MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) -
It is here at a conference on domestic violence in downtown Montgomery where we found Tahiera Brown.
"I am a survivor," said Brown.
A survivor of an abusive relationship, so bad the man who hurt her and one of Brown's daughters spent 20 years in prison.
"I am on the other side. We want to help those who are hurting," said Brown.
The goal at the conference was to encourage candidates running for office to strengthen the laws dealing with domestic and sexual abuse.
For example, one idea.. require training for emergency personnel, even judges on what to look for in a domestic violence situation. In other words nip it in the bud before anyone goes through what Brown endured.
Brown says her ex-husband is out of jail today and she says he forced her to marry him at gunpoint.
"I am not fearful for me because my life is in God's hands. I've been through the battle. I am fearful for the next victim. Just because he is 70 years old doesn't mean he won't victimize again," said Brown.
A case in point; in 2008 the state recorded 34 domestic violence homicides. That number jumped to 40 last year. Alabama ranks third in the country for women murdered by men.
As to why this happens the reasons vary and sometimes the answers are not all that clear just as Brown is still trying to figure out why her ex had so much hate and rage.
"I can't speak for his heart," she said.
The domestic violence crisis 24-hour hotline number is 1-800-650-6522.