Domestic violence calls spike this month
When Mesa County Deputy District Attorney Brian Fuselier saw Monday’s docket of fresh arrests, he looked for a second attorney to help carry the load.
That’s because bond hearings that day at the Mesa County Justice Center included 10 domestic-violence arrests — six men and four women — made by Grand Valley law enforcement agencies over a 24-hour period on Sunday. A normal diet of domestic-violence cases accounts for about three arrests daily, Fuselier said.
“It was certainly the most I’ve seen in one day,” the prosecutor said. “There’s nothing I saw about the cases that led me to believe we have any explanation.”
Per usual, alcohol or drug intoxication appeared to be a driving factor in most of the cases entering the system on Monday, Fuselier said.
While officials are unable to account for a root cause, an apparent surge in domestic violence is stressing other aspects of the system.
Latimer House, the local shelter for victims of domestic violence, has observed a similar spike in cases for July, according to Jackie Sievers, director of child and family services with Hilltop Community Resources.
Latimer House is averaging 243 calls per month to the facility’s hotline, more than double this time last year, Sievers said. Six victims who turned up at the facility since Thursday were classified as being at “imminent risk,” a significant surge in activity, Sievers said Tuesday.
“July tends to be a slower month,” she said. “Any pressure on a family, usually economic issues, can spike domestic violence.”