New powers to support domestic violence victims in Cornwall and Devon
Police in Devon and Cornwall have new powers to help and support victims of domestic abuse.
When violence as occurred or threatened towards a victim or their children and there are unlikely to be any criminal charges, police may authorise a Domestic Violence Protection Notice whilst the perpetrator is in custody.
According to The Cornishman, the notice protects the victim from violence or a threat of violence by:
1. Prohibiting the perpetrator from evicting or excluding the victim and their children from their premises
2. Prohibiting the perpetrator from entering the premises
3. Requiring the perpetrator to leave the premises or
4. Prohibiting the perpetrator from going within such a distance of the premises as specified in the notice.
After the notice has been issued, within the following 24 hours police are then able to apply to the court for a Domestic Violence Protection order which will mean the same prohibitions can last between fourteen to 28 days.
Detective Chief Inspector John Trott from the Devon and Cornwall Public Protection Unit said: “This is another fantastic tool in addition to the Clare’s Law legislation from March 2014 and a new strategy for policing perpetrators of domestic violence. We have incidents of domestic violence that are reported to us but on occasions there is insufficient evidence to bring a charge. In the past, the suspect has then been released from custody, often without any restrictions on their movement. Under the new scheme if there is concern that a partner has been the subject of violence or the threat of violence and that risk remains a 48 hour Domestic Violence Protection Notice can be authorised by a Superintendent before a suspect leaves custody.”
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