'Heartbroken' friend speaks out about domestic violence - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

'Heartbroken' friend speaks out about domestic violence

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Shawna Wyatt (Right) and Tamara Bauman (Left). Wyatt was found dead in the Downtowner Motel last week. Her boyfriend, Michael Baesman was arrested for her murder. (PHOTO: Tamara  Bauman) Shawna Wyatt (Right) and Tamara Bauman (Left). Wyatt was found dead in the Downtowner Motel last week. Her boyfriend, Michael Baesman was arrested for her murder. (PHOTO: Tamara Bauman)
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"She always was, and will always be my best friend," said Tamara Bauman.

According to court documents, Spokane Police say Tamara's best and long-time friend, Shawna Wyatt, was strangled and killed by her boyfriend last week at the Downtowner Motel in downtown Spokane after they had been fighting.

"There's no words to express how heartbroken I am that she's no longer on earth," said Tamara. "I know spiritually she's right next to me but that only provides me small comfort."

Tamara did not want to comment specifically about this case, as the investigation is still ongoing, but right now she is getting her Masters Degree in Public Administration, concentrating in domestic violence organizational management and policy, and she had advice for people currently in an abusive relationship.

"You do not have to become another statistic," she said. "Please do not let fear rule your life...it doesn't have to end in death."

And, she also had advice for people who have friends or family members in a domestic violence relationship.

Tamara said traits like excessive jealousy, constant criticism, and cutting off household or financial resources are often signs that someone may be an abusive partner. And, she said isolation and absenteeism are common traits found in victims of domestic violence.

She encouraged the entire community to do what she called a "self-evaluation" so that more people are willing and prepared to help friends and family members who find themselves in an abusive relationship.

"If you're talking to someone, concerned about a friend who might be experiencing domestic violence, but it doesn't seem like you're reaching them, the only thing you can do is be a broken record," she said. "Be consistent as a friend."

She also encouraged people to make themselves aware of local resources and actively work to combat this issue.

"For anyone who hears domestic violence in a neighboring room or house, do not be a silent bystander. If you just call 911, that's the huge takeaway."

Tamara said she wants the Spokane community to remember her friend as a trusting and caring mom, the type of friend that would bend over backwards to help others, a best friend to many, and, most simply, a woman with a beautiful spirit and soul.

"She gave so much, and she deserved so much better," said Tamara of her friend.

This is a list of local domestic violence resources right here in Spokane:

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