Murder victim’s son, 37, who was just 15 when his stepfather killed his mother joins the police to stop other women suffering the same fate
- PC Mike Taggart, 37, is heading up a police force strategic abuse team in Wales
- His mother, Donna Crist, 36, was murdered by her domestic abuser husband
- Stepfather Derek Evans, 54, stabbed her 11 times when she asked for a divorce
PC Mike Taggart joined the police and became part of a domestic violent unit after his mother was killed by his stepfather when he was just a teenager
A murder victim’s son who was just a teenager when his mother was killed by his abusive stepfather has joined the police to stop other women suffering the same fate.
PC Mike Taggart, now 37, was only 15 years old when his mother, Donna Crist, was stabbed to death by her husband, Derek Evans.
And now he is trying to help other women against domestic violence by heading up a police force strategic abuse team.
Ms Crist, 36, suffered years of domestic abuse before she was killed by Evans, 54, after telling him she wanted a divorce.
Evans went to her house to discuss splitting their assets and ended up stabbing her 11 times.
PC Taggart said: ‘It was the last year of GCSEs and I went a bit off the rails, I lost my whole world in one fell swoop.
‘It comes back to haunt you, I think, as a kid, you don’t appreciate the magnitude of things, it comes back and hits you like a big tonne of bricks when you’re an adult.’
PC Mike Taggart, 37, (pictured left as a child with his mother) was only 15 years old when his mother, Donna Crist, was stabbed to death by her husband, Derek Evans. Ms Crist was stabbed 11 times by her abusive husband
Evans, 54, was sentenced to life in prison but only served 11 years and was released in 2010
Evans, of Rhyl, North Wales, was jailed for life but was released in 2010 after serving 11 years in prison.
PC Taggart is now a strategic abuse officer working for North Wales Police and trains women working in beauty and hair salons to identify the signs of female customers who may be suffering.
He said: ‘If something like that was available to mum at the time it may well have encouraged her to get the help she needed.
‘The trauma that my family went through is one of the things that pushed me to the job to help people who are victims of domestic abuse.
‘It’s something that’s really poignant to my family and me, something that is very important, and something that I really push to promote for anybody supporting victims of domestic abuse.’
He is working with beauty salons and hairdressers across the north Wales region as part of the scheme.
PC Taggart (pictured) is now a strategic abuse officer working for North Wales Police and trains women working in beauty and hair salons to identify the signs of female customers who may be suffering
He said: ‘If something like that was available to mum at the time it may well have encouraged her to get the help she needed’
He said: ‘We are not asking people to do our job – we want them to be the eyes and ears.
‘While having their treatments women do disclose information to professionals, because they trust them.’
Julie Howatson-Broster, 46, who owns Visage Beauty Salon in Denbigh, said the training was ‘invaluable’.
She added: ‘It’s important that they know they have somewhere they can go and that we’re not going to run off and blab.
‘They build trust in you, it’s so they know that in these four walls, it’s not going to go anywhere.’