Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Angela Alsobrooks

(Updated 8/30/2014) Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Angela Alsobrooks is placing a renewed emphasis on curbing domestic violence in the county with a series of programs seeking to spread awareness of the problem and provide resources to both victims and offenders.

“We are seeking peace and unity in our families…there is nothing more important than our families,” Alsobrooks said at an Aug. 18 press conference. The event was one in a series of public appearances on the topic, which included a stop on the “NewsTalk” program on D.C. television station WJLA.

“Domestic violence accounts for 40 percent of homicides in P.G. County,” Alsobrooks said. “It has to be resolved as a family and community issue, it has to be resolved that way. We are arresting and prosecuting these convictions but it is not enough. What we have to focus on is the mental health crisis…the drug addiction and hopelessness has to be addressed in our community.”

Alsobrooks began her career as a domestic violence prosecutor, and said the recent killings of two three-year-olds, Knijah Bibb in Landover, Md. and Laila Miller in Fort Washington, Md. prompted her to act.

While most domestic abuse programs are designed to help the victims of such incidents, Alsobrooks said offenders need help, too.

“It is not enough to focus on one half of the problem,” she said. “We should go the offender and say call us if you need help.” She urged neighbors, family and friends, and anyone aware of domestic violence to take advantage of the “211” crisis hotline number established last year.

Alsobrooks said her office is also coordinating with agencies and faith communities to come up with a “very comprehensive approach” in providing those resources.

At the news conference, Alsobrooks said the county’s annual Crime Victims Walk will take place on Oct.18 and will focus on domestic violence; resources and counseling will be available. There is also a plan to hold a family unity conference in the future.

The Prince Georges County domestic violence press conference can be viewed here.