LAREDO, TX (KGNS) - It's a shooting that rocked a north Laredo community to its core and left a family fearing for their lives, but what lead to it is something all too familiar to many across the country.
"The majority of cases of domestic violence are against women,” said Sister Rosemary Welsh, executive director of Casa de Misericordia. “You've got a good gut sense. You know when something just isn't right, and when people begin to take away your ability to make decisions you need to reach out for help."
The police report about the shooting on Knoll Avenue alleges that Cesar Terrazas's ex-girlfriend, who police call "Martha," was reportedly in an abusive relationship that ended seven months ago.
She said it was issues like anger, jealousy, and possessiveness that put an end to their two and a half year relationship.
In the days leading up to the shooting, Cesar had been sending Martha several threatening messages like if she was ready to see her last days, and if he couldn't have her, no one else could. She was concerned but didn't want to cause any more damage, so she didn't report the threats.
"When people get to be very, telling you what to do, wear, who you can talk to, who you can't talk to, how you're supposed to dress, texting you multiple times with threats, one of the other ones is ‘If you leave me, I'm going to kill myself,' there's all sorts of signs."
Sister Rosemary says fear can be too much for a survivor to want to speak out against their abuser.
“The most dangerous time for a person in an abusive situation is when they finally decide to reach out for help. Because the abuser says, I lost control over the situation so I'm going to maybe do more harm to that person."
"Martha's" decision to not respond to Cesar allegedly lead to rage, losing control, and put his finger on the trigger.
A traumatic situation that Sister Rosemary says you can one day overcome.
"I think that there is a life after domestic violence. There is a way, reach out for help, know first of all that this is not your fault. You have done absolutely nothing to deserve this and you deserve to live a life free of fear and free of abuse."
The scars from the incident may heal, but the emotional pain will always take a toll.
If you or someone you know is in a domestic violence situation, Casa de Misericordia is always available to listen or assist.
For more information, you can call them at 712-9591.