By Mindy Aguon

Guam – If a victim is strangled one time, studies show that she is 700-800 times more likely to become a victim of homicide at the hands of that same assailant. Gael Strack is CEO of the National Family Justice Center Alliance and says strangulation is often an overlooked crime because of the lack of visibility of injuries but she warns that it causes brain damage and in many cases, death in less than four minutes. She and Fresno Police Department retired detective Michael Agnew are on Guam conducting a two strangulation training course to members of the Guam Police Department.

“By receiving this training police officers are going to show how to investigate and document these strangulation cases,” she told KUAM News. “They are going to be able to do a better job in their police reports and in their documentation and prosecutors will be able to have more evidence to prove to the judge or to a jury that an actual strangulation occurred.”

Strack says 32 states have passed felony strangulation laws and she hopes to equip the island with what is needed to have similar legislation passed here. She stresses that it’s important that victims understand that each time they are strangled, they receive brain damage.

The training is completely federally-funded.