Domestic violence murders increased in North Carolina in 2012, increasing 15 percent to 122, North Carolina’s attorney general said Tuesday.
Attorney General Roy Cooper said 106 murders were attributed to domestic violence in 2011. Of the victims in 2012, 78 were women and 44 were men. Of the killers, 104 were men and 18 were women.
“I have great concern about this increase,” Cooper said in a news release. “It’s clear that North Carolina must do more to stop domestic abuse before it turns deadly.”
Wake County, the state’s second-most populous county, reported 11 domestic violence murders, the most in the state. Mecklenburg County, the state’s most populous, was second with eight, followed by Guilford County, the third most populous county, with six.
Robeson County has less than a third of Guilford’s population and had five domestic violence murders. Other counties that reported more domestic violence homicides than expected for their population include Catawba, Harnett, Henderson, and Scotland counties, which had four each.
Beth Froehling, executive director of the N.C. Coalition Against Domestic Violence, said the information about the murders can help inform the development of policy and legislation to address the problem. The increase underscores the need for more resources for domestic violence victims, better enforcement of laws against abusers, and increased education and awareness, Cooper said.
Law enforcement agencies must report domestic violence-related murders yearly to the State Bureau of Investigation.