Upstate deputies seeing uptick in domestic violence calls, impact of COVID-19 could be to blame


CHEROKEE COUNTY, S.C. (WSPA) – Upstate deputies told 7 News they’re handling a growing number of domestic violence calls. Some departments think it could get worse with a lot of people spending more time at home.

Beverly Vercher is gearing up to teach a class about something she’s very well-educated on, domestic violence.

“I just want to inform our community and everyone about domestic violence,” said Domestic Violence Advocate, Beverly Vercher.

This is very personal to Vercher. She told us she’s a victim of domestic violence herself.

“As a young teen, early 20’s, I had a serious domestic violence relationship that turned bluntly, really bad,” said Vercher.

But now she spends a lot of her time helping other victims, those of which she has been hearing from a lot more in recent weeks.

“It went from a couple calls a night to a lot. I’m up most of the night taking calls from people who are afraid, they’re sick and can’t get medical attention,” Vercher told us.

Cherokee County Sheriff Steve Mueller told us it’s something they’re seeing too. He said the number of domestic violence cases for March have gone up from previous months and he said he expects that trend to continue.

“We know from our work we do in the field everyday, the more those families are together for long periods of time, it creates problems,” said Cherokee County Sheriff, Steve Mueller.

Sheriff Mueller said they typically see a spike in cases around the holidays with more people home and financial burdens stacking up, similar to what’s happening now.

But both Sheriff Mueller and Vercher agree. Even though business isn’t running as usual in most places, help is still out there.

“We still have resources that are available and we can still get you help here even in the middle of the crisis,” said Mueller.

Over county lines in Spartanburg, the sheriff there told us they have seen a slight uptick in domestic violence cases. The same goes in Laurens County where the sheriff there told us they’re unfortunately anticipating more cases.

Advocate, Beverly Vercher is planning a domestic violence class in June to raise awareness and talk about the signs along with resources in the community. We have information on how you can sign up here:

She told us she will let people know ahead of time if the class needs to be pushed back to a later day.

Additionally, if you are a victim or know someone who is, there is help out there. You can reach the National Domestic Violence Hotline anytime at 1-800-799-7233.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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