“I’m taking him.”
It’s the terrifying final line of a new ad about guns and domestic violence, where an ex-boyfriend abducts a child and shoots the mother, despite her restraining order and frenzied call to 911.
The haunting scene—depicted in a short ad paid for by a group founded by former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Everytown for Gun Safety—will air in Washington, D.C. and four other states, targeting Sens. Jeff Flake of Arizona, Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, and Dean Heller of Nevada.
For women in America, the scene depicted is all too common: Femicide is committed by intimate partners at a staggering rate; 39% of all murdered women are killed by an intimate partner, compared to 3% of men, according to the Justice Department. That includes current and former spouses, boyfriends, or dates.
Guns are a key factor in domestic violence murders: A woman is five times more likely to be murdered when a gun is accessible, and more intimate partner homicides in the U.S. have been committed with guns than with all other weapons combined, a release from Everytown notes. On average, 48 women are shot to death by intimate partners a month.
“Will you stop this?” the ad asks each senator, pushing for them to vote for a bill proposed by Minnesota Democrat Sen. Amy Klobuchar to ban any intimate partner convicted of domestic violence and stalking from buying firearms. On Wednesday, survivors and advocates will testify at a Senate hearing on the bill.
A recent investigation by The Huffington Post chronicles how one Arkansas woman’s restraining orders and attempts to protect herself with the legal system from an abusive ex-boyfriend found her dead with a gunshot wound to her head, next to her crying four-month old son who was covered in her blood. A Democratic nominee for governor in the state is now seeking to revamp how the state handles domestic violence.
Everytown for Gun Safety is one of the largest and most powerful gun control groups in the country: It includes a handful of smaller campaigns, including Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, backed by the billionaire former mayor. It’s been Bloomberg’s vehicle for pointed lobbying on the issue since the deadly mass shooting at a Connecticut elementary school left 26 dead.
Correction: An earlier version of this story stated that the man in the ad was an ex-husband; he is in fact just referred to as an “ex.”