Ed Reilly

200 Teens Attend Seminar Addressing Serious Issues.

January 10, 2013 Updated Jan 10, 2013 at 9:21 PM EDT

By WKBW Admin

January 10, 2013 Updated Jan 10, 2013 at 9:21 PM EDT

SANBORN, N.Y (WKBW) Over 200 Niagara County High School students took part in the 26th annual "Police, Youth, and Community Relations Seminar" hosted at Niagara County Community College.

Sponsored by the Lockport Police, Niagara County Youth Bureau, and North Tonawanda Department of Youth, Parks and Recreation, the seminars bring 11th and 12th grade students together to talk about very serious issues like HIV, teen pregnancy, and date violence.

"So we hope they take that information with them and use that in their everyday lives," added Kristin Bernardi, program coordinator for the Lockport Youth Department.

One of the newer seminars added was a discussion about domestic and date violence.

"That is very, very big. It is more widespread than its ever been in the 28-years that I've been doing this job," commented Diane Sheehan, program coordinator.

Leading the discussion was Amy Wiltse, a former Wilson Central High School cheerleading coach, and the subject is very personal to her.

In 2008, one of her former cheerleaders, 18-year old Kari Ann Gorman, was shot and killed by her boyfriend after she broke up with him.

The 19-year old then took his own life.

Warning signs of a trouble teenage relationship include signs of physical injury, truancy in school, sudden falling or slipping grades, dropping out of sports or other activities that were important to the teen, change in mood, use of drugs or alcohol, emotional outbursts, isolation from family and friends.

"If you feel that your are in a situation, first of all, you need to tell somebody immediately. Somebody that you trust," advised Wiltse.

If you are being stalked by a former boyfriend or girlfriend, "Change your routine. never be alone. Always be with a group of friends."

Very important: a teenager in a troubled relationship should not post information on social media.

"Don't post stuff on Facebook. Don't bad mouth your abuser." cautioned Amy Wiltse.