The government is considering introducing a law which will create a specific offence of domestic violence.
Beverley Watkins, comments, “It is already a criminal offence to assault another person, we already have offences of assault, GBH etc. The real issue is the way domestic violence is treated by the police and the Courts. The police frequently, despite a woman being covered in bruises and despite the woman saying that her partner assaulted her, do not charge perpetrators of domestic violence, often making ludicrous comments such as, “there is not enough evidence”. Indeed I recently dealt with a case where a woman had photographs of very serious bruising to arms and legs. Some weeks after the event she was still covered in bruises. She had medical reports confirming that she was the victim of a serious assault.
A member of the family had witnessed the assault, she gave a statement to the police and yet, the police chose not to prosecute. In addition, the Courts often view an assault by a partner as somehow a lesser offence than other assaults.
What really is needed a change in the mindset of the police and the Courts. The fact that two women a week die as a result of assault by a partner in the UK is an appalling and shameful statistic and more needs to be done to save women’s lives. Domestic violence, of course, also affects children”.