14-year-old girl shoots abusive father; Mother calls her a "hero"

14-year-old girl shoots abusive father; Mother calls her a "hero"

Bresha Meadows,14, has been in jail for over 4 months. She's currently awaiting trial for killing her abusive father.

Bresha Meadows, a 14-year-old that was accused of killing her father will be spending her holidays in jail, according to reports.

Her mom called her a "hero"

Brandi Meadows, Bresha's mom, said "She is my hero, I wasn’t strong enough to get out and she helped us all." Her daughter is now located in a juvenile detention center. She has been charged with aggravated murder for shooting her father.

Brandi has also filed a civil domestic violence protection order against Jonathan, because she feared for her life.

She writes, “In the 17 years of our marriage, he has cut me, broke my ribs, fingers, the blood vessels in my hand, my mouth, blackened my eyes. I believe my nose was broken. If he finds us, I am 100 percent sure he will kill me and the children … My life is like living in a box he created for me, and if I stepped out of that box, he’s there to put me back in that box.”

However, the case was dismissed and the couple reconciled.

Their family members have also come out and said that Bresha's father, Jonathan Meadows, was physically and verbally abusive, and was also very controlling of his wife's every move.

However, Jonathan's relatives claim that he wasn't abusive at all to his family.

She shot her father with the gun he used to threaten them

Now 15, Bresha has spent 6 months locked up, missing a large portion of the school year. She was supposed to have her hearing on November 22nd, but it was moved to January 20.

The #FreeBresha campaign, an organization trying to raise awareness about her as well as about domestic violence have released the following statement.

“As of today, Bresha has already spent 117 days in jail. By the time January 20th comes around she will have spent over 175 days in a cell. This is truly unconscionable and we are furious. Bresha should NOT have to spend Thanksgiving and Christmas away from her family in a jail cell. Bresha should be home for the holidays … Rather than support Bresha with resources to recover from her experience of extensive violence, prosecutors continue to punish and incarcerate her for defending her life.”

According to Bresha's lawyer, Ian Friedman, "She watched her father punch, kick, and stomp her mother. That, in and of itself, is traumatic. The kids witnessed their father’s drinking and drug use lead to escalated beatings that would, at times, end with their mother being unconscious."

The gun that Bresha used to shoot her father was the same gun that he used to threaten them. Bresha is currently facing life in prison and is waiting for her hearing on January.

Go to the next page to learn more about knowing the signs of abuse.

What should you do if you suspect abuse?

Making sure that your children are safe should always be a number one priority. That's why even if you haven't confirmed that a child is suffering from abuse, you should already take some steps.

  1. Talk to them about it. The first step you should take would be to talk to the child directly, since that's the best way to confirm if a child is indeed suffering from abuse.
  2. Keep a diary. You could also write a diary detailing your observations regarding the child's behavior, and any changes that you notice. It can also help you spot different patterns of behavior.
  3. Try talking to their teacher or someone close to them. You can also talk to their teacher or someone close to them to ask if they also notice something different regarding the child's behavior or attitude. That way you can confirm if your suspicions are true.
  4. Don't be afraid to intervene. Contacting someone or alerting authorities to a possible case of child abuse does save lives. It's better to report it quickly instead of waiting for the situation to escalate and for the child to become worse.

Always remember, any little thing you do to help out abused children can make a big difference in their lives.

Sources: huffingtonpost.com, slate.com

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