Court records outline a lengthy trail of complaints and counter complaints between Rajaee Black and his ex-wife Wendy Black.
Rajaee Black is accused of killing his ex-girlfriend in Baltimore on Saturday and then travelling to Columbia, where he allegedly turned the gun on his ex-wife and himself.
The two had been wrapped up in a custody battle that began more than three years ago.
Throughout the battle, both Rajaee Black and Wendy Black had been accused of domestic violence. However, the charges had either been withdrawn or dismissed by the court.
“Just because there were a lot of court filings doesn’t mean it’s a ‘he said, she said,'" said Dorothy Lennig, director of the legal clinic at the House of Ruth.
There had been more than 3,600 documents filed in the custody battle. The most recent filing came last week, four days before Rajaee Black allegedly killed his ex-wife along with his ex-girlfriend.
Lennig says abusers often use the courts as a tool of control.
“That’s another way they torment the victims, by filing case after case just to keep having contact and access to her,” said Lennig.
Police say the couple's two children were in a nearby vehicle when the killings happened, but were not injured.