According to DeLand police department records, officers were called out to the Hall home at least nine times since July 2007. Each incident involved Kufner.Despite Kufner's threats and acts of violence, the family elected not to pursue a restraining order because they felt that he was getting his life together, and they did not want to put an unnecessary blemish on his record. This is an interesting distinction between dating violence and stalking or harrassment by a stranger. If Kufner hadn't been known to the family, it is highly unlikely that Hall or her family would have cared what legal action might do to his life.
Records show that Kufner was charged with battery twice, cases that were pending in court. The Hall family also accused Kufner of stalking, threatening to burn down their house, and making harassing phone calls.
However, given the actions of the DeLand Police Department before and after this tragic murder, it is not surprising that the family was convinced that taking legal action would not help their daughter.
January 15th was the last time Hall contacted the DeLand Police Department. The harassment continued after that date, but according to her mother, Natasha was told by police that if she didn't stop calling them she would be arrested.
"The police officer said if you call us one more time on him, I'm going to arrest you both," [Natasha's mother] said. "So, the day she died, she knew she couldn't talk to police. So, she handled it herself.Phone records have not yet been released to confirm or deny this report, but the statement issued by Chief Deputy Randel Henderson of the DeLand Police Department certainly suggests a tendency to dismiss the severity of dating violence. Henderson told reporters, "Basically we have a very young couple who are experiencing, at least up until last Friday evening, just very normal relationship problems."
The "normal relationship problems" the Chief Deputy is referring to, according to DeLand Police Department records, include Kufner posting nude photos of Hall on the internet, hitting her in the face, and threatening to burn down her home.
The bottom line is that a child is dead because she was expected to assume responsibility for a violent and dangerous person's behavior solely because she made the mistake of dating him.
For more information on teen dating violence, visit Break the Cycle .