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      Domestic violence contiues to climb in SC

      COLUMBIA (WACH) -- More than 36,000 cases of domestic violence are reported to police every year in South Carolina.

      Each October the state gets a sobering reminder of that at the annual silent witness ceremony.

      Last year Gloria Stephens learned how quickly domestic violence can turn deadly after a dangerous encounter with her brother in law.

      " He ran their granddaughter around the car, he ran over and killed my husband, he left me for dead and my sister died also," said Gloria Stephens.

      Stephens was the lucky one on that day. She had a leg and a hand amputed but was the only survivor of the attack. Since then she recalls seeing the warning signs of domestic violence.

      "Controlling, isolation from her family and making sure she said everything correctly,"are just a few of the signs Stephens noticed in her former brother in law.

      Nancy Barton is the director of sister care in Columbia and sees the dangers of domestic violence every day. Right now South Carolina ranks second in the country in cases of women killed by men. Barton worries cultural factors may be contributing to the state's domestic violence problem.

      "South Carolina has some very distinct cultural aspects, tradational roles and vaules and we think those are hard to come by to change. She is his, he owns her, she is property to him and no one else can have her," said Barton.Gloria Stephens just wants others to know there is help before its to late.

      "Don't stay silent we're there to help you. I want people that are in families to begin to notice if they feel that their sibiling know please come to me."

      Sistercare offers a 24 hour crisis line for those in need 803-765-9428.