By Jennifer Loren, The News On 6
TULSA, OK -- News of domestic drama involving entertainers Rihanna and Chris Brown could not come at a worse time for young, easily-influenced Okahomans.
A local domestic violence organization says domestic violence is already on the rise and the highly publicized case adds fuel to the fire.
"That's pretty serious," said Tracey Redmon, director of Domestic Violence Intervention Services in Tulsa. "She could have been killed by him and could still be."
Redmon fears the public case will have a bad influence on young people.
"I think the message that some of the teens are getting from Chris Brown is that it's OK to harm someone you love or care about or your girlfriend," she said.
She also fears Rihanna is sending a bad message to young girls and to women everywhere.
"If Rihanna has reunited with Chris Brown, you don't want teens to go away with that message that that's the right thing to do," Redmon said.
Oklahoma was ranked fourth in the country for the number of women killed by men. In the first 57 days of the year, there have already been 17 domestic-violence related homicides, one every 3.3 days.
"We just know that it's not going to get any better," Redmon said. "We're seeing an increase in the number of crisis calls coming in."
She says a lot of the calls are a direct result of the bad economy, mostly after someone loses a job.
"If you already have that tendency going on and you lose your job or miss a few paychecks or whatever it is, that's just the sometimes stress factor that sort of pushes that cycle back into motion," Redmon said.
If you or someone you know is threatened by domestic violence, you can call the DVIS crisis hotline at (918) 7-HELPME.