New Hartford Police announced over the weekend the arrest of a 25-year-old Utica man on charges related to a domestic dispute.

Law enforcement agencies across the state have seen an increase in the amount of domestic disputes while many families are staying locked down at home.

New Hartford Police say on Friday afternoon Lemeke Pittman was arrested after officers were called to the New Hartford Hotel by a third party just before 4 p.m.

Police say they gathered information about the incident, including the fact that the suspect had fled the scene on foot. Police also say they learned the suspect was physical with his girlfriend inside their hotel room.

Pittman was later located by police in a wooded area and taken into custody, according to New Hartford Police. He is facing the following charges:

Harassment in the Second Degree (Violation)
Unlawful Imprisonment in the Second Degree (Class A Misdemeanor)
Criminal Contempt in the First Degree (Class E Felony)
Strangulation in the Second Degree (Class D Felony)

New Hartford Police say "Pittman was arraigned at Oneida County CAP Court and subsequently released on his own recognizance."

The YWCA Mohawk Valley stated on their website,

Domestic violence doesn’t go away because we are facing a world-wide health pandemic. As the COVID-19 death toll rises, abusers do not soften their verbal, mental, emotional, or physical blows. In fact, the stresses associated with public crisis, possibly becoming infected, financial worries due to loss of income, school closings, cabin fever, etc., can contribute to an environment full of triggers for the abusive partner.

If you are a victim of domestic violence there is help. The YWCA has a number of resources on how to handle this plight and offer several hotlines. In Oneida County, call 315-797-7740. In Herkimer County, for our sexual violence and child advocacy services, call 315-866-4120.