MORGAN COUNTY, Ala. – A major increase in domestic violence calls and DUI tickets during the pandemic has the sheriff’s office brainstorming ‘why?’
There has been a 54% increase in DUIs from last year to this one, and 23.7% increase in domestic violence calls. The spike is due to a number of things related to the pandemic, Sheriff Ron Puckett said.
Sheriff Puckett said the increase in call volume is a direct result of intense stress and unhealthy ways of dealing with that stress.
“If we don’t have the right coping mechanisms to deal with that sometimes criminal activity takes place, or they get so bored they turn to drugs, they turn to alcohol and they, then get involved with domestic violence instances,” Sheriff Puckett said.
He went on to explain being separated from society, less involved in activities and being stuck at home all contribute to these forms of abuse.
Some of these behaviors are coming from individuals who may not have even known they were capable of having these issues, because before the pandemic, they had these accesses, privileges and distractions that they no longer have.
This is not an exclusive to Morgan County. There has been a spike in the state, but even more widespread, it is a problem law enforcement teams all over the nation are working towards solving.