More work to be done

WOMEN'S Health Loddon Mallee executive officer Linda Beilharz has described Fiona Warzywoda's death as  "another failure of our system".

Ms Warzywoda, 33, of Melton West, was allegedly stabbed to death by her de-facto husband in the middle of a busy Sunshine shopping strip on Wednesday last week.

"When I say failure of the system I do mean culture and those in authority," Ms Beilharz said.

"We allow attitudes to women and attitudes to violence to exist to the extent that people don't question what they do, those perpetrators."

We allow attitudes to women and attitudes to violence to exist ... - Linda Beilharz

Relatives of Ms Warzywoda, a mother-of-four who had planned to return to Bendigo and start a new life, have accused Victoria's overwhelmed justice system of failing to protect their family.

She was allegedly stabbed to death with a fishing knife by her abusive de-facto husband Craig McDermott, just hours after taking out a family violence order.

McDermott, 38, handed himself in to police on Thursday morning after spending a day on the run.

McDermott, of Sunshine North, appeared in the Melbourne Magistrates Court later that night, charged with the murder and was remanded until August 7.

Police figures obtained by Fairfax Media also show there were 44 family violence-related homicides in 2012-13, claiming the lives of 28 females and 16 males. 

"If these were deaths occurring in other circumstances, we'd be right on it but because we've allowed domestic violence to occur behind the scenes, (behind) the front door of the home, people get away with being violent," Ms Beilharz said.

"We've had a different attitude and it's definitely time for that to change.

"But police need to be supported in that role, too, by the conviction of people in the community who say this is not good enough.

"We need that more broadly."

Data from Victoria Police reveals major flaws with enforcement of intervention orders, with 820 offenders, mostly men, breaching orders at least three times in the past financial year.

Data shows flaws with enforcement of intervention orders

Of these, 200 individuals violated orders more than five times and 15 committed more than 10 separate breaches in one year.

The number of ''threat to kill or injure'' offences has also soared in the past decade, making it one of the fastest-growing crimes in the state. Victoria Police crime statistics show 1559 threats to injure and 4893 threats to kill were reported in the 2012-13 financial year.

- with The Age

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