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Police: Domestic violence on rise in Phoenix amid pandemic

April 09, 2020 - 9:42 AM

PHOENIX - Domestic violence has increased in Phoenix as more people remain home during the coronavirus pandemic, authorities said.

The Phoenix Police Department dispatched officers to 3,587 domestic violence calls in March as travel restrictions and stay-at-home orders were implemented to combat the spread of COVID-19, KTAR-FM reported Thursday.

It represented a 5.6% increase in officers responding to reports of family fights or aggravated assault of domestic partners compared to the 3,395 incidents reported in March 2019, police said.

“We are seeing an increase in these types of calls, but I think it goes back to what people are living through and trying to cope through, many people aren’t working because of the public health crisis,” Sgt. Mercedes Fortune said.

She said the reports appeared to increase more after Republican Gov. Doug Ducey issued a stay-at-home order on March 31.

Police received 942 domestic violence calls in the first week of April, a 15% increase compared to the 820 calls made the same time last year, Fortune said.

“Regardless of the health crisis we are in right now, I think this serves as a reminder for people to be kind to each other and have a little more patience,” Fortune said.

Arizona public health officials on Thursday reported 3,018 cases and 89 deaths statewide related to COVID-19.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death. The vast majority of people recover.

News from © The Associated Press, 2020
The Associated Press

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