Almost 200 requests made to Hampshire police from people worried partner has a violent past

NEARLY 200 people have asked police for information about their partners' violent pasts.

Tuesday, 8th March 2016, 10:21 am
Updated Tuesday, 8th March 2016, 5:51 pm

Home Office figures published today show 181 people made applications to Hampshire police under Clare’s Law.

Figures published today show between March 8, 2014 and December 31 in the same year, Hampshire police made 78 disclosures.

It puts the force as having the fourth highest number of applications out of 43 forces outside of four pilot areas.

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Northumbria received 245 applications, Merseyside received 205 and Lancashire had 189.

The scheme - named after Clare Wood, who was murdered by her former boyfriend in Salford 2009 - is a formal process where people can ask about their partner’s past to find if they have a history of violence.

Also known as the domestic violence disclosure scheme, it allows police to pro-actively release information to protect people under certain circumstances.

The four pilot areas ran the scheme for longer so figures are not directly comparable.

They were: Greater Manchester Police (311), Gwent (251), Nottinghamshire (226) and Wiltshire (278).

Nationally between March and December 2014 there were 4,724 applications made with 1,938 disclosures.

Figures have also been released showing how many Domestic Violence Protection Orders (DVPOs) and Domestic Violence Protection Notices

(DVPNs) were issued.

A DVPN is an emergency eviction and non-molestation notice which can be given to perpetrators of abuse by police when officers attend a domestic abuse incident.

Police can apply to the court for a DVPO within 48 hours of issuing a DVPN.

The civil court order can ban a perpetrator from contacting a victim and from going to a home for up to 28 days.

In Hampshire, 47 police-issued DVPNS - authorised by a superintendent - were handed out with 33 DVPOs authorised by courts.

Of these, nine court orders were breached.

The use of these in Hampshire started on May 19, 2014.

Detective Chief Inspector Tim Rowlandson, from Hampshire police, said: ‘Clare’s Law is a vital tool in helping to keep people safe from domestic abuse.

‘It gives victims who are concerned about their partner or prospective partner the chance to find out if they have a history of abuse, and so protect themselves from becoming victims.

‘We welcome that 181 applications were made to Hampshire Constabulary in the first nine months of the legislation coming into effect.

‘We worked hard at the time to publicise the change and help people to understand how it can help them to make informed decisions about the future of their relationships.

‘Clare’s Law gives the public the right to ask for more information about someone suspect of being abusive in a relationship.

‘Every application we receive is carefully reviewed to decide whether disclosure is appropriate in that case.

‘It’s not just about disclosing information however; even where it’s decided that disclosure is not needed we can work with those concerned, give advice and refer to support agencies to help prevent abuse happening in the first place.

‘Since the introduction of the new law we have made many disclosures which have helped a potential victim make informed decisions and stay safe.

‘If you or someone you know is at risk of domestic abuse, you have the right to ask for more information from the police.

‘You can call 101 or visit a police station.’