Police report details of deadly shooting; Emerge! offers help fo - Tucson News Now

Police report details of deadly shooting; Emerge! offers help for domestic abuse victims

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

Details are emerging from Tucson police reports on the deadly shooting at a busy restaurant at La Encantada mall.

That's where a Tucson fire captain, Fred Bair, killed a man, shot his ex-wife, then killed himself on April 14.

In the police reports, the ex-wife said she was concerned about Bair after their divorce. 

"She felt he had kind of stalked her due to some information that he confronted her about reference being on Match.com (a dating website)," according to the report.

She told police the two had been divorced since September 2016 after 25 years of marriage and after Bair had an affair.

She also told detectives "she was feeling a bit afraid of him because of the way he (Bair) was acting lately, being obsessive and possessive."

She told police that a couple of months before the shooting,  Bair had made threats, saying, "If she was ever with anybody he would have to kill the person she was with."

There were 107 domestic violence deaths in Arizona in 2015, according to the Arizona Coalition to End Domestic and Sexual Abuse. Twenty-five of them were in Pima County.

The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence reported that on a typical day, domestic violence hotlines across the country receive about 21,000 calls. That's an average of almost 15 calls every minute.

One in three women and one in four men in the United States have experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner.

In cases of continuing domestic violence, victims can feel helpless when dealing with the abuser.

We went to the Emerge! Center Against Domestic Abuse here in Tucson to get some answers for anyone who needs them.

"Stalking is a dangerous behavior and can also be a crime, and should never be taken lightly," Emerge! CEO Ed Mercurio-Sakwa said. "Stalking is a behavior that can escalate to more serious and dangerous acts. In fact, being stalked may indicate that someone is at risk of being seriously harmed or even killed.

"If you or someone you know is experiencing abuse, being threatened or fears for their physical safety, it is important to know that is it OK to ask for help and it is OK to offer help."

Asked about restraining orders and calling police, Mercurio-Sakwa said, "Every individual must evaluate what they feel is safest to do in their situation. Emerge! offers support with identifying options, safety planning and accessing resources such as orders of protection, making police reports and other lay legal support." 

He said Emerge! can help with any of these issues.

The Emerge! 24-hour, bilingual hotline is 520-795-4266.

There is "safety planning assistance, domestic abuse education, access to emergency shelter and help making an appointment for services at Emerge! or connections with other community resources.  It is important that a person trust their instincts and feelings about what is happening in their relationship," Mercurio-Sakwa said. 

We asked Mercurio-Sakwa how often these steps actually are effective and protective

"While it is important that a victim have access to safe options, support, information, and education, there is no true way to predict what the abusive partner will do," he said.  "We can talk about risk assessment and risk reduction, but ultimately, those individuals who are making choices to hurt, abuse and threaten their loved ones must be willing to receive help in changing their behavior. And we, as a community, must be willing to provide that help while holding them accountable for their abusive choices."

Emerge! 24-hour, bilingual hotline number: 520-795-4266

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