Domestic violence up in NYC: Report

Sarah Coit is one of thousands of New York City women allegedly battered at the hands of her boyfriend — and their numbers are increasing.

The Manhattan district attorney’s office reported a 7 percent increase in domestic violence arrests — and a 36 percent increase in indictments — from 2009 to 2010.

Coit, 23, was murdered Sunday by boyfriend Raul Barrera, cops said. His record already showed seven domestic violence incidents.

Like Coit, thousands across the city are in danger of partners turned batterers.  

At the New York City Family Justice Center, weekly visits by domestic violence clients have increased by 16 percent since last year, said Ruth Villalonga, spokeswoman for the Mayor’s Office to Combat Domestic Violence.

Villalonga estimates she sees about 100 more people a week this year than last. That’s an increase of 37 percent since 2009, she said.

Meanwhile, Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance is fighting to make repeated domestic assault offenses a felony.

Officials urge residents to call 311 if you or someone you know is experiencing domestic or dating violence. “Silence ultimately kills,” Villalonga said.

Barrera, facing murder charges, will be in court again tomorrow.

Follow Alison Bowen on Twitter at @AlisonatMetro.


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