MOBILE, Ala (WALA) -- Day in and day out police officers can respond to many different types of calls, like traffic crashes and burglaries. But certain ones can be more dangerous like domestic situations.

“Domestic violence is one of the worst calls an officer can encounter,” said Mobile Police Officer Katrina Frazier.

Frazier may have a different role now, but after working in MPD’s Domestic Violence Unit for about a year she knows the danger.

“They don’t know what they’re walking into,” she said. “All they know is that they received a call that requires them to show up and act as quickly as possible and in some cases those instances can be very volatile.”

Weapons add an unpredictable element to the police response of a domestic violence situation.

The incident in Wilcox County that left a sheriff’s deputy injured and a former sheriff’s deputy dead shows that.

“When we arrive on the scene we know one gun is in play and that’s the gun that we have with us when we arrive where you don’t know if the offender has a weapon on them,” Frazier said.

There are people who try to help victims before police need to be called.

In Mobile, Penelope House is a local domestic violence shelter. Executive Director Toni Ann Torrans says the number of clients her organization is helping is running about average. She says the Wilcox County shooting shows how leaving a situation can be hard.

“It’s about power and control and a lot of times when victims are leaving that’s when there’s like an 80% increase in the chance of something explosive happening,” she said.

Frazier says she hopes the Wilcox County shooting does not deter people in need from calling for help. Their goal is to diffuse a situation and keep everyone safe.

“If an individual is being abused they should definitely feel comfortable calling the police that is our job, that is what we signed up to do is to protect the citizens of the cities in which we reside in,” Frazier said.

If you are in a domestic violence situation there are resources to help you.

In Mobile, you can call Penelope House’s 24-hour hotline at 251-342-8994.

In Baldwin County you can call the Lighthouse at 251-947-6008.

All content © 2002-2021 Gray Television, Inc., WALA; Mobile, AL. (A Gray Media Group, Inc. Station). All Rights Reserved.  

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