Developing a consistent response: the identification and management of serial perpetrators of domestic abuse in England and Wales

Jackson, Zoë (2016) Developing a consistent response: the identification and management of serial perpetrators of domestic abuse in England and Wales. BSc dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    Serial perpetrators of domestic abuse are defined as those who have used or threatened violence or abuse against two or more victims who are unconnected to each other. In 2009, the Association of Chief Police Offices [ACPO] estimated that there may be as many as 25,000 serial domestic abuse perpetrators in contact with police at any one time in the UK, and recommended that specific measures for the identification and management of these individuals be introduced as a priority. Seven years on, there is still no consistent framework that provides for the tracking, monitoring and/or management of this cohort of high-risk, prolific offenders.
    Adopting a qualitative approach, this research examines current policy and practice in this area against a backdrop of continuing calls for a more comprehensive and consistent response. Data was collected from all 43 local police forces in England and Wales, under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, in order to explore the nature and scope of current provision across the study area. Semi-structured interviews were subsequently conducted with 6 key professionals, in order to provide additional context, identify areas of good practice and highlight where further development might be required.
    The results of this research demonstrate a lack of consistency in the approach to serial perpetrators of domestic abuse across England and Wales and evidence slow progress against multiple recommendations for national change. Concerns are raised regarding the geographically-varied nature of current responses, the lack of an overarching national model, and the impact of this in terms of cross-border offender monitoring and management. Ultimately, this research positions the effective identification and management of serial perpetrators as a crucial element of contemporary domestic abuse and public protection work, and calls for swift and decisive change in the way the behaviour of these individuals is addressed going forward.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Institute of Criminal Justice Studies
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 24 Feb 2017 14:16
    Last Modified: 24 Feb 2017 14:16

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