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Marshall County honors Domestic Violence Awareness Month

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month and the Marshall County Attorney’s Office remains committed to prosecuting those violent crimes and serving survivors of domestic violence.

The Marshall County Attorney’s Office prosecutes all domestic assault crimes that occur in Marshall County. Two assistant Marshall County Attorneys focus exclusively on prosecuting domestic violence and sexual assault crimes.

Sarah Tupper prosecutes the felony domestic violence cases, as well as sexual assault and stalking crimes. Tupper is a graduate of the University of Iowa College of Law, has worked as a prosecutor for 17 years and has been with the Marshall County Attorney’s Office for seven years. She has focused on the prosecution of violent domestic abuse crimes for most of her career.

“Working to achieve justice in domestic violence and sexual assault cases is incredibly rewarding; I hope to help not only the victims of those crimes and all those impacted by domestic violence and sexual assault, but also to assist in making our community safer,” Tupper said.

Alexis Grove recently was hired as an assistant Marshall County Attorney and prosecutes all misdemeanor domestic violence crimes that occur in Marshall County. Grove, a Drake University Law School graduate, was Editor in Chief of the Drake Law Review, clerked for a year for Iowa Supreme Court Justice Edward Mansfield and worked as an attorney at the Des Moines law firm of Whitfield & Eddy before joining the Marshall County Attorney’s Office.

“Although I recently transitioned into my role as a domestic violence prosecutor, I am excited to help the community in this way. This job gives me the opportunity to advocate for justice in a very tangible way and use our legal system to help those in need,” Grove said.

The County Attorney’s Office also employs two victim witness coordinators who work with survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and other violent crimes. Yeimi Sanchez and Emma Michels have been with the office for a short period of time, but bring ample experience from their previous employment.

Sanchez previously worked with Assault Care Center Extending Shelter and Support as their Domestic Abuse Diversity Outreach Coordinator and then as their Homicide/Violent Crime Advocate. Sanchez is bilingual, which aids the County Attorney’s Office immensely in reaching out to Spanish speaking victims in the community and serving their needs.

“I do this work because every crime victim deserves to have support during a difficult and often confusing time in their life,” Sanchez said. “I am excited to work at the County Attorney’s Office because I get the opportunity to support victims in our community in a new way.”

Michels was employed by Child Abuse Prevention Services as a family support worker prior to joining the Marshall County Attorney’s Office. Michels also is drawn to this work by the opportunities it provides to serve others.

“My heart really has always been for people and helping them work through the harder parts of life and celebrating with them in the good parts,” she said.

Michels looks forward to using the skills she honed at CAPS in her new position.

“I have loved working with the families in the Marshalltown community over the last seven years and am excited to continue that work with the Marshall County Attorney’s Office,” Michels said.

Marshall County Attorney Jennifer Miller, also a Drake University Law School graduate, has served as county attorney for 17 years. Throughout her tenure as county attorney, Miller has prioritized the prosecution of violent crimes and has been committed to ensuring the safety of the Marshall County community.

Miller’s decision to employ two victim witness coordinators and two domestic violence prosecutors illustrates her commitment to prosecuting those crimes.

“The prosecution of domestic violence cases is among the highest priorities of the Marshall County Attorney’s Office. The addition of a second victim witness coordinator and a dedicated domestic violence prosecutor will help provide an effective, coordinated response to victims in Marshall County,” Miller said. “Our office will continue to work together with our local law enforcement partners toward the common goal of ensuring the safety of victims and holding offenders accountable and responsible for their behavior.”

During Domestic Violence Awareness Month, the Marshall County Attorney’s Office reminds the community that they are dedicated to serving survivors of domestic violence crimes, to achieving justice for the victims and their families and to holding offenders accountable. With four employees assigned to handle domestic violence cases, the office intends to devote more resources to community outreach and wants victims of domestic violence to know that they can contact the Marshall County Attorney’s Office for assistance.