Special police patrols to combat domestic abuse during Christmas



Sussex Police will be carrying out special patrols during the Christmas period to combat domestic abuse.

Officers will be equipped with body-worn video cameras to film evidence as part of Operation Cranberry.

The patrols will run from December 20 to January 1.

Police in Sussex were called to 982 incidents of domestic abuse from December 21 2012 to 2 January 2013, an increase from 643 the previous year.

Detective Inspector Stuart Hale said: “This is the fifth year running that we have operated extra force-wide patrols focusing on high risk victims of domestic abuse as we understand that the festive period can be a particularly difficult time for them. We have historically had peaks in the number of calls for help on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day. Victims can be assaulted or abused by their partners or other family members and many of the incidents the police have attended in the past have been extremely violent.

“The increase over this period is often down to higher alcohol consumption, combined with families spending more time than usual with each other. Relationships which are potentially abusive may come to a head at this time. Our response officers use body worn cameras to increase the chance of gaining quality evidence and therefore do not just rely on the victim’s word against their abuser. There is a lot of support available for victims of domestic abuse and we are encouraging family, friends and neighbours to support victims by reporting this type of abuse to police.

“The patrols are just part of our response to the issue of domestic abuse, alongside our continuing ‘Talk To Me’ campaign, which advises victims how to contact police and report what is happening to them - and if not to police, then to someone else who can help and advise.

“Over the past year we have seen a rising trend in such reports. This is an encouraging development which we want to continue.”


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