Breaking News
More () »

Indianapolis survivor of domestic abuse calls for change

Niesha Neal is speaking out about change necessary to protect victims from abusers.

INDIANAPOLIS — “Silence is violence,” said 21-year domestic violence survivor Niesha Neal.

She's not staying silent. 

Neal is speaking out on social media about the change she says needs to happen to better protect people from being killed by their abuser. 

“I am tired of seeing so many lose their lives because ‘the system failed them,’” Neal wrote after the recent murder of 32-year-old Krystal Walton. 

Police say Walton was shot by the father of her young son outside a west Indianapolis day care center.

RELATED: Man charged with murder in killing of woman at Indianapolis day care

According to court records, when she was killed, Walton had a no contact order in place against her alleged assailant and there were two warrants out for his arrest. One of those warrants was for violating the no-contact order just a month earlier. 

“I remember 21-plus years ago, somebody told me a protective order is just a piece of paper,” Neal recalled.

It's a painful lesson Neal learned when, she said, the father of her two children broke into her home, despite a protective order she had against him. Neal was stabbed 13 times. 

RELATED: Indianapolis couple plans 14th memorial walk in honor of great-nephew

“The last place he stabbed me was here on the side of my stomach,” said Neal, pointing to her side. 

“And I heard this voice say, ‘Lay there, play dead, don’t move,’ and that’s what I did,” said Neal, who now works for Domestic Violence Network, an advocacy nonprofit.

Neal said there needs to be harsher punishments handed down in domestic violence convictions and in cases when no contact orders are violated. 

“If it was happening, then like in Krystal’s case, he wouldn’t be out. He wouldn’t have been out that Friday that everything happened. Why? Because he violated the no-contact order,” Neal said.

Neal said she will keep speaking out, both through her work and social media posts. 

“Change the system," said Neal. "It’s time to hold abusers accountable.”

What other people are reading: 

Before You Leave, Check This Out