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Detective Sergeant Sun Cheoung

Domestic Violence/Elder Abuse Unit Special Victims Investigations Division, MCPD

spoke to at our Thursday, February 15, 2024, meeting.

by Walt Houser

Detective Sergeant Sun Cheoung provided comprehensive information on domestic violence and abuse, including its definition, statistics, types, common signs, and resources for victims. Here's a summary of the key points:

What is Domestic Violence?

Domestic violence is a pattern of abusive behavior used to gain or maintain power over an intimate partner. It can take various forms, including physical, sexual, emotional, economic, psychological, and technological abuse.

Montgomery County Statistics:

In 2022, there were 1,586 reported domestic violence incidents, with 269 felony cases and 1,317 misdemeanors. Approximately 150 domestic violence misdemeanors are prosecuted each year, and around 5,000 protective orders are served annually.

Victims of Domestic Violence:

Anyone can be a victim of domestic violence, regardless of race, age, sexual orientation, religion, gender, socioeconomic background, or education level. It can occur in opposite-sex and same-sex relationships, whether married, living together, dating, or sharing a child.

Types of Domestic Violence/Abuse:

Domestic violence can manifest in various forms, including physical violence, sexual violence, emotional abuse, economic abuse, psychological abuse, and technological abuse.

Common Signs of Abusive Behavior:

Victims should document instances of domestic violence by keeping a journal, noting dates, times, and descriptions of incidents, and seeking medical care if necessary. It's also essential to file a police report and obtain protective orders or criminal charges.

Police Response and Protective Orders:

When seeking help from the police, personal safety is the priority. The police may provide first aid for injuries, conduct interviews with the victim and aggressor, determine the primary aggressor, and make on-scene arrests if applicable. Protective orders can be obtained to refrain the respondent from committing certain acts against the petitioner.

You can file Peace/Protective Orders at the Maryland District Court Commissioner’s Office. In Montgomery County:
191 East Jefferson Street, Rockville, MD 20850 (Open 24/7)
8552 2nd Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20910 (8am – 12am)
Forms are also available at:

Resources for Victims:

Several resources are available for victims of domestic violence, including the Family Justice Center, Abused Persons Program, Crisis Center, and Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline. These resources offer crisis counseling, shelter, support, advocacy services, and emergency crisis evaluations.

Child Abuse and Neglect Hotline
1301 Piccard Drive, Rockville, MD 20850
(240) 777-3500

This reporting line takes calls and investigates reports of suspected child abuse and neglect to ensure the safety of children. Reports can come from community members, family, school personnel and others.  This hotline responds to calls about children living in Montgomery County. 

Crisis Center
1301 Piccard Drive, Rockville, MD 20850
(240) 777-4000

The Crisis Center Provides free crisis services 24 hours a day/ 365 days a year. Services are provided by telephone or in person at (no appointment is needed). The Mobile Crisis Team (MCT) provides on-scene emergency crisis evaluations for individuals who are experiencing a mental health crisis. Full crisis assessments and treatment referrals are provided for all types of crises, both psychiatric and situational. Four crisis beds are offered as an alternative to hospitalization for those who are uninsured or are insured within the public mental health system.

Filing Protective/Peace Orders and Criminal Charges:

Victims can file protective or peace orders at the Maryland District Court Commissioners Office, with forms available online. The process involves visiting designated locations in Montgomery County during specified hours.

These resources and information are vital for individuals affected by domestic violence to seek help, support, and protection from abuse.

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