Thu., Feb. 2, 2012 9:05 AM EDT
Tiffany Lawson, 31, was holding her 18-month-old son in her arms during an argument with the child’s father, Kevin Ford Jr., when she suddenly ran to an upstairs window in her Cleveland home and called to a neighbor for help.
Lawson then tossed her son out the window to the neighbor standing outside before being chased down by Ford, sprayed with lighter fluid, and set on fire.
Lawson tore her burning clothes off and jumped out the window to escape her boyfriend’s fury. She had first-degree burns on her right hand and leg, and suffered a broken right elbow and arm in the fall.
The toddler was not hurt.
Ford fled the scene, but was later arrested and is in police custody.
This woman’s quick thinking and protective instinct likely saved her son, and herself, from permanent injury or death.
Hopefully, she will use those smarts to buck the statistic that says domestic violence victims generally forgive the crime and reunite with the perpetrator.
Alarming domestic violence statistics:
- Every nine seconds in the U.S. a woman is assaulted or beaten.
- Every day in the US, more than three women are murdered by their husbands or boyfriends.
- Around the world, at least 1 in 3 women has been beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused during her lifetime. Most often, the abuser is a member of her own family.
- Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women — more than car accidents, muggings, and rapes combined.
- Studies suggest that up to 10 million children witness some form of domestic violence annually.
- Nearly 1 in 5 teenage girls who have been in a relationship said a boyfriend threatened violence or self-harm if presented with a breakup.
- Ninety-two percent of women surveyed listed reducing domestic violence and sexual assault as their top concern.
- Domestic violence victims lose nearly eight million days of paid work per year in the U.S. alone — the equivalent of 32,000 full-time jobs.
- Based on reports from 10 countries, between 55 percent and 95 percent of women who had been physically abused by their partners had never contacted non-governmental organizations, shelters, or the police for help.
- The costs of intimate partner violence in the U.S. alone exceed $5.8 billion per year: $4.1 billion are for direct medical and health care services, while productivity losses account for nearly $1.8 billion.
- Men who as children witnessed their parents’ domestic violence were twice as likely to abuse their own wives than sons of nonviolent parents.
National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1−800−799−SAFE(7233)
Are you, or someone you love, in an abusive relationship? Continue to read the list of signs…