Woman in hiding after domestic violence alert system fails
A GOLD Coast woman is in hiding after learning through Facebook that her abusive ex-partner had been released early from jail.
The man - convicted of numerous criminal charges and who had physically attacked his ex-partner, smashed her belongings and made death threats from jail - was not expected to be granted parole until May next year.
But just seven weeks after being sentenced in March, he was released.
Despite a three-year permanent domestic violence order against the man and legal reforms introduced in March, Corrective Services failed to alert the woman.
Her family only found out after friends checked his status on Facebook.
A sister of the woman told the Bulletin: "It's bullshit. They (Corrective Services) didn't contact us to let us know. We rang them and tried to confirm it but they wouldn't give out any information.
"A friend (of ours) had looked up his Facebook page. They looked up his name just to see what was going on. He was out a week before we found out about it."
Parents of the frightened woman have installed security cameras at home and ensure their daughter does not leave the house "without someone looking over her shoulder".
The Bulletin had campaigned for the reforms after the shocking murder of Teresa Bradford by her ex-husband after his release from custody and slaying of Shelsea Schilling by the Lizard Man Bronson Ellery who was living just streets away.
In the latest case, a warrant was out for the man regarding drug offences, evading police, driving without a licence and multiple DV complaints.
He was arrested in November last year, moved to a jail north of the Coast where he attempted to phone his ex-girlfriend but she refused to answer.
"He made contact in prison while the DV was in place. He (then) made a life threatening phone call (about her) to his family. Police had to come to the house here because my sister's life was red flagged," the family member said.
"She has been offered to go into protection. She is never alone. We got her into trauma counselling. We have put security cameras up around the house. She's very depressed. She has so much potential. Mentally and physically, she's a long way getting back to herself."
Opposition Prevention of Domestic and Family Violence spokesperson Ros Bates said she was deeply concerned this was not an isolated case.
"We know that Labor voted against the parole alerts for domestic violence victims and it seems they are continuing to let victims down," she said.
"Victims and their families need to know when an offender is being released so they can take the necessary safe precautions."
The LNP maintains the law requires authorities to warn victims about a prisoner's release.
But a Queensland Corrective Services spokesperson said DV victims could now apply to the Eligible Persons Register where they would be updated about jail sentences for perpetrators.
"QCS is working with agencies such as police and victim support groups to inform victims of the changes to eligibility," the spokesperson said.
A Bulletin campaign, highlighting how shocking Coast DV murders could have been prevented, led to the LNP in March introducing its Private Members Bill.
A report in February revealed ex-partners were not being warned about the release from jail of domestic violence perpetrators due to a technology failure in the prison system.
The lack of data sharing between government departments was revealed in the final parole system review report by former solicitor-general Walter Sofronoff, QC,
The Government announced up to 243 additional parole and probation officers would be appointed in the next four years but it would take time to fix better information sharing between QCS, the Parole Board and police.