender — if this offender is someone like Taylor Martin, who has a high risk of being violent or escalating.”

Our family is reeling from the devastating and senseless loss of my sweet cousin, cut down in the prime of life — a victim of the sort of violence that has become far too prevalent in our state. We are shocked and grieving. We will miss this precious soul and her golden smile.

— Deidre Henderson (@DeidreHenderson) August 18, 2022

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Source:: Deseret News – Utah News


Utah domestic violence resources: Support for lethality assessment

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