Domestic violence survivor shot multiple times by her ex-husband now spends her life helping others break the cycle

Dollita Okine April 19, 2024
Kimya Motley is a domestic violence survivor. Photo via: ACTM

Kimya Motley’s near-fatal encounter with domestic abuse made her stronger and helped pave the way for her current career as the CEO and founder of a nonprofit organization that promotes stable families.

She told Fox5, “I want my story to serve a purpose to help other people know number one, God is still in the miracle making business. Number two, they can overcome any tragedy.”

Motley never thought she would become the victim of such a horrifying act of domestic abuse, but in 2011, her ex-husband shot her four times—in the face, back of her skull, and neck—and then shot her daughter, who was ten years old, in the head.

She told Essence that after a string of failed romances, she saw her ex-husband as a God-sent. But she quickly understood this couldn’t be more wrong. Soon after, he began abusing Motley and her kids spiritually, physically, and financially.

She described how he persuaded her to obey by implying that acquiescing to him was a show of her love for him as a good wife, which she quickly understood was his form of covert manipulation that became undeniable.

After trying to file a restraining order against him, she returned to him as he pledged to improve. However, it only resulted in the worst of outcomes.

Nevertheless, she and her daughter made it through the gunshot, and his attempt on her life gave her a new lease on life and a purpose. Her ex-husband, Terence Roberson, is currently serving a 65-year prison sentence.

Overcoming the circumstance, she launched Haven of Light International, a nonprofit organization aimed at assisting families affected by domestic abuse, and she also serves as the leader of FOCUS, a relationship support group for women at her church.

Motley also documented her ordeal in a memoir titled “Born of Violence,” which debuted at number four on the Amazon Hot New Releases List for Partner Abuse.

The mompreneur is now the chief communications officer for A Call to Men (ACTM), a Black-led nonprofit organization dedicated to transforming society by promoting healthy manhood through training and educational resources for businesses, government agencies, schools, and community organizations. She joined the group in 2021 after embarking on a self-education path in which she learned what abuse truly looked like.

Research shows that more than 40% of Black women will experience domestic violence in their lifetime. Motley explained to Essence that the organization’s fundamental mission is to provide concrete materials for promoting respectful interactions and relationship building between men and women, girls, LGBQ, Trans, and nonbinary individuals.

“It starts with self respect,” she expressed. “When I see the way these men show up every day to stand alongside me and other women to say, not on our watch, {to disrespect displayed by males}, it’s so inspiring. It heals the little girl in me, the little girl that saw my father beating my mom, the little girl that was being sexually assaulted. It heals that part of me to work alongside them to end this violence.”

Motley, who served as an EIP and Transitions instructor at Rosebud Elementary School in Gwinnett County, was chosen the 2015–16 Teacher of the Year, according to the Covington News.

In addition, she has received widespread recognition for her achievements as a committed advocate for victims’ rights from organizations including the Georgia Commission on Family Violence, The Investigation Discovery Channel, and former Georgia Governor Nathan Deal.

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: April 19, 2024


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