Police’s festive visit to abusers

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Police in Sussex have a pre-Christmas surprise for more than 40 people who have records for repeated domestic abuse of partners.

They are all receiving visits from officers in plain clothes, working with Independent Domestic Violence Advisers (IDVAs), and will be told that during the holiday period police will be paying particular attention to any incidents reported as involving them, and will take robust action wherever possible, including arrest, issue of Domestic Violence Protection Notices, and recall to prison.

They will also be given contact details for a charity that specialises in advising perpetrators.

Officers and IDVAs will also be visiting more than 150 people who have been repeatedly victims, or who have been reluctant to engage with police following incidents.

And dedicated patrols will be responding to reports of domestic abuse over the festive period, with officers equipped with body-worn video cameras to help secure evidence.

Every evening over the Christmas period teams of uniformed officers will work dedicated shifts to attend incidents of domestic abuse as a priority over all other types of incidents.

Officers working on Operation Ribbon will also being kept up to date by intelligence briefings about the victims who may be particularly vulnerable, and about the specific offenders who may pose a higher risk.

Teams of specialist detectives will carry out follow-up investigations into domestic abuse crimes, aiming to get them to court as swiftly as possible.

Sussex Police say they treat domestic abuse as a priority, especially at Christmas, when the forces experiences a spike in such calls.

The increase over the holiday period is often down to higher alcohol consumption, combined with families spending more time than usual with each other. Relationships which are potentially abusive can come to a head.

Between December 20 2013 and January 1 2014, 979 domestic abuse calls were received by Sussex Police.

For advice and support, visit www.sussex.police.uk or call 101 or 01273 470101. You can also contact the 24 hour National Domestic Violence Helpline on 0808 2000 247 or via www.nationaldomesticviolencehelpline.org.uk