Los Angeles—The region’s top prosecutors, District Attorney Jackie Lacey and City Attorney Mike Feuer, today launched the “Behind Closed Doors” public safety campaign imploring Angelenos to be alert and aware and to report suspected in-home crimes. Lacey and Feuer asserted that with the Safer At Home orders during the COVID-19 crisis there may be increased levels of in-home domestic, elder and child abuse.
"We in law enforcement are especially concerned right now with protecting the people who live, work and visit Los Angeles County from domestic violence, child abuse and elder abuse," Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey said. "It’s up to all of us to make sure that our family, friends, neighbors and colleagues get through this public health emergency without becoming a victim of crime."
"What goes on behind closed doors can remain invisible and sometimes be deadly." said Feuer. "I'm alarmed at what appears to be a dramatic decline in reporting of crimes against our kids, our seniors, and individuals in abusive relationships. We're launching our 'Behind Closed Doors' campaign, and partnering with our grocers and school district, to alert delivery personnel, home repair workers, neighbors, family and friends to immediately text or call 911 if you believe someone needs help."
"Los Angeles grocers are committed to doing their part in focusing much needed attention on the rise of domestic violence occurring during this pandemic," said Ron Fong, President & CEO, California Grocers Association. "We encourage every grocery shopper to keep this important contact information and notify law enforcement immediately if you witness any type of domestic violence."
The “Behind Closed Doors” campaign includes the California Grocers Association, which is distributing posters to grocery stores which include free hotlines, shelters and legal resources available to domestic violence victims. Often the grocery store is one of the few safe havens for victims who are now isolated at home with their abuser. Informing people that help and safe harbors are available is essential when many think they have no alternatives but to stay.
The Los Angeles Unified School District’s 63 Grab and Go Food Centers are also displaying this crucial information.
With restrictions on where we can go, what we can do, and less outside interaction, some people are more at-risk for abuse. Discovery of these crimes is more difficult because victims’ contact with others is greatly limited.
On March 13, District Attorney Lacey and City Attorney Feuer announced the creation of the Joint Coronavirus Task Force. With the partnership of the Los Angeles Department of Consumer and Business Affairs and the L.A. County Counsel, it is tackling price gouging – online and in brick and mortars – and the multiple COVID-related consumer scams. To date, the task force has received hundreds of complaints from the public. Find out more about this work and the "Behind Closed Doors" campaign at the City Attorney's COVID-19 webpage.