Advocacy group hopes Oden charge leads to domestic violence awareness

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INDIANAPOLIS – A domestic violence victims advocacy group in Central Indiana is hoping the felony battery charge facing NBA player Greg Oden sends a strong message to abusers and gives hope to victims of domestic violence.

Oden is accused of punching his ex-girlfriend during an argument. He was arrested last Thursday.

Charges against him include felony battery resulting in serious bodily injury and two misdemeanors: domestic battery and battery resulting in serious bodily injury.

During his hearing, Wednesday, FOX59 learned that Oden remains free on bond and faces an Oct. 22 trial. He still has to wear a GPS monitoring device given to him last week, although a judge will decide if he’ll have to continue wearing it within the next month.

“It’s a serious crime,” said Catherine O’Connor, President of The Julian Center in Indianapolis.

According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence, one in every four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime. Domestic violence is also the most under reported crime in the country, according to The Julian Center.

O’Connor believes its cases like Oden’s that help shine the light on this huge problem.

“To see that it is taken seriously in the community and see that it's something that we all are working together to try to stop it when it happens and prevent it from happening again."

O’Connor also hopes to reach out to relatives, friends, neighbors, and co-workers who may notice the signs of domestic violence. Many times they can stop violence before it happens if they intervene.

If you or anyone you know is facing a domestic violence situation, or you’d like to learn more about the signs of domestic violence, click here.