Crime & Courts

Man jailed for allegedly choking girlfriend. Cops urge other DV victims to seek help

How to tell if you’re in an abusive relationship

Here are some signs you may be in an abusive relationship, according to the National Domestic Violence Hotline.
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Here are some signs you may be in an abusive relationship, according to the National Domestic Violence Hotline.

Wichita police say a man tried to kill his girlfriend early Wednesday — and the department in mentioning the case encouraged domestic violence victims to seek help by calling any of a number of local and national hotlines or confiding in a trusted friend or family member.

Officer Charley Davidson during a Thursday morning news briefing urged anyone suffering from violence at the hands of a family or intimate partner to contact:

“If you know of someone or you yourself are involved in a dangerous relationship, there are resources available. Please reach out to somebody,” Davidson said after discussing one of the city’s latest DV cases that resulted in a Wichita man’s arrest for attempted murder.

Davidson said police on Wednesday arrested 42-year-old Ryan Shane Risley after he reportedly choked and harmed his 34-year-old girlfriend. Officers learned of the alleged attack at about 9 a.m. Wednesday, when they were called to a Wichita hospital to check out an assault report.

The girlfriend, who was being treated at the hospital, told police that her boyfriend had strangled and battered her earlier, Davidson said.

Police arrested Risley at his home in the 1800 block of West 53rd Street North. He is being held in the Sedgwick County Jail on suspicion of committing attempted first-degree murder, aggravated domestic battery and criminal threat, online inmate records show — although he has yet to be formally charged with any crime.

Davidson said Thursday that the investigation into the case continues and will be presented to the Sedgwick County District Attorney’s Office” for possible prosecution.

Kansas authorities received 22,708 reports about domestic violence and made about half as many related arrests in 2017 — the latest year of statistics available in a yearly KBI report that gives details about domestic violence, stalking and sexual assault cases in Kansas. That year, a little more than a fifth of the state’s 176 homicides were connected to domestic violence, the report says. Twenty of the victims killed were women and 18 were men.

Locally, domestic violence now accounts for around half of the aggravated assaults reported to Wichita police, the department has said. In 2017, WPD made arrests in 41.4% of the 6,122 DV cases reported, according to the KBI report. County wide the arrest rate was 42.8%.

Whether someone has asked you for help or you sense someone is in distress, here are some general guidelines to help support possible victims of abuse, be it physical, emotional, sexual, psychological or financial.

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Amy Renee Leiker has been reporting for The Wichita Eagle since 2010. She covers crime, courts and breaking news and updates the newspaper’s online databases. You can reach her at 316-268-6644. She’s an avid reader and mom of three in her non-work time.