SafeNest experts: 'Domestic violence becoming an epidemic'


Right now, the valley is seeing higher murder and violent cases stemming from domestic violence, according to officials with SafeNest.

On Friday, SafeNest held a community roundtable on domestic violence with city and county leaders to discuss how to tackle what is being considered an epidemic.

“The homicide rate and the violent rates that we are seeing in domestic violence are very high,” said SafeNest CEO Liz Ortenburger.

They're cases that leave many families, feeling empty, confused and asking why.

It's a question Ortenburger says they're working on finding out why too.

“There are legislative answers, there are judicial answers,” Ortenburger said.

Right now, Henderson police are investigating two separate apparent murder-suicides.

One left two boys, a 15 and 5-year-old dead.

According to police, a man shot and killed the two boys and an ex-girlfriend before setting a home on fire and shooting and killing himself.

People who knew the couple say they broke up months ago.

“I knew the guy. I lived here for thirteen years. It's first thing anything like this has happened,” a neighbor said.

A separate incident left a man and a woman dead in a different part of Henderson. Both cases possibly stemming from domestic violence.

Ortenburger says the most dangerous time for a victim is when they are getting ready to leave or have already left a domestic violence situation.

“If there is a gun in the household or a batterer has access to a gun or if you have been strangled within the relationship those are markers that you're walking towards lethality,” Ortenburger said.

She says Clark County carries 85% to 90% of the state's reported domestic violence cases.

“If we can understand why then potentially we can get to a solution differently,” Ortenburger said.

She says it's open discussions with city and county leaders that'll help find a resolution to help save lives and families heartache.

If you or anyone you know is in crisis SafeNest offers a 24-hour hotline.

That number is 702-646-4981.

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