Figures show 25 per cent rise in domestic abuse

Reports of domestic abuse across Northamptonshire have increase by a quarter over the last five years, the latest Government figures have revealed.

The statistics, which have been released by the Home Office, show 9,586 reports of domestic violence were recorded in 2007/08.

That increased by 25 per cent to 11,898 reports last year.

Northamptonshire Police say dealing with domestic violence remains one of the force’s key priorities, as part of Operation Challenge.

Assistant Chief Constable Andy Frost said rising levels of domestic violence could be down to victims feeling more confident in their ability to report problems.

He said: “Because it happens behind closed doors it is very, very difficult for us to prevent domestic violence. For us, if people report it, it is about trying to make sure they don’t become repeat victims.”

Mr Frost said high-priority victims were identified and offered help by dedicated teams, while officers were tasked with encouraging people to report abuse at an early stage.

He added: “We have quite a sophisticated plan around repeat victims.

“We are trying to do more around raising awareness about trying to stop people becoming victims of domestic violence but our primary role is to stop people from becoming repeated victims. That is about trying to make sure we deal with victims properly, deal with the offender in the appropriate way and to identify the high risk victims. What we are concerned about is a domestic abuse victim could potentially become a murder victim, so we have to do all we can to help them.”

Assistant Chief Constable Andy Frost said he wanted victims to report domestic abuse to police at an early stage.
He said: “One report of domestic abuse is one report too many. But what I don’t want a victim to do is to not report it. 
“I would rather people felt safe to report it to us and us then be able to do something about it.”
Police say about 30 per cent of violent crime is attributed to domestic incidents. PCC Adam Simmonds wants to reduce violent crime by 40 per cent.