BALTIMORE (WJZ) — One week into Maryland’s stay-at-home order, Baltimore County Police Chief Melissa Hyatt released a video directing domestic violence victims and survivors to resources.

“(These are) unusual circumstances where they actually are quarantined with a possible abuser and this goes for not only domestic violence, but for child abuse,” Baltimore County Police Sgt. Vickie Warehime said Monday. “Don’t think those crimes have gone down just because the numbers (may go) down. We just haven’t gotten the reports.”

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Warehime says it’s too early to tell whether domestic violence cases have increased, but numbers could be skewed based on a lack of reporting channels. Teachers, for instance, often make reports of suspected child abuse.

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The video links to several resources like House of Ruth and TurnAround, Inc., organizations that offer round-the-clock services to victims and survivors.

“There’s a lot of individuals who, I think, maybe have had instances of violence in the past and are now dealing with that trauma through this anxiety,” TurnAround Executive Director Amanda Rodriguez said. “Financial instability is concerning and we want to make sure we’re available. The other thing that really concerns me is around the gun sales that went up recently. We know that’s a sign of lethality—or a possible lethality trigger.”

The Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence has a list of domestic violence service providers by locality.

  • House of Ruth’s 24-hour hotline: (410) 889-7884
  • TurnAround’s 24-hour helpline: (443) 279-0379
  • If you feel you are in immediate danger, call 9-1-1.
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For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department’s website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ’s coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.

Paul Gessler