Reporting Family and Domestic Violence


INTERNATIONAL Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women was on 25 November, which also marked the beginning of the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence.

The rate of Domestic and Family Violence experienced in Australia is devastating.

According to Nambucca Valley Detective Chief Inspector Darren Jameson there were 41 incidents investigated in October in the Nambucca Valley, and in November there were 29.

This equates to more than one domestic violence incident a day.

Mr Jameson spoke with News Of The Area about domestic and family violence.

“As a crime we look at the effects it has on the family environment,” he said.

“There is a cycle of violence that can be perpetuated throughout the family, children learn to commit violence and then it can contribute through generations.

“The key is to break the cycle.

“And we can do that.”

Mr Jameson said that females are the likely victims, with children becoming the secondary victims.

News Of The Area asked Mr Jameson about those victims that may be reluctant to report or press charges in relation to a domestic violence incident because they don’t feel confident with the process.

Mr Jameson is aware that some victims may be hesitant with police involvement because of previous negative interactions with the police.

Perhaps nothing had been done when they had reached out before, or perhaps they had witnessed a family member attempting to get help with no success.

He is keen for victims to understand that the police are ready and wanting to help.

“We as police understand that sometimes you are trapped in domestic violence.

“That’s okay, we will still be there to help you whether you feel at that time that you can disclose the extent of the violence that you are suffering or not.

“We will look at everything that is available to us, whether that be independent witnesses , the scene, the version of events, what is recorded on our body-worn cameras.

“Whatever it takes to help you find safety we will utilise.

“That includes referrals to our Safety Action Meeting (SAM).”

A SAM is held for high risk victims, involving a whole of government response and includes NGOs in the sector.

Mr Jameson said, “It is a holistic approach to finding a pathway for victims to be safe.

“It has a very strong correlation helping women escape violence, but also to stop them from being repeat victims of domestic violence.

“It is a very successful tool,” he said.

The Domestic Violence Evidence in Chief (DVEC) is a digital recording of a victim’s evidence given when soon after police arrive.

The DVEC allows the court to see the victim at the moment of the incident, including their emotional state and any injuries.

Mr Jameson encourages victims to say yes to a DVEC.

“It reduces the negative impacts of the course process on the “victim, and we usually get very good results from the courts with DVEC.”

The victim needs to attend court, but does not have to sit and recite evidence.

Mr Jameson is keen for those experiencing domestic violence to know that the police can help them if they want to stay in their premises, locks can be changed, or if necessary leases can be broken to assist in moving away from an unsafe situation.

Police can provide assistance if stalking occurs.

The clear message coming from the Detective Chief Inspector is that police are ready and able to assist at all times.



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