No hiding place

No hiding place for domestic abusers says Tayside police chief

Third-party reporting has led to an upsurge in reported cases of domestic abuse.

Chief Superintendent Paul Anderson, commander of Police Scotland’s
Tayside Division, said one of his main focuses will be to protect
people from violence, whether at home or in public spaces.

He said he believes domestic violence is still under-reported but
third-party reporting means police will be able to pursue offenders even
if their victims are too afraid to come forward.

He said: “Because it’s in a private space, domestic violence was an
offence that was hugely under-reported and I do believe it is still
under-reported.

“Positive efforts are now being made in terms of the police being
proactive when dealing with offenders. So when evidence is sought it
doesn’t necessarily have to come from the victim, the survivors. It can
come from other areas.

“One of the biggest areas that really helps is third party reporting.
Victims haven’t always wanted to come to police for fear of what might
happen. There are now mechanisms in place through voluntary
organisation, through health, through the socials services, through when
people attend casualty  with injuries reports are made to the police
and social services, not directly from 999 or 101 calls.

“We are getting more reporting, having more positive action against
individuals and perpetrators bringing them into the criminal justice
system… but now there is an increase also of reporting historic offences
which is showing to use and victims are now telling us they have more
confidence in the system, that we will do something, we will assist,
protect them, their wider families and take them seriously.

“With that greater confidence, the historic reporting is coming through.”

Chief Supt Anderson said he also wants to ensure city and town
centres in Tayside are safe places for visitors and residents alike.

He said this this will involve working with licensees to prevent problems arising in the first place.

“What you don’t want to do is you don’t want to prevent people having
a good time but certainly as the commanders it’s my responsibility that
people can come to Dundee, walk across the city centre, walk across any
part of the city and not be in fear of getting hurt or injured.”

Chief Supt Anderson added open space and domestic violence were two
of the main issues that have been raised through Police Scotland’s Your
View survey, which can be completed online via the Police Scotland
website.

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