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Domestic Violence Cases A Tough Subject To Tackle During Holidays

DENVER (CBS4) - Domestic violence is a very sensitive issue, especially during the holiday season. But when it comes to trends in domestic violence, CBS4 learned there really isn't one. Unfortunately, it's happening year-round.

Not even Christmas is safe. In Pueblo a man was shot and killed after he fired a gun at police. Officers were initally called out because of a domestic dispute.

Timely indicents like that make headlines, and many are under the impression that domestic violence increases around the holidays.

Dora Lee Larson with SafeHouse Denver, a counseling and advocacy center, said that their phones aren't ringing any more during the holidays than at any time of year.

"We certainly don't see crisis calls increasing, we don't see increasing numbers of women and children coming into shelters," she said.

That doesn't mean it's not happening, though. Many victims just aren't reporting it.

"A lot of times women have to because of the controlling nature of their partners try and maintain as much sanity as they possibly can in the household during the holidays because there's so many social expectations and personal expectations," Larson said.

Larson says there's not really a time of year when they see a spike in domestic violence. One myth is it rises around the Super Bowl.

She says, though, it's any time you combine drugs, alcohol and social expectations.

"So there's really no predictability except for those other social factors I talked about, especially alcohol," she said.

That's why this holiday season they want to remind victims about the many resources that are available. One of the most important is the SafeHouse Denver 24-7 hotline.

"The advocates will basically let them talk and identify whatever their needs are," Larson said.

For any victims out there, SafeHouse also has a message.

"You deserve more than this. It's not your fault," she said.


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