Aisha Fraser Was Allegedly Killed By Her Estranged Husband — Here's What To Know
On Saturday morning, former Cuyahoga County judge Lance Mason was arrested after allegedly killing his estranged wife, according to local media reports. Aisha Fraser, a teacher at Woodbury Elementary School, was in the midst of a divorce from Mason at the time of her death, which she filed for after Mason assaulted her in 2014 and went to prison, NBC News reported.
Woodbury Elementary is a part of Shaker Heights Schools. The schools' interim superintendent Stephen M. Wilkins called Fraser's death an "unimaginable" loss. "Aisha was a devoted mother and a longtime committed teacher to Woodbury students. She touched so many of our children’s lives and will be deeply missed," Wilkins said in a statement. "Her loss is unexpected and the impact of this news on our entire school community is unimaginable and profound."
Fraser taught history and math to sixth graders at Woodbury Elementary, according to Shakerite, the Shaker Heights High School student newspaper. Multiple former students described Fraser as incredibly caring and always there for her students. "She made sure that all of her students felt heard and she was able to create a relationship between all of us," former student Faith Jalango told Shakerite. "If I was ever having a bad day, she would let me come and eat lunch in her room."
Fraser had two daughters, according to NBC News: Audrey, 11, and Ava, 8.
(This article includes details about the alleged incident that some may find disturbing.)
Lance Mason Was Taken Into Custody On Saturday
Lance Mason was Fraser's husband and a former Cuyahoga County judge. (Cleveland.com reported that their divorce was not yet finalized.) Mason pleaded guilty to "one count of attempted felonious assault and one count of domestic violence" in 2015, and went on to spend nine months in prison, according to WKYC, the Cleveland NBC affiliate.
Mason was also previously a member of the Ohio state House of Representatives and Ohio state Senate.
WKYC reported in the 2015 assault that police said that Mason punched Fraser 20 times and slammed her head against the dashboard while they were driving with their children. Fraser sued because the injuries required surgery, and she was awarded $150,000 in damages, according to the news station.
After serving time in prison, Mason was hired by the city of Cleveland to be the director of minority business administrator for the city in 2017. City Hall announced his firing on Saturday. "I extend my deepest condolences to the family of Ms. Aisha Fraser, especially to her children," Cleveland Mayor Frank G. Jackson said in a statement, according to WKYC.
What We Know Happened To Aisha Fraser
Shaker Heights Police said in a statement officers responded to a 9111 call on the 17000 block of Chagrin Blvd. in Shaker Heights. WKYC reported that Fraser's body was in the driveway, while Mason and a police officer were transported to a local hospital.
Mason was taken into custody, and the investigation into Fraser's death began, according to Shaker Heights Police.
There's A GoFundMe For Her Daughters
The Shaker Heights Teachers’ Association is collecting funds to help her two daughters during this tragic time. In one day, the fundraiser accumulated more than $91,000 of the $100,000 goal. You can donate here.
Donate To Domestic Violence Shelters & Organizations
In 2017, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced findings that more than 55 percent of female homicides had to do with partner violence — and that a majority of those deaths were done at the hands of their male partners.
There are a number of organizations and shelters working to end domestic violence and support people leaving domestic violence situations. On a national level, you can support The National Domestic Violence Hotline. In Ohio, you can donate to Ohio Domestic Violence Network or ACTION OHIO Coalition For Battered Women.
If you need need support, The National Domestic Violence Hotline can be reached at 1-800-799-SAFE (7233), or 1-800-787-3224 (TTY)