Stop the violence: 80,000 Cuyahoga County women are rape victims | 5 On Your Side Survival Guide

CLEVELAND - The statistics are startling. One in every seven Ohio women is a survivor of rape. Fifteen percent of women between the ages of 20-44 report being raped and of the 565,000 women living in Cuyahoga County, over 80,000 of them have been raped, according to the Cleveland Rape Crisis Center.   

If those numbers aren't staggering enough, State of Ohio crime reports reveal nearly 10,000 incidences of domestic violence in 2012. Of those Ohio Attorney General reports, nearly 1,000 were in the City of Cleveland, 575 in Lake County, 900 in Lorain County and a combined total of nearly 3,000 in Summit and Stark Counties.

To narrow the scope even further, violence against women dominates the headlines in northeast Ohio.

- July 2011, a jury convicted Anthony Sowell of killing 11 Cleveland women and burying them in his backyard.

- April of 2013, families of three women reported them missing. Police found their bodies but no suspect.

- May 2013, three women abducted as teens a decade ago escaped the home of Ariel Castro.

- In July, police arrested Michael Madison for kidnapping and killing three women in East Cleveland.

- And just last month, detectives solved two cases involving two missing women and arrested Elias Acevado for their deaths.

What is it going to take to break this cycle of violence? What can women do to protect themselves against anonymous attackers or partners in a relationship? The Cuyahoga County Executive's Office, in cooperation with the NAACP and the Cuyahoga County Sheriff's Office, rolled out a session of self-defense classes to help women  become the victims of violent crime.

Coming up tonight on NewsChannel5 at 11 in our continuing "5 On Your Side Survival Guide" series, NewsChannel5 anchor Danita Harris takes the self-defense course and learns firsthand what it takes to fend off an attacker.

Her experience and the tips that could save you or a loved one's life tonight on NewsChannel5 at 11.

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