Law Enforcement Survey

1) 2009. Allocate resources to Law Enforcement to implement or increase surveillance on a victim’s residence for domestic violence cases in which the alleged perpetrator is not in custody and multiple lethality/risk factors are present.
2) 2009. Prioritize the processing and execution of domestic violence related warrants and ask victims for information about offender's possible location.
3) 2009. Provide access to technology that will allow Law Enforcement officers to run a criminal history check prior to clearing a call in domestic situations. The ability to do so will help the responding officers to put the incident in context, determine the appropriate response, provide accurate information for a lethality/risk assessment and to include the history.
4) 2009. Recognizing that strangulation is a risk factor for domestic homicide, conduct a thorough investigation into allegations of strangulation to support the allegation so that the crime can be charged properly.
5) 2009. When investigating a gun permit application, make specific inquiries regarding pending domestic violence charges and, when those charges are present, in accordance with state statutes, suspend the application process until the conclusion of the domestic violence case.
6) 2010. Develop a policy to regularly conduct warrant checks when responding to domestic violence related calls and serving Orders for Protection.
7) 2010. Law enforcement officers must be provided the tools needed to connect the victim to an on-call advocate while at the scene of a domestic violence call, including a department cell phone and ready access to a language translation service.
8) 2010. Rather than relying on the domestic violence victim to complete and submit a written statement after the conclusion of the police call, officers must be trained on the best practice model of recording the question and answer statement of the victim and gathering relevant evidence- including photographs of the scene and injuries and names and contact.
9) 2010. Require all law enforcement agencies to maintain a formal relationship with a domestic violence intervention agency to provide independent advocacy support and services to victims of domestic violence.
10) 2010. Take electronic threats– those received through text, email, voicemail and social media sites- as seriously as handwritten or verbal threats.
11) 2011. A centralized clearinghouse where law enforcement could deposit and retrieve reports of domestic abuse related behaviors on a given perpetrator, regardless of the jurisdiction in which it occurred, would be beneficial.
12) 2011. Offer education to victims of stalking on how to keep records of the stalker's behavior, like a log of stalking activities, in order to support stalking charges.
13) 2011. Designate damage to property and disorderly conduct charge that are domestic abuse related as such to allow the system to recognize when the alleged crime occurred within the context of abuse.
14) 2011. Existing prohibitions on firearm possession should be universally enforced and law enforcement officers, those who must enforce the laws, should be offered regular education on the relevant statutes and processes for seizing a firearm.
15) 2012. Attempt to interview all witnesses to a domestic assault to enhance evidence-based prosecution. When interviewing children who have witnessed a domestic assault, conduct the interview in an age-appropriate and trauma-informed manner to minimize further trauma.
16) 2012. Consider providing regular officer training on the topics of identifying dissociative responses to trauma at the crime scene or during interviews and sexual assault resources for victims.
17) 2012. Have law enforcement consistently provide referrals to sexual assault programs for people who report being victims of sexual abuse.
18) 2012. Implement changes to NCIC criminal history to improve clarity, completeness, and content; include the name of the victim in domestic violence cases. Having this information can assist the prosecutor in enhancing charges when appropriate.
19) 2012. Offer an opportunity for COPE, or similar immediate response psychiatric team, to meet with victims who are in need of mental health assessment at the crime scene or in the hospital.
20) 2013. Assessing for lethality must combine a validated tool for law enforcement, a protocol for police to put victims DIRECTLY in contact with an advocate, and a plan for what other intervention must be available post arrest
21) 2013. The creation of a statewide database to share arrests, police calls, and Gone on Arrival police reports would serve the need of law enforcement and probation to properly assess the risk that the perpetrator poses to the victim and to the interveners.
22) 2013. We encourage all law enforcement departments to incentivize the use of easily accessible critical incident debriefing services for any officer who witnesses suicides or homicides.
23) 2014. Encourage law enforcement or advocate follow-up with petitioners within 24 hours when the suspect in a Violation of Order for Protection case is gone when police arrive and within a week following the release of a suspect charged with Violation of Order for Protection to ensure that there has been no further violation and that the petitioner is safe.
24) 2017. Identify the use of children- particularly taking and refusing to return a child- in perpetrating abuse as a red flag for escalation.
25) 2018. Create a way for law enforcement to consistently identify and designate tactics of intimate partner abuse occurring in the context of other cases, such as property damage, so that it can be considered in charging of the case, any plea agreements, and probation recommendation, and advocacy services may offer assistance to the identified victim.
26) 2018. In cases where a victim has answered affirmatively to items on the lethality assessment and the alleged perpetrator is not in custody, law enforcement could consider calling on other resources- advocacy agencies, crisis response teams, or community organizations- to address immediate safety needs.