New study says Tennessee ranked #9 for rate of murder of women by men

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Tennessee has the ninth highest homicide rate in the country when it comes to women who are murdered by men. This is the seventh year the Volunteer State has been in the top 10.

The staggering figures were released as part of a study by the Violence Policy Center.

"She was all about her baby and work. That's all she did. So for her life just to get taken like that for domestics that's crazy," said Champagne Cathey.

Just last week, Cathey described her friend after the death of 23-year-old Darneshah Qualls. Police said she was killed in the Raleigh neighborhood she grew up in.

Officers said it was a case of domestic violence and arrested her boyfriend for her murder.

Women who live in the neighborhood told us cases like these are the last things they want their daughters to see.

"It's scary cause I have a 19-year-old, and it's scary for her as far as thinking that something like that could happen to her," said neighbor Antoinette Spencer.

"When women are killed by a man 93% of the time it's going to be an intimate partner or former intimate partner, " explained Jordan Howard with the Family Safety Center.

Howard said while being on the national list at number 9 is disappointing, she said she could remember a time when Tennessee was ranked even worse.

"I'm excited overall that the picture is getting better, but I know locally we still have quite a bit going on," she said.

The study was released a few weeks before October, Domestic Violence Awareness month. Howard said the goal is to reach legislators so they will make a change.

"Enforcing the taking away of firearms in every single situation, sometimes the offender will lie, and there's no real follow-up in making sure firearms are seized," she said.

Howard also hopes lawmakers will put rules into place that hold repeat offenders accountable, something she believes could make a big difference for victims.

This past July, Memphis city officials implemented a new punishment for domestic violence offenders. Now people accused of violent domestic attacks could have to wear ankle monitors if their crime is violent in nature.

Investigators will get real-time updates on the whereabouts of offenders. An alert will go off if perpetrators try to go near their victims.

The Memphis Police Department said domestic violence is a growing problem in the city, and this is a way of combating it.