The dangers of responding to domestic violence scenes
Responding to domestic violence calls for service is one of the most volatile and dangerous situations for police officers
By Leischen Stelter, American Military University
In Public Safety
Responding to domestic violence calls for service is one of the most volatile and dangerous situations for police officers. They lead to about 14 percent of officer deaths every year, according to the FBI. Such calls are also one of the most common. Domestic violence constitutes anywhere from 15 to 50 percent of total calls received by police, according to the National Institute of Justice. Given how dangerous and common these situations are, officers must be trained to take enhanced precautions so they understand that anyone present at such a scene can pose a threat.
Fortunately, agencies around the country are improving their domestic violence training programs. For example, on October 11, the Houston Police Department announced it is providing advanced training for its 5,000 officers so they can better respond to sexual assault and domestic violence cases.
What is Domestic Violence?
Domestic violence, now more commonly referred to as intimate partner violence (IPV), is abusive behavior inflicted by one partner in a relationship towards the other. This abuse can be physical, emotional, sexual, psychological, and/or economic in nature, writes Ron Wallace, a criminal justice professor at American Military University (AMU). Many cases start as emotional or psychological abuse and leads to physical and/or sexual abuse.