Bell Atlantic gives county phones for abuse victims Cellular units dial only 911 to summon police quickly

August 28, 1998|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

To increase the safety of domestic violence victims, Howard County officials will begin giving them free cellular phones to call police in emergencies.

Bell Atlantic Mobile donated 25 phones yesterday to the Howard County State's Attorney's Office. That office and the Domestic Violence Center of Howard County will distribute the phones, which can dial only 911.

"They can carry this with them at all times," said Judy Clancy, the center's executive director. "They can press one button and the police will be on their way. [The phones] will make a big difference in these women's lives."

Bell Atlantic has donated 50 phones to agencies in Montgomery and Princes George's counties during the past two years.

A Bell Atlantic spokeswoman said the phones have helped at least one man call police when his enraged ex-wife confronted him with a shotgun.

The service and phones will be provided to Howard County for three years, the spokeswoman said.

Pub Date: 8/28/98

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