Disturbing trend of domestic violence in Tri-State

By Dan Wells - bio | email

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - There has been a disturbing trend of deadly assaults tied to domestic violence in the Tri-State recently.

Three crimes in five days have left four people dead and one person injured. Incidents include a murder-suicide in Price Hill on Saturday, a murder suicide in Clermont County on Monday and then a shooting rampage in Evanston on Wednesday.

The victim in the Evanston shooting is in stable condition at University Hospital. This shooting is the latest in a string of violent attacks against women in the Tri-State.

"To see three in the last week when we had one in the last year is of concern, absolutely," said Kendall Fisher, executive director of Women Helping Women.

Unfortunately, the incident in Evanston played out in an all-too familiar way, according to experts at Women Helping Woman, a social service agency providing crisis intervention, education and prevention services.

"We really hope in the wake of these very public instances that will encourage people to reach out and get the support that they need," said Ashley Rouster, the Abuse Education Coordinator at Women Helping Women.

Clinical experts say victims need to seek outside help before trying to leave or deal with their abusers. In fact, domestic abuse counselors say it's the most dangerous time for a victim, and when most violent incidents take place.

"We know here in Hamilton County, of the women killed within the last 10 years ending in 2006, that 77 percent of them were killed during a period of separation from their batterer," said Fisher.

Unfortunately, in this latest case, that anger was never addressed until it exploded in gunfire.

"If I look at the first quarter of 2008 versus the first quarter of 2009, we have seen our hotline calls increase by about 160 percent," said Fisher. "We saw about a 170 percent increase in court cases we've been involved in this years versus last."

Officials say the increased calls are a good thing, because it means more victims are reaching out.