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Woman dies from beating

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(KYTX) Tyler -- An East Texas woman allegedly beaten by her husband, has died from her injuries. Wednesday just before 1 a.m. 48 year-old Patti McHugh Gage was taken off life support. The alleged attack happened on Thanksgiving at a home in the 7000 block County Road 2307 in Whitehouse.

"The initial report we got was that she had fallen," Lt. Tony Dana with the Smith County Sheriffs Office said.

But it didn't take doctors long to determine Patti McHugh Gage had not fallen. They say she was beaten. The person responsible, Lt. Dana believes, is her husband Kelly Gage.

Gage was charged with aggravated assault causing bodily injury, but his charges could be upgraded to murder. That decision, Lt. Dana said, will be up to the District Attorney.

"He (Gage) indicated to us that he was intoxicated to the point hat he doesn't remember what happened," Lt. Dana said.

Lt. Dana said there are past reports of domestic violence at the gage's home in Whitehouse.  Patti's son tells CBS 19 it has been going on for 11 years.

"We've been to this residence on three different occasions on disturbances since 2003 and every one of those incidents including this one alcohol was involved," Lt. Dana said. "However on all of those occasions that we responded she denied any assault."

And that's a common problem with domestic abuse; victims worried about what will happen if they come forward.

"Her choices are to be homeless with children or put up with abuse. So she has to make that choice," Martha Carney with the East Texas Crisis Center said.

But Carney adds there's a third choice, the East Texas Crisis Center, a safe haven that helps more than 1,500 victims a year.

"We want people to know about our services so they know they don't have to go through this alone," Carney said.

The center offers counseling free protective orders and shelter for women and their children.

"We can help women find housing," she said."We have an economic class. We help her learn budgeting."

A place for a fresh start.

Carney and Lt. Dana hope other victims will make the call for help before its too late for them.

Gage's body has been taken to Dallas for an autopsy.

In Smith County, the crisis center saw 487 victims in 2010. In the same year, two people in Smith County were killed from domestic violence situations.

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