Christine Pittman, 26, had filed a protection from abuse order in August after Barbour was charged with harassment and simple assault, Franklin County Court records show.
Patrick Atkinson, who was living with Pittman at 1628 Magnolia Court, fired the fatal shots, police said. He has not been charged, although police say the investigation is not over.
In that and other recent deaths, court orders did not prevent violence.
"You can take all the precautions in the world and that's not going to guarantee your safety," Channing said. "If you have an abuser that's determined, it's just a constant fear you have to live with."
Still, Channing and other domestic violence advocates say women shouldn't give up hope.
Protection orders give prosecutors another avenue to send abusers to jail. In some cases, it is easier to prove that someone violated protection order than committed an assault, Cirincion said.
Confidential shelters also can protect women.
Heartly House, a shelter in Frederick, Md., has been at or near its 29-bed capacity since the holidays, said Executive Director Warren Spaid.
Another alternative for women in Frederick: A pendant which gives them a direct line to the police. A push of the necklace's button automatically calls the police.
Women who shoot their alleged batterers aren't always protected by self-defense laws, Cirincion said.
She cited women convicted of murder for killing their longtime abusers when their own lives were not in danger.
In some cases - a threat from someone who has shot at you before, for example - victims might be justified carrying guns, said Nathan Cochran, assistant prosecuting attorney in Berkeley County, W.Va.
Local experts offer these suggestions for people living in fear of an abuser:
- Get a protection order
- Don't initiate any contact with the abuser.
- If the person violates the protection order, alert police. Document precisely what the abuser has done.
- Determine possible escape routes in your home.
- Find a neighbor you trust and develop a signal - maybe turning on a porch light - to let the person know you are in trouble.
- Work out a code word with your children to let them know to call 911.
- If someone is following you in the car, go to a police station or where there will be other people.