'I don't want her to be another statistic' Police officer honoured for domestic abuse work after mum murdered by partner

  • Watch the report by Ian Lang

When Michael Taggart was just 15 years old, his mother was killed following years and years of domestic abuse at the hands of her partner.

Donna Crist was murdered by Michael's abusive stepfather Derek Evans in 1997.

Donna Crist was killed by her abusive partner in 1997 Credit: Michael Taggart

It was Michael's tragic past that led him into a career which would see him supporting other victims of domestic abuse in his role as an officer with North Wales Police.

"I don't want my mum to be dead and forgotten - I'd like to think her name is helping others and move forward.

"Now she has gone, it is something I want to do to honour her name, so she's not just another statistic".

It is because of this work which has seen him awarded with an MBE for his services to victims of domestic abuse.

Michael said he was "truly thankful and humbled" to be appointed with the title.

There were 750,000 reports of domestic violence to police in the United Kingdom in the year ending March 2019.

On average the police in England and Wales receive over 100 calls relating to domestic abuse every hour, but Women's Aid highlight that domestic abuse statistics are often difficult to accurately quantify.

Michael said the award shows the importance of the work being done around the country to support people affected by domestic violence.

Several studies have linked major sporting events to an increase in reports of domestic violence and during the Euro 2020 tournament, Michael said victims should feel able to "reach out".

'Whilst we are all at home we can all enjoy the football together and we can all obviously get high in the spirit of it."

"But don't just sit there and worry about it. Reach out, speak to somebody because we are there and somebody can help."

Domestic abuse helplines and services:

  • Call, text, email or live chat via the Live Fear Free Helpline: 0808 80 10 800 / info@livefearfreehelpline.wales;

  • Welsh Women's Aid's Stand with Survivors Bystanders Toolkit provides information for anyone who might be concerned about a friend, family member, neighbour or colleague;

  • Contact Refuge online or via its National Domestic Abuse Helpline: 0808 2000 247;

  • Men’s Advice Line - a confidential helpline for male victims of domestic abuse: 0808 801 0327;

  • The National LGBT Domestic Abuse Helpline provides 'emotional and practical support for LGBT+ people': 0800 999 5428;

  • National Stalking Helpline - offers guidance on the law, how to report stalking, gathering evidence, staying safe and reducing the risk: 0808 802 0300;

  • Victim Support - free and confidential help to victims of crime, witnesses, their family and friends: 0808 1689 111;

  • Karma Nirvana - supports victims of honour crimes and forced marriages: 0800 5999 247;

  • Galop, an LGBT+ anti-violence charity: 0800 999 5428;

  • BAWSO (Black Association Women Step Out): 0800 7318 147;

  • RESPECT Helpline - if you are concerned about your behaviour towards your partner and want to stop, contact: 0808 8024 040.