Devon and Cornwall Police launch new initiative for domestic abuse victims

    Police and Crime Commissioner funds new service for domestic abuse victims

    Devon and Cornwall Police has launched a new approach to help high-risk domestic abuse victims.

    This new strategy has been funded by Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez as part of an innovative pilot in Cornwall and Plymouth.

    A dedicated unmarked vehicle will allow an independent domestic violence advisor or a specialist domestic abuse support worker and a plain clothed police officer to be deployed together to any domestic abuse incident.

    This project aims to build victims' confidence so police have a better chance of taking formal action and bringing offenders to justice.

    The aim of this new approach to tackling domestic violence is to deliver an immediate response to incidents of domestic abuse at the most critical point providing the best support to the victim, whilst at the same time enabling officers to gather quality evidence of offences and to provide a thorough risk assessment. 

    Police and Crime Commissioner Alison Hernandez, said: "We have invested significantly in this project because I feel it is essential to get the right support to victims of domestic abuse and sexual violence at the right time.

    "Police officers have seen how effective this approach is in tackling domestic abuse in other police forces throughout the country. Our aim is to protect any victim of domestic abuse from further harm and to bring offenders to justice."

    The unmarked car will work at between 4pm and 2am Friday's and Saturdays. One will be based in Newquay and the other based at Charles Cross police station in Plymouth city centre. 

    In its first two weekends the team attended eight incidents across Plymouth and Cornwall. 

    At one incident in Plymouth, the victim did not engage with the response officers who arrived on scene first, but the safeguarding team were able to take a statement and complete a full risk assessment

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