This article contains references to domestic abuse and may be triggering for some readers. If you or someone you know is affected by domestic violence, please call 1800 RESPECT (1800 737 732).
On May 30, 2003, at a motocross event in Karratha WA, Annette Murcott was humiliatingly arrested in front of a crowd of people for the alleged murder of her abusive boyfriend of five years.
But being put in handcuffs for a crime she didn't commit is not the most significant thing she remembers from that day.
It's her then eight-year-old son's devastated face that's forever etched in her memories.
"They wouldn't let me say goodbye to him. It felt like the ground had opened up and I was falling down a great big hole," she told Mamamia, while talking about her newly released memoir I'm Not Afraid of You.
Annette's story is harrowing, and that book title is not just a reflection of her horrific treatment by police. It's also a big fat middle finger to cancer, a diagnosis she received 16 months after arriving in prison.
WATCH: Women and violence, the hidden numbers. Post continues after video.
Annette met Bevan when she was 26.
He was good-looking, funny, 11 years her senior, and most importantly he got along with her young son. But it didn't take long for him to start using his fists, and pretty soon Annette found herself living a nightmare - with the domestic violence only escalating as time went on.
He'd drag her by her hair out of pubs, strangle her, choke her, and cut the phone lines so she couldn't escape while he'd try and suffocate her with a pillow. Sometimes he'd try and drown her, or punch her in the face in public or bite literal chunks out of her skin. He didn't care who saw him, because every time Annette did involve the police, nothing happened.
One time when the police were at their house, he broke an officer's fingers as they tried to put him in the back of a paddy wagon.
"I'm terrified of him. Wherever I go, he comes," she'd told them.
But despite 15 DVOs and reams of paperwork documenting the abuse Bevan subjected Annette to over the years, all of that documentation was mysteriously 'lost' by the time Annette was the one in handcuffs.
"The justice system in Australia is disgusting. I think there was a lot of corruption in the police force, a lot of bullying, a lot of lies.... I always say it's like 1902," she told Mamamia. "And it's like women don't have a voice. I think in a lot of ways, it's a man's world. You can scream all you like, they won't come."