LYNNWOOD, WA - A violent attack played out inside a Lynnwood Rite Aid Sunday night.
Police say a boyfriend stabbed his girlfriend multiple times in the store, in front of employees. KING 5 has discovered the young accused perpetrator has a troubling history of domestic violence.
According to police, the 19-year-old female victim had just a 6-second head start on her attacker as she ran into the Rite Aid store looking for help.
“She was trying to get away from him and normally going into a public place where other people are around is a good call for your safety,” said Lynnwood Police Detective Bill Koonce.
Her boyfriend, who is accused of stabbing her in several times in the head is just 22-years-old.
Joseph Peralta has a long history of harassment, stalking, and domestic violence with multiple victims. He appears to have avoided treatment at least once and was sentenced to more jail time as a punishment.
“To see a 22-year-old with this amount of criminal history is a little shocking,” said Dr. Dale Todd, a state-certified domestic violence treatment provider.
Adam Ballout, the vice president of Domestic Violence Services of Snohomish County, believes Peralta's history is a systemic problem.
“We have a system where we punish perpetrators, but if that punishment isn't actually rehabilitating them then all we're doing is delaying the next victim until they get out,” said Ballout.
Some may look at domestic violence as a private matter, but both Todd and Ballout say they often have public impact. They point out that two mass shootings, the one at Marysville-Pilchuck High School and the recent Mukilteo party attack, had motives rooted in domestic violence. All of them were young perpetrators.
Experts at DVS of Snohomish County are re-examining how to not only protect the victims they serve here, but prevent these cases from happening.
“When you're seeing that 80 percent of domestic violence goes un-reported, you're seeing the tip of the iceberg possibly in this case of other cases out there,” said Todd.
The 19-year-old victim in this case survived. Surveillance cameras inside the store captured the attack.
Peralta was supposed to appear in court Tuesday, but an attorney acting as a public defender said he was medically incapable of making an appearance.
Copyright 2016 KING