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Cook County Judge Orders Domestic Violence Hearings Continue To Be Held Remotely

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Just one week after CBS 2 exposed big concerns from domestic violence victims, Cook County's top judge has ordered all domestic violence hearings will continue to be held remotely.

Those cases were scheduled to go back in person this month, but victims' advocates argued fearful victims would once again be forced to come face to face with their abusers.

Twenty people per minute are abused by a partner in the United States. Most of those victims - according to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence – are women, and they may eventually turn to the courts for help.

"A lot of times, just the idea of being face-to-face with a perpetrator for proceedings – that stops them from taking any kind of action," said violence recovery specialist Rida Shahzad.

She said in-person court appearances also mean abusers know where to find their victims.

"That's a big fear – because they always have to be on the watch – on the lookout – and they always have this fear that, 'OK, maybe he's going to come after me again,'" Shahzad said.

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