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Wigan Police Crackdown on Domestic Violence
Tuesday 14th February, 2006

Domestic violence offenders across the Wigan borough are being targeted in a police enforcement campaign to combat violence in the home during February and March.

During the campaign, a team of Wigan and Leigh police officers and domestic violence officers plus two police vehicles will be available from 7pm until 3am, Thursday to Sunday, as well as their usual office hours. According to research, most domestic violence incidents are reported during these times.

The team's role will involve providing a prompt response to domestic violence incidents, using cameras to gather and preserve evidence and providing immediate advice and support for victims at crisis intervention point. The campaign aims to increase the number of arrests at the scene of domestic violence incidents and reduce the number of repeat offences.

Statistics reveal that there is a domestic violence related call to police in the UK every 20 seconds, that victims suffer an average of 35 attacks before seeking help from the police, and that this ugly crime claims the lives of two women every week.

Domestic violence accounts for nearly a quarter of all violent crime and affects men and women of all ages and backgrounds. People who are violent within a relationship are also likely to be violent towards children. Domestic violence has no age boundaries and victims are as likely to be aged 80, as 16 years old. In the majority of cases of domestic violence children are likely to be in the same or next room.

Detective Inspector Alan Lyon is leading the enforcement campaign. He said: "Domestic violence is unacceptable under any circumstances and it will not be tolerated. If you are suffering domestic violence or know someone who is, please get help now. During this campaign, we will have specialist staff working until the early hours of the morning providing victims with immediate support while the perpetrator is taken into police custody."

"We hope this approach will lead to fewer retractions and the investigation can be progressed quickly. I want to send a clear message to domestic violence perpetrators that officers will be doing everything in their power to collect evidence against them."

The initiative has been timed to coincide with the launch of the Home Office's domestic violence awareness campaign, which is due to start across the UK this week.

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