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Half of murders in Maine are tied to domestic violence, one father continues fight to prevent them

More than three years after her death, Stephanie Ginn Gebo's father is still fighting to save other lives.

ABBOT (NEWS CENTER Maine) – Vance Ginn and his family celebrated his daughter’s 41st birthday Sunday, but she was not there.

“I think of my daughter every day of my life,” Ginn said. "We're supposed to be the protector of our children.”

His daughter Stephanie Ginn Gebo was killed inside her Parkman home in June 2015 when her ex-boyfriend, Robert Burton, broke into her home and shot her.

The murder launched the largest manhunt in state history.

Ginn said her death could have been prevented, if Burton was wearing an electronic ankle monitor.

"If that's what we have to do to stop it so that people don't have to sleep with a gun under their pillow for the last week of their life then so be it,” Ginn said.

More than half of the people murder in the first 8 months of 2018 were domestic violence related, according to Maine State Police spokesperson Steve McCausland.

Dozens of the monitors for domestic violence offenders are now being used across the state to keep track of their whereabouts.

A proposed bill to bring almost $2 million in funding to monitoring programs statewide was shot down by lawmakers in Augusta in January.

The first system was started in Somerset county in 2014 when money was raised in honor of Amy Bagley Lake and her three children who were murdered in Dexter in 2010.

"The financial barrier is the biggest one,” Kennebec and Somerset County District Attorney Maeghan Maloney said. ”The way we dealt with that is as soon as we got the start-up cost we then charged the offender to wear the electronic monitoring bracelet."

That kind of system has allowed at least a dozen counties in Maine to launch similar programs—except for Pistcataquis County where Ginn Gebo was killed.

Piscataquis and Penobscot County District Attorney, Chris Almy, said the need has not warranted such a program in Piscataquis even though one exists in Penobscot.

"It make sense in certain situations,” Almy said. "Piscataquis County is certainly open to it when the need arises"

So Ginn has taken efforts into his own hands with the goal of bringing monitors to every county in the state—starting in Piscataquis.

The systems cost as much as $15,000 to get started. Ginn said he plans to hold a series of fundraisers this year to raise the money necessary.

"I don't want anybody else to feel the hole that I feel in my heart and my guts,” Ginn said.

Ginn’s first event is a pig roast in Greenville on Saturday.

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