'It's literally life or death': Local officials plead to get help if you need it

Cambria County District Attorney Kelly Callihan reiterated Tuesday that people who are in an abusive relationship should seek help immediately.

EBENSBURG — After three different homicides in the past month that left four women dead in two different counties, local officials are repeating their pleas: There is help out there.

Cambria County District Attorney Kelly Callihan, in a Tuesday interview with 6 News, said that there are resources in the county, and around the area, for people who need it.

"My message to women is: You might feel hopeless, like you have no other option but to be with a person who is abusing you, but if you look down deep and get back your self-worth, there is a lot of promise," Callihan said.

She also said that one thing people can look out for is if someone's significant other is isolating them from other people.

"The woman's whole world revolves only around the abuser," Callihan said. "They take them away from their family, their friends, their jobs."

On top of pleas by local officials, the state Legislature is considering a number of different bills that would, among other things, give more power to PFAs, or Protection From Abuse orders, which are similar in some ways to restraining orders.

  • SB 501: would force people with PFAs filed against them to turn in their firearms.
  • SB 196: would allow judges to order electronic monitoring on people with PFAs filed against them
  • SB 313: would allow a judge to order a phone company to allow someone to get off a cell phone plan they share with an accused abuser
  • SB 500: would allow abuse victims to have a law enforcement official accompany them to their home

People in Cambria and Somerset counties can contact the Women's Help Center in Johnstown for help.

The Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence also has a list of ways to get help here.

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