NEOSHO, MO.--- Newton County Chief Deputy Chris Jennings says recent cases of brutality towards women have taken their toll on the sheriff's office.
"It's difficult especially for us. We weren't able to be there to prevent it and our entire nature of our being goes towards preventing people from getting hurt, so it's very difficult for us," states Chris Jennings, Newton County Chief Deputy.
That is why he wants women to keep in mind a few easy steps, which could save their lives.
"Be aware of your surroundings. Be aware of who you are with, who you are talking with. If it's someone you don't know then don't meet them privately," states Jennings.
Jennings says a weapon, even something as simple as car keys, can make a big difference.
"My personal belief is that a weapon is a good idea, a defense weapon. Whether it be a can of mace or if a person goes through a conceal-carry class and carries a gun. Most law enforcement I think has no problem with that," states Jennings.
The sheriff's office has had problems in the past with women waiting days, even months, to report an attack, because they fear the attacker will seek revenge.
"Please report the incident to law enforcement. If it's not reported for several days, there is evidence lost. It is harder to get a case in front of a jury that the victim was possibly hesitant to report or waited a time period," says Jennings.
Jennings says the amount of evidence collected could make a difference in how much time the victim serves behind bars.
"Anywhere from a short time to life. It depends on the circumstances. It depends on the weapon that might have been used. It depends also on the amount of physical damage done to the victim," states Jennings.
Jennings says in most cases the victim already knows the attacker before the assault or kidnapping. He believes you should always distance yourself from anybody you fear is capable of being violent.