Deadly domestic violence: Murder victim’s family speaks out

(Left: Sheneice Sumpter. Right: Alicia Trotter)

Standing in front of an abandoned home on Bay Road, Sheneice Sumpter’s sisters sent a strong message to domestic violence victims Wednesday---speak up.

“If a man is beating on you, putting his hands on you, yelling at you, he’s not worth it….please leave him,” said Miracle Meggs, Sumpter’s sisters.

The two sisters met in front of the large empty home on Hollinger’s Island. It was in that driveway where police found 27-year-old Sheneice Sumpter’s body Tuesday. Authorities said she had been shot in the head. Her boyfriend Peter Gales was arrested and charged with murder; family members said he was abusing her.

“I know she was unhappy in her relationship,” said Myosha Nelson, Sumpter’s sister.

Statistics show an average of three women are killed every day in the US by their husbands or boyfriends. Advocates against abuse say relationships often turn deadly when the woman tries to leave. Miracle Meggs said her sister had plans to move to Jacksonville.

“I feel like I could’ve helped my sister, but, she’s in a better place, it doesn’t seem real,” Meggs said.

Sumpter is just another victim of deadly domestic violence in Mobile. In April, 26-year-old Alicia Trotter was shot and killed in a murder-suicide. Police say her boyfriend Danny Cobb shot and killed her and dumped her body on the interstate. After a brief chase with police, he turned the gun on himself. Cobb’s family said she had recently filed a restraining order against him.

“I was in a similar situation, but, I was able to get out of it,” said Kiati Williams.

Kiati Williams said she was in an abusive relationship for years. On Saturday May 20, she’s hosting a domestic violence event at municipal park at 3PM called “Saving Our Sisters”. She’s encouraging people to share their stories and asking others to listen. The event has been going on for years now and she said workers with the Penelope House will be there to help.

“You want somebody to actually listen to you and actually help you,” she said, “all of this is just so sad”.

Sheneice Sumpter was set to turn 28 this month and leaves behind a nine-year-old son.. Her family is planning a candlelight vigil in her honor. It will be held at the Texas Street Recreation Center in Mobile next Tuesday at 6PM. People are encouraged to bring a candle and wear emerald in her honor.

Sumpter’s funeral services are set for Saturday, May 20 at Mount Sinai Baptist Church in Mobile at 12PM.

If you need help, please call the Penelope House hotline at 251-342-8994.