Domestic Violence

No one deserves to be hurt or frightened by another person.  You can get help 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

What is Domestic Violence?

Domestic Violence, or family violence, is the use of force or threats by a family member, household member or partner to exert power and control over you. 

  • It includes physical violence such as hitting, strangling, forced sex or throwing things at you.


  • It includes threats of violence that make you afraid of harm. 
  • It also includes emotional and financial violence, like calling you names or making you feel worthless, controlling your money, not allowing you to see people, or tracking your actions. 


IF THIS IS HAPPENING TO YOU, REMEMBER- IT IS NOT YOUR FAULT.  There is no excuse for violence.   And you are not alone!  You can get help.


How to get help

The Adams Police Department has special training to help.  Sergeant Shawn Briggs is our special domestic violence officer.   

We also have a special program where a counselor from Elizabeth Freeman Center, the county domestic violence and rape crisis center program, works out of the Adams Police Department.  She is not part of the police department but is available at our location to talk with you or help you get legal protection, financial compensation, counseling, shelter, or other services.  Elizabeth Freeman Center’s services are free and confidential.

  • If you are in immediate danger, call 911.


  • To report an act of violence or past act of violence, call the Adams Police Department at (413) 743-1212.
  • To talk confidentially with a domestic violence counselor for help or information, even if you do not want to talk with the police, call Elizabeth Freeman Center any time at 1-866-401-2425.


What kind of help can I get?

1.  If you call the police

  • If you are in danger and call 911, police will come quickly to your house. 
  • If you call or come in to our office, we will listen and talk with you about what we can do and what you can do.


We will not force you to press charges, but the police do make the decision to arrest someone or not arrest someone based on our investigation.  We will also refer you for help from Elizabeth Freeman Center through our special program with them.

2.  If you call or talk to a counselor from Elizabeth Freeman Center

Help from Elizabeth Freeman Center is free and confidential.  You can get help 24/7 by calling the free hotline at 1-866-401-2425. 

Elizabeth Freeman Center counselors are specially trained and have special privacy protections.  They will listen to you and give you information about what you can do.  They will not give your information to the police unless you want them to.  They can talk with you whether you decide to leave or not.  They will talk with you over the phone, at their offices, at a safe place, or at the Adams Police Department.

They can help you

  • with emergency needs like food, phone, transportation, shelter
  • in court to get protection orders


  • with plans for safety for you, your children and your pets
  • with counseling for you and your children


  • get money for your bills or housing, and
  • many other things. 
  • They are covered by special privacy rules and release no information without your consent.  
  • Their services are free and available to victims of violence and their non-offending family members.


To reach Elizabeth Freeman Center,

  • call the hotline at 1-(866)-401-2425 or (413) 499-2425;


  • call their counselor who works out of the Adams Police Department, Kelly, at 413-347-0117; or
  • call or go to one of their offices:


85 Main Street, Suite 300
North Adams, MA 01247
(413) 663-7459

43 Francis Avenue
Pittsfield, MA 01201
(413) 499-2425 (voice and TTY)

401 Stockbridge Road
Great Barrington, MA 01230
(413) 429-8190