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'If you leave me, I’m going to hurt you' | Family says domestic violence could've led to double homicide in Jennings

"My mom didn’t deserve to die like that and my little sister didn’t deserve to die like that. I didn’t think this man would go as far as doing this to my mom."

JENNINGS, Mo. — Bethaney Tyler is the oldest daughter of Bernadette 'Chasity' Cooper.

Tyler said her mom was her best friend and her 6-year-old sister Doryan was mom's twin.

"They acted just alike always smiling, dancing, and happy," Tyler said.

But Tyler is now in disbelief that these two filled with so much life have died.

Around 1:30 Saturday, police responded to a shooting on Shannon Fox Circle in Jennings.

Family members say a confrontation started, when Cooper's boyfriend, Joseph Jones was angry the home wasn't tidy.

Family members believe Cooper was killed and say Jones then allegedly aimed at her three children. 

"My mom didn’t deserve to die like that and my little sister didn’t deserve to die like that. I didn’t think this man would go as far as doing this to my mom," Tyler said.

RELATED: Jennings mother and 6-year-old killed in quadruple shooting

"I knew they got into it, but what couple don’t get into it," she added. 

Tyler learned from her mom's co-workers, there were threats made. 

Threats like, "If you leave me, I’m going to hurt you."

Jessica Woolbright, the Executive director of St. Martha's Hall, explains many victims stay for different reasons.

But what's common among these situations?

Abusers thrive on power and control.

With COVID-19, isolation is empowering abusers even more.

RELATED: 'They need help' | Domestic violence cases and calls spike during coronavirus pandemic

"When she leaves that relationship, she is attempting to take back that power and control, so he has to increase the tactics that he is using to maintain that power and control over her," Woolbright said.

According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, on average, it takes a victim seven times to leave before staying away for good.

But as the abuser senses that they’re losing power, they will often act in dangerous ways to regain control over their victim.

"It would not be typical that the first incident of violence was a double murder with two other children being shot. Typically we see the violence increase with time. We see the use of physical violence escalate when other tactics stop working or the abuser feels out of control," Woolbright said.

As Tyler tries to take this all in, her focus shifts to taking her little sisters, who survived, under her wing.

And she gives others this message, "I say get out. I didn’t think my mom would be gone. You just never know, call or talk to someone."

Jones is being held on multiple charges, including two counts of first-degree murder. He's being held on a $1 million cash bond, with no 10% bond option. 

For anyone needing help, there are services, resources, and people wanting to help.

Woolbright said the most successful survivors are those with a plan.

Agencies have trained advocates who can help you create a safety plan that fits best for your situation. 

"There are people willing and able to help and we will be with you on that journey," Woolbright said.

As October marks Domestic Violence Awareness Month, advocates urge you to learn more. Even by calling an agency, you can find out what can help your situation.

If you need any resources, you can call Safe Connections hotline at 314-531-2003.              

If you'd like to help out Tyler's family for funeral costs, here's the GoFundMe link. 

Tyler says to only donate to the Justin Brooks page, as other accounts have been set up but not approved by the family.


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