Agencies expect increase in domestic violence as many are forced inside

NOW: Agencies expect increase in domestic violence as many are forced inside

ST. JOSEPH COUNTY, Ind. -- As many are forced to stay inside during the coronavirus outbreak, local support services say that it could affect rates of domestic violence.

Services say that the situation could go either way, as people don’t typically commit acts of domestic violence with children around.

However, officials say the amount of stress caused by the COVID-19 pandemic could cause situations to escalate.

Sergeant Ted Bohner with the Indiana State Police says that fear could greatly contribute and cause a rise of domestic violence cases because everyone is forced to stay in close quarters.

“I’d probably be naive to say that there isn’t the possibility just because people are going to be home more and get on each other’s nerves because willets face it it’s not only just being home and together it’s part of that fear of the unknown that’s kind of cooking underneath everything,” Sergeant Bohner said.

Support service officials also say that with so many worries on everyone’s minds, there is an increase in stress that will make matters especially worse in domestic violence situations.

“Finances are stressed, people are worried about their work, they’re worried about their health, their family members. Any time you have an increase in stress that has the ability to make things more tense when it comes to domestic violence,” said Dayna Baxter, advocate for St. Joseph County Family Justice Center.

If you find yourself in a potentially dangerous situation related to domestic violence, you are not alone.

You can confidentially call the National Domestic Violence hotline at any time at 1-800-799-7233.

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