Florida Man Accused Of Killing Girlfriend In Front Of Her Kids
Woman beat to death in same town where recent domestic violence case made national headlines
A Florida man has been has been charged in the Wednesday killing of 28-year-old Rolanda Harrell in front of her three young children.
The Jacksonville woman was allegedly beaten to death by 32-year-old Kishon Birch, who authorities took into custody and charged with murder on Thursday morning.
Harrell’s two oldest children told police Birch was “slinging their mom around the kitchen and throwing her against the kitchen counters and stove,” reports News 4 Jax.
The children – ages 2, 5,and 7 – said their mom fell and blood came out of her mouth. Police said Birch tried to pick Harell up off the floor and then dropped her back on the floor, before he took off running.
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The children told police the argument started when Birch slapped their mom after she accused him of seeing another woman.
Channel 4 learned Birch was in prison from 2003-2008 after a conviction for armed robbery, but has no other arrests in Duval County. A paternity suit was filed against him last year by another woman.
Harrell’s death comes less than a week after a judge gave 20-years to domestic abuse victim, Marissa Alexander.
Alexander, a 31-year-old mother of three, used a gun in self-defense against her abusive husband, who was not harmed and was seen by prosecutors as the victim in the incident.
Despite documented history of domestic abuse against her, a judge and jury did not accept her argument for a “Stand Your Ground” defense.
In 2010, the same year Alexander was charged in the shooting incident, there were more than 113,000 reported incidences of the domestic violence, according to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. More than 200 of those incidents were related to murder or manslaughter.
This week, Congress debated the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act. Although it passed, House Democrats opposed the Republican version of the bill because it omits protections for LGBT, undocumented immigrant and American Indian victims of abuse.