BUFFALO GROVE, Ill. — After sources confirmed to WGN the deaths of those five family members inside a Buffalo Grove home appear to be a murder-suicide, domestic violence advocates say it’s never too late to talk about resources.
At the home where five members of the Kisliak family and a pet were found dead, the crime scene tape is now down and all that remains is a memorial in honor of the lives lost.
Domestic violence advocates said it’s heartbreaking to know this could have been prevented.
“It’s really hard for us on the domestic violence frontlines to hear these stories because this tragedy was 100% avoidable,” President and CEO of Wings Program, Inc. Rebecca Darr said.
It’s a feeling of devastation shared with the Buffalo Grove community.
While authorities haven’t identified who they believe was responsible, they have confirmed it was a domestic-related incident.
“Domestic violence is preventable all year round, especially around the holidays, specifically if there are economic factors going on,” Darr said.
Amilia, the youngest member of the family found dead, was just four years old. Her sister Vivian was only six.
Court records show there were problems in the home.
The girls’ mother, Vera, had an active order of protection against her husband, Andrei.
While some may argue the order is just a piece of paper, Darr said it’s a necessary tool that’s worked for many but can’t suffice alone.
“Hence the need for advocacy, counseling, someone to talk to,” Darr said.
Darr encourages everyone to know the statewide domestic violence hotline and to know there are people there are ready to help.
They can connect you with resources and know exactly where to turn, for each individual situation, including legal resources.
“People think the best thing to do is to go stay with a family member and it actually is one of the most dangerous things to do,” Darr said. “You’re not alone, that there are many, many people who are here to help and it’s not your fault.”
Advocates said that message can’t be emphasized enough. The number for the Illinois Domestic Violence Hotline is 1-877-TO-END-DV.
People there are ready to help connect people to resources and have their finger on the shelters with beds available, etc. They can also help connect people to legal resources.
Darr said it’s incredibly important to come up with a safety plan, since the part of domestic violence where people try to flee or escape, is the most dangerous.