Domestic violence reports increase at month's end

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Timing of the reports correlate with financial problems

According to area law enforcement, domestic violence reports tend to increase in number at the end of each month.

Brian Nichols, Seligman city clerk, said the domestic violence incidents in Seligman are the highest at the end of the month, and Police Chief Terry Burgess said the increases are typically because of financial problems.

"It's typical for domestic violence reports to increase at the end of the month when couples and families living paycheck to paycheck tend to start running out of money," he said. "It seems like money is usually a dominating factor for fixed-income and low-income families involved in domestic violence incidents."

In Seligman, there were 27 physical domestic violence reports and 19 verbal domestic violence reports in 2013. Nichols said over half of them were reported toward the end of the month.

Cassville domestic violence incidents are also reported primarily toward the end of the month.

Dana Kammerlohr, Cassville police chief, said there is on average seven domestic violence-related incidents in Cassville a month.

"While there are a couple at the beginning of each month, the calls usually come in around the middle and last of the month," she said.

Burgess said there are other factors that contribute to domestic violence calls, especially when alcohol is involved.

"It's common that domestic violence reports are made when a fight about money problems breaks out, especially when alcohol is involved and a lot of those occur toward the end of each month," Burgess said. "Financial problems and alcohol the two largest factors we get for domestic violence reports."

Kammerlohr says the Cassville Police Department dispatches two officers to domestic violence calls. Upon arrival, they assess the scene for safety concerns and separate the parties involved. They assess the need for Emergency Medical Service and call if needed. Police then interview the parties separately and witnesses, making an arrest if probable cause is found.

According to Missouri State Highway Patrol officials, there are on average 314 domestic violence-related reports made in Barry County each year. Domestic violence-related incidents are reported whether or not an arrest is made.

Those who may be having trouble at home may call the National Domestic Violence Hotline, 1-800-799-SAFE (7233).

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