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Sep 23, 2013 1:44 AM by Sam Salzwedel

Comedy show benefits domestic abuse victims

TUCSON - More than 900 people went to a comedy benefit show for Emerge! Center Against Domestic Abuse at the Fox Theatre Sunday night.

It was the third time Suzie Sexton organized the event. She adopted the cause largely because she is a prosecutor who works with domestic abuse victims.

"It can be frustrating because victims are very afraid to come to court," Sexton said. "Because they fear retribution, or they're stuck in the cycle of domestic violence."

Vanessa Hollingshead travelled from New York to headline the show.

"On a personal level, it makes me very happy," she said. "Plus, I've known people that have been victims of domestic violence and all kinds of horrible things."

Emerge! has about 50 beds that are almost always full. Kim Thompson works with the organization and said there were 12,000 domestic abuse arrests in Pima County last year.

"It's just been recently that people started talking about this as a problem," Thompson said. "It's been kind of hidden away."

They have a 24-hour bilingual hotline. The number is 888-428-0101.

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