In 2011, 47 percent of murders in South Dakota were related to domestic violence. Last year, Sioux Falls police and Minnehaha County authorities responded to over 1,300 reports of domestic violence.
With October being Domestic Violence Awareness month, local organizations are trying to raise awareness of this ongoing problem.
While domestic abuse is a continuous problem, groups like the Children's Inn of Sioux Falls try to help people get out of dangerous situations. Even those who aren't being physically abused can find refuge.
"It affects everybody in the family. Even if those children are not being physically abused, they are being emotionally abused by witnessing that or being in a home where there is all that stress and tension and violence," Children's Inn Operations Director, Amy Carter said.
Though the name may be deceiving, the free services at Children's Inn are for people of all ages. There are 34 beds available at the Inn, but even if it's full no one is turned away.
Carter, says seeking help is a big first step.
"Often times when someone is being abused in a relationship, it takes them 7 to 9 times before they leave for good. They might reach out at different times in their life, but often times they get pulled back into that relationship because of those dynamics of power and control," Carter said.
Carter says being able to recognize abuse in your own life, or a loved ones', is a big part of raising awareness.
Right now, red cutout figures are spread across town with stories of domestic violence victims.
And the upcoming "Take Back the Night" event lets the abused know they aren't alone.
"Education is huge. If people know about the warning signs of domestic violence or the resources that are out there, then they can hopefully reach out to those. If it's themselves that's being abused or certainly refer their family and friends to those resources as well," Carter said.
"Take Back the Night" will be held this Thursday at 6:00 p.m. in front of the Old Courthouse Museum.
You can find more information at the Downtown Sioux Falls website.