Domestic abusers warned to expect a visit from police this Christmas
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As part of a new month-long domestic abuse campaign, Northamptonshire Police is warning offenders their abusive behaviour will not be tolerated. If the Force receives information they have committed offences, they should expect a knock on the door this Christmas seeking their arrest.
The campaign, launched today (Wednesday, 15 December), has been timed to coincide with an anticipated increase in domestic abuse incidents over the festive period, and has a clear message that this this kind of abuse is never acceptable and that action will be taken.
The Force is working round the clock to keep people safe and will respond robustly to domestic abuse incidents. It has operational plans in place to arrest suspected offenders and pursue prosecution.
Officers are currently working through a ‘most wanted’ list of those responsible for high-harm domestic abuse, stalking and harassment, and will publically name and circulate photographs unless the individuals voluntarily come forward for questioning.
Detective Chief Inspector Mark Hopkinson from the Force’s Domestic Abuse Team (DAT), said: “Tackling domestic abuse is a matter of priority for this Force – regardless of whether it’s Christmas. However, incidents are known to increase during the festive season and that’s why the DAT has been set the task of arresting the county’s most wanted offenders.
“We owe it to the victims to do everything in our power to protect them. The tactic of publicising the most wanted has worked very successfully in the past, with many offenders handing themselves in at police stations across the county.
“Previously, some offenders expressed discomfort about having their photos circulated in the media, so I strongly urge those who don’t want their name and photo circulated to voluntarily hand themselves in for questioning now, so their details can be removed from the list.”
Scheduled to run until mid-January, the aim of the campaign is not only to warn and target offenders but also to encourage victims not to suffer in silence and to report domestic abuse incidents. There are a wide range of services across the county that can provide support and information and help victims end the abuse they are experiencing.
Detective Superintendent Rich Tompkins, Head of Public Protection, said: “We want families to have a safe and peaceful Christmas. No-one should have the fear of abuse or violence hanging over them, which is why we are warning perpetrators to change their behaviours or we will come after them.
“Domestic abuse can be physical or psychological and affects women, men and children, from all walks of life. It has no place in our society and shouldn’t be tolerated, which is why the Force has made it a priority. It is important that anyone suffering from domestic abuse knows the police are here working to keep people safe.
“We work closely with statutory and voluntary agencies to ensure anyone who suffers domestic abuse gets the help they need, to highlight the issue of domestic abuse and to explore ways in which we can protect our community.
“I want to encourage anyone suffering from domestic abuse to call their local police on the non-emergency 101 or, in an emergency, always call 999. Throughout last year’s festive period we made over 10 arrests per day for domestic abuse within Northamptonshire, demonstrating our clear commitment to take action and help victims.”
To access a perpetrator programme, contact Respect – the national association for domestic violence perpetrator programmes and associated support services.
If you're a victim of domestic abuse, or know someone who is and there's an emergency that's ongoing or life is in danger, call 999 now. If you're deaf or hard of hearing, use our textphone service 18000 or text us on 999 if you’ve pre-registered with the emergencySMS serviceExternal Link.
In non-emergency cases and for general advice, please call 101. If you're deaf or hard of hearing, use our textphone service on 18001 101.
You can also call the national 24-hour domestic abuse helpline on 0808 2000 247.