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Officials: Pima County seeing 'epidemic' of domestic abuse

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month
Posted: 3:19 PM, Oct 02, 2018
Updated: 2018-10-03 14:51:17Z

Emerge! Center Against Domestic Abuse is teaming up with local law enforcement agencies Tuesday night to discuss the "epidemic" of domestic abuse in Pima County.

Pima County Attorney Barbara LaWall, City of Tucson Mayor Jonathan Rothschild, Tucson Police Chief Chris Magnus and Pima County Sheriff Mark Napier will make remarks, according to a press release.

Emerge! Ceo Ed Mercurio-Sakwa and a woman whose mother was killed by an ex-boyfriend last October in Marana will also be speaking.

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The press conference is on October 2 at Jacome Plaza on Stone Avenue from 6 to 7 p.m.

Officials are expected to address the role law enforcement, first responders, and the criminal justice system play in responding to domestic abuse in Pima County. The public will also receive an update about the Arizona Intimate Partner Risk Assessment Instrument System (APRAIS). The recently released assessment between law enforcement and Emerge! was created to fast-track services for survivors who are at high risk for serious injury or death to domestic abuse services. 

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To bring awareness to Domestic Violence Awareness Month , the City of Tucson and Pima County will also "Paint Pima Purple" by lighting government landmarks, like City Hall and the Main Library. The press conference will mark the beginning of the month-long lighting of the buildings. 

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The Pima County Sheriff's Department and the Tucson Police Department receive about 13,000 domestic violence-related calls each year. Responding to these calls costs $3.3 million. 

As of August, there have been 14 domestic-violence related deaths this year. There have been 55 statewide. 

Between July 1, 2017 and June 30, 2018, Emerge! served 5,831 people and provided nearly 28,600 shelter nights for those seeking safety from domestic abuse. Emerge! has received about 5,550 calls on their 24/7 hotline. 

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