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Firearms and Domestic Violence - An Intersection that Challenges Safety and Pre-Suppositions

Level: Advanced
Runtime: 69 minutes
Recorded Date: August 26, 2019
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  • Historical Context
  • Federal Law
  • State Law
  • Full, Faith and Credit
  • Intersection of Mass Shootings and Domestic Violence
  • Legislation
  • Promising Practices
Runtime: 1 hour and 9 minutes
Recorded: August 26, 2019


There is an oft-espoused belief that guns make one safer, but statistics on domestic violence against women make clear that in this area, the exact opposite is true. A recent study concluded that household gun ownership doubles the risk of homicide. And a woman living with a gun in the home is three times more likely to be murdered than one with no gun in the home. Because of these horrific tolls on human life, as well as their more mundane economic effects, governments are looking for ways to reduce gun violence in domestic violence situations.

Our panel will explore these issues and what has been done to make sure perpetrators of domestic violence don’t have access to guns. Best practices across the country will be highlighted and discussed.

This program was recorded on August 26th, 2019.

Provided By

American Bar Association
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Angela Adkins Downes

Assistant Director - Experimental Education
UNT Dallas College of Law

Professor Downes serves as Assistant Director of Experiential Education at UNT Dallas College of Law, where she teaches classes in domestic violence and interpersonal violence issues. Professor Downes’ law career has focus on public service, policy, and legislative efforts to protect the public trust. After positions with the Collin and Dallas counties’ District Attorney’s offices, Professor Downes previously served as the Attorney for Court Programs at the national office of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), the largest nonprofit dedicated to drunk driving and impaired driving issues. She is a former Senior Attorney at the National District Attorneys Association in Alexandria, Virginia, where she focused on child abuse, domestic violence, human trafficking, victims’ rights, and elder abuse.

She is a frequent trainer on domestic violence cultural competency, implicit bias and diversity issues. Prof. Downes has provided training, policy expertise and technical assistance to non-profit agencies on the interpersonal violence issues of child abuse, child protection, domestic violence, human trafficking, and elder abuse. She is a recognized subject matter expert on interpersonal violence issues.

Professor Downes was appointed by the governor to serve on the Texas State Board of Examiners of Psychologists and was re-appointed in 2013. The Board is the regulatory and licensing agency for psychologists in the state. She also served as a member of the Texas Violent Gang Taskforce from 2001-2004. Professor Downes also serves as an associate municipal judge for the City of Glenn Heights,Texas.

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Wanda Lucibello

Associate Vice President
Safe Horizon - Crime Victim Assistance Program

Wanda Lucibello, Esq., worked at the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office since 1981. Before joining Safe Horizon, Wanda was the chief of the Special Victims Division that was comprised of the Domestic Violence Bureau, Victims Services Unit, and Elder Abuse Unit. In this role she managed and advised more than 100 professionals, including lawyers, paralegals and advocates.

Wanda’s extensive experience working with survivors enabled her to understand that victims needed more than just a criminal justice response. She was instrumental in the launch of the Brooklyn Family Justice Center in 2005; the development of the Brooklyn Early Victim Engagement (EVE) program; and the management of the Domestic Violence Homicide Prevention Initiative. In each of these efforts, Wanda has worked closely with Safe Horizon staff and other non-profit partners to promote effective, interdisciplinary responses to the needs of survivors, and she is widely known for her collaborative and victim-centered approach. Now she is part of leading the Crime Victim Assistance Program, which will bring these critical services to survivors of violence.

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Meredith McBride

Senior Associate
Butler Tibbetts, LLC

Meredith McBride is a trusted counselor, fierce litigator, and integral member of the Butler Tibbetts team. Meredith maintains a broad litigation practice, serving as a go-to resource for both individuals and businesses as they navigate disputes in and out of the courtroom. Focused on personal connection, she handles marital and family law matters, and also has extensive experience representing clients in the healthcare and managed care industries.

For marital and family clients, Meredith serves as a personal confidant, oftentimes transcending the role of legal advisor by carefully listening to and guiding clients through some of their most private and vulnerable moments in life. She handles all aspects of divorce and custody matters with discretion, sensitivity, and a deep understanding of how delicate these matters can be. Her practice covers pre-nuptial and post-nuptial agreements, separation agreements, parenting plans, trials, post-judgment litigation, and appeals.

On the healthcare side, Meredith provides counsel to hospitals, health systems, and physician groups in managed care litigation, payor disputes, regulatory compliance, and other matters. She has successfully pursued insurance companies for underpayment on claims for medical services rendered by providers, defended medical providers from audits and takeback claims from insurance carriers and state agencies, and advises clients on the intricacies of insurance and managed care law, including issues related to the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA), and the New York Emergency Medical Services and Surprise Bills Law. Additionally, she assists individual patients in obtaining proper payment and coverage for medical claims.

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