Domestic violence victim says protection orders don’t do enough

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A domestic violence victim says she fears for her life and doesn't have trust in Memphis Police to protect her when she needs them.

She has a no-contact order against her ex-boyfriend after she said he abused her for two years.

“There are holes in the walls here and he burned the walls it looks like.”

Melody Jacobs showed us damage she believes her ex-boyfriend left behind.

“Out here is where he burned my stuff.”

She’s now left with cut up clothes, food left out, a broken window and a destroyed utility box.

Priceless items are also missing.

“I had all the things my children had made me over the years and they’re all gone. I mean, he took it all.”

Jacobs hadn’t been in the home she shared with her ex-boyfriend for about three months when she took us there.

She left the abusive relationship in January and got a no contact order.

“He had told me time and time again he’d kill me if I did any of this, so I really did I was scared to death and that’s how I feel still.”

The hospital nurse started dating him two years ago.

Although it started off great, it didn’t last long.

“The first physical abuse was he head butted me, but it happened in a way where I thought it was an accident. He kind of came towards me and leaned up.”

She said the following months involved him cracking her ribs, biting her and beating her.

“It’s the worst feeling I’ve ever had in my life to feel like I don’t know what to do.”

She thought the order of protection would do what its name suggests: Protect her.

The lease is under her name, so they agreed in court her ex could either take it over or move out within 30 days.

Jacobs said she was told several times Memphis police would go with her when she wanted to get her belongings from the house.

“I worried to death he was out there fixing to shoot me.”

She said she tried several times to arrange for officers to go with her, but she says they always gave her different reasons why they couldn’t actually follow her to the house to get her items.

Jacobs said some of those reasons were her ex had the right to be there, she should just move, police don’t do evictions and they couldn’t enforce the court order.

“I didn’t get ugly, but I was like, 'What?' This is why women don’t leave terrible situations. They just don’t.”

To make matters worse, she says her ex is now staying with a relative down the street.

Anytime she leaves her home, she has to pass him - putting her in violation of the order.

Police said if she wants him living nearby addressed, she needs to go back to court, which is also frustrating her.

“It really almost, it took my breath. I mean I was just like, 'Man, this is not fair.' I felt like the victim all over again.”

After we contacted police about the case, a prosecuting attorney and police officer met with Jacobs.

They filed a vandalism and theft report, and issued a warrant for his arrest for domestic violence.

Records show the warrant is still active for her ex-boyfriend’s arrest and he hasn’t turned himself in at this time.

We asked Memphis police why officers didn’t help Jacobs earlier on, but they stopped responding to our requests for this story.