The number of reported domestic violence cases have been on the rise this winter, causing local victim advocates to wonder if the economy is a contributing factor.
"We've had a very full shelter before Christmas," said Lori Adkins, executive director of Serenity Inc., a nonprofit organization in Mountain Home that provides shelter, advocacy and support for victims of violence, abuse, rape and child abuse.
Adkins estimated the shelter has been at least 85 percent full, which is abnormal for this time of year. Typically, the organization sees an increase after New Year's Eve, she said.
"It's not a normal pattern," said Adkins, who has worked in domestic violence victim advocacy for 18 years. She added a few other shelters around the state also are seeing a similar influx....ORIGINAL ARTICLE