Increase in incidents leads Delta police to update information on relationship violence
VANCOUVER – A recent assault charge in Delta has prompted local police to share their concern about increased assaults and robberies, many of which happen between people who know each other.
On Friday, Delta police took the unique step of sharing some details of domestic or family violence incidents, which is usually not done because of privacy concerns.
However, a rise in reports over the past 18 months of situations known as "persons offences" – which can include assault, robbery and relationship violence – led to police sharing information about complaints they've received this month.
In one case, a man is being investigated for allegedly choking his girlfriend. In another, threats were made against a loss prevention officer.
In a third incident, a Delta man was charged with assault after allegedly throwing his mother to the ground, grabbing a weapon and leaving home when his parents tried to intervene in his struggles with addiction. Police say they will not be releasing the man's name.
"Really, what it comes down to is that everyone deserves to be safe in their home," said Const. Ben Whitehead of Delta police’s domestic violence unit.
"A happy and safe home is the bedrock of a safe community. We want people in Delta to be aware that allegations of intimate partner violence, threats or harassment will be treated seriously and thoroughly investigated."
In response to this rise, Delta police have updated its information on relationship violence. Online resources now include information on counselling, transition houses and legal assistance. The website also has definitions and diagrams to help residents understand the cycle of violence and what abuse is.
Police say they'll also be updating their resources for those who struggle with anger and addiction in the coming weeks.
Anyone who needs assistance dealing with relationship violence is encouraged to contact Delta police at 604-946-4411 and ask for the domestic violence unit. In an emergency, however, call 911.
"We want those people who have suffered abuse to come forward so we can help them take back their lives, for the sake of their future and their children's futures," Whitehead said. "They deserve better."