Immediate Arrests Help Reduce Domestic Violence
Immediate arrest of the perpetrator by police in cases of domestic violence reduces the likelihood of new assaults by about 50 percent.
05/02/2023 · News · ifo Institut Leibniz-Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung an der Universität München e. V. · Wirtschafts- und Sozialwissenschaften, Raumwissenschaften · Forschungsergebnis
Immediate arrest of the perpetrator by police in cases of domestic violence reduces the likelihood of new assaults by about 50 percent, finds an ifo Institute study using data from the United Kingdom. “Domestic violence affects one-third of all women worldwide and incurs costs in the billions. Yet, the issue of how to effectively stop domestic violence and prevent it from recurring is still unresolved despite its common occurrence and severity. Immediate arrests not only provide short-term relief, but also deter repeat offenses in the long term,” says Helmut Rainer, Director of the ifo Center for Labor and Demographic Economics.
Without immediate arrest, one-quarter of suspected offenders will re-offend violently within 96 hours. An arrest prevents almost all of these acts. Moreover, the likelihood of a repeat offense in the following year decreases by half. The study suggests that arrest has a direct impact on decreases in domestic violence, rather than simply causing victims to change their reporting behavior.
The study analyzed 124,000 emergency calls for domestic violence in the West Midlands region, which is centered on the city of Birmingham, for the period 2010–2016. The data includes information on whether the police officers called take a suspected criminal into preliminary custody.
Sofia Amaral, Gordon B. Dahl, Victoria Endl-Geyer, Timo Hener, Helmut Rainer
CESifo, Munich, 2023