Domestic violence continues to be on the rise in Colorado. While women are presumed to be the primary victims of attacks, males also suffer from emotional and physical abuse. While many experience false allegations, the problem shows no signs of slowing.
The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence found that nearly 37% of women and 30.5% of men have experienced abuse and some point in their lives. Those acts can take the form of physical attacks, sexual assault and stalking committed by their intimate partner.
Statistics also reveal that victims, regardless of gender, are hesitant to report acts of domestic violence. While some experts claim that women fear retribution, men feel embarrassed in addition to fear. What both genders have in common is the fear of not being believed and ultimately having to confront the partner that committed the violent acts.
For perpetrators, the signs are obvious and take many forms, including verbal abuse, jealousy, financial control, onsite workplace harassment, and even animal cruelty. Victims’ indicators are more subtle, with many withdrawing from friends and family, suffering from bouts of depression, and possibly experiencing post-traumatic stress disorders.
Even more troubling, women also face the highest risk of abuse when pregnant, potentially putting two lives at risk. The pending arrival of a child changes relationships in different ways. An unexpected pregnancy, in particular, can create financial problems that can lead to acts of violence.
In the shadow of this growing problem, the Stop Abusive and Violent Environments (SAVE) found that more than 10 percent of those arrested and charged with domestic violence are falsely accused. The numbers continue to rise, necessitating those falsely accused to secure skilled and experienced legal representation.