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  1. #1
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    O/R wants to know (domestic arrests)

    O/R wants to know: do you think that arrest should be mandatory in domestic violence cases?
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    No. Domestic violence victims who don't want the person whose income keeps the family from starvation and homelessness arrested will be afraid to call police if they know that arrest is mandatory. Also victims who hit back in self defense may be afraid that they themselves will be arrested as well, and not call police. And sometimes the domestic violence (e.g. one person shoves another) really isn't so bad that an arrest is better for the family than just preventing the situation from escalating, scaring the violent family member into not being violent in the future, getting someone to leave the home so tempers can cool, or giving one or both parties advice and info about legal aid, social workers, shelters, job and housing assistance, etc. that might help them get out of a bad domestic situation. But if arrest is mandatory then LEOs might feel obligated to arrest to avoid getting in trouble even for something really minor (parent spanking a child, small wife shoves large husband but leaves no marks or injuries, etc.). Better to give the LEOs (and victims) some room for discretion about what whether arresting someone would be the best solution to the underlying problems that caused police to be called.

  3. #3
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    Yes and no. I think that in the case of a verbal threat, then no. But I feel that if there was any form of a physical altercation, then yes. Here, we end up making arrests for verbal threats out of fear of litigation. If we don't make the arrest (even when the vi does not want us to, either), and the one who made the threat commits some act of violence on the other, then I as an officer, and the dept can be sued. Therefore, even if he/she says I'm gonna kill you to another domestic member, we make an arrest to CYA.

    But if the situation did actually get physical, I believe that the arrest should be made, regardless of what the victim wants. Once the situation in the household turns to physical violence, it never goes back to just verbal, and usually escalates.

    We are allowed to make a dv arrest for the simple reason that the victim has just been stabbed/shot/bludgeoned and does not want the other person to go to jail. The next time they could be dead (eventually if things aren't stopped). If you don't want the other person to go to jail, then don't call the police. We are not referees for a UFC fight.

    To that end, I detest that the vi is allowed to walk into court and drop the charges on the S.O.B. that caved her face in last month because they've "worked things out and he promises he'll never hit me again". My irritation comes from the fact that this city and the DA's office act all high and mighty when it comes to prosecuting DV, so if I don't make an arrest, I can get in trouble for the aforementioned above. But the DA's office is allowed to nolle prosse the case, and if the defendant goes home that night and kills the vi, the courts don't get into any trouble whatsoever. It's assanine and hypocritical.
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  4. #4
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    I think you have summed it up pretty well. That seems to be the case every where I have worked.
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  5. #5
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    No.


    Some domestics can be handled more appropriately by mediating/separating or even leaving both of them on scene. Each situation is different.

    I do though think that law enforcement should have the ability to make an arrest even with an unwilling victim.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by McCrackhd View Post
    Yes and no. I think that in the case of a verbal threat, then no. But I feel that if there was any form of a physical altercation, then yes. Here, we end up making arrests for verbal threats out of fear of litigation. If we don't make the arrest (even when the vi does not want us to, either), and the one who made the threat commits some act of violence on the other, then I as an officer, and the dept can be sued. Therefore, even if he/she says I'm gonna kill you to another domestic member, we make an arrest to CYA.

    But if the situation did actually get physical, I believe that the arrest should be made, regardless of what the victim wants. Once the situation in the household turns to physical violence, it never goes back to just verbal, and usually escalates.

    We are allowed to make a dv arrest for the simple reason that the victim has just been stabbed/shot/bludgeoned and does not want the other person to go to jail. The next time they could be dead (eventually if things aren't stopped). If you don't want the other person to go to jail, then don't call the police. We are not referees for a UFC fight.

    To that end, I detest that the vi is allowed to walk into court and drop the charges on the S.O.B. that caved her face in last month because they've "worked things out and he promises he'll never hit me again". My irritation comes from the fact that this city and the DA's office act all high and mighty when it comes to prosecuting DV, so if I don't make an arrest, I can get in trouble for the aforementioned above. But the DA's office is allowed to nolle prosse the case, and if the defendant goes home that night and kills the vi, the courts don't get into any trouble whatsoever. It's assanine and hypocritical.
    ^^^^ This!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by McCrackhd View Post
    Yes and no. I think that in the case of a verbal threat, then no. But I feel that if there was any form of a physical altercation, then yes. Here, we end up making arrests for verbal threats out of fear of litigation. If we don't make the arrest (even when the vi does not want us to, either), and the one who made the threat commits some act of violence on the other, then I as an officer, and the dept can be sued. Therefore, even if he/she says I'm gonna kill you to another domestic member, we make an arrest to CYA.

    But if the situation did actually get physical, I believe that the arrest should be made, regardless of what the victim wants. Once the situation in the household turns to physical violence, it never goes back to just verbal, and usually escalates.

    We are allowed to make a dv arrest for the simple reason that the victim has just been stabbed/shot/bludgeoned and does not want the other person to go to jail. The next time they could be dead (eventually if things aren't stopped). If you don't want the other person to go to jail, then don't call the police. We are not referees for a UFC fight.

    To that end, I detest that the vi is allowed to walk into court and drop the charges on the S.O.B. that caved her face in last month because they've "worked things out and he promises he'll never hit me again". My irritation comes from the fact that this city and the DA's office act all high and mighty when it comes to prosecuting DV, so if I don't make an arrest, I can get in trouble for the aforementioned above. But the DA's office is allowed to nolle prosse the case, and if the defendant goes home that night and kills the vi, the courts don't get into any trouble whatsoever. It's assanine and hypocritical.
    Similar situations here, but a lot of our frustration is with the Prosecutor's office. They reduce the good, valid DV's to a Disorderly or drop them entirely, and then take the chickenshit ones that even we didn't want to make an arrest, but had to, to trial.
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  8. #8
    Jenna's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pudge View Post
    Similar situations here, but a lot of our frustration is with the Prosecutor's office. They reduce the good, valid DV's to a Disorderly or drop them entirely, and then take the chickenshit ones that even we didn't want to make an arrest, but had to, to trial.
    That sounds so random. Why do they do that?

  9. #9
    Pudge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jenna View Post
    That sounds so random. Why do they do that?

    Wish we knew. I can only guess the ones that go to trial happen to be the only ones that they actually read the report.
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  10. #10
    Jenna's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pudge View Post
    Wish we knew. I can only guess the ones that go to trial happen to be the only ones that they actually read the report.

  11. #11
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    We can't make arrest that easy. Most of our domestic disputes end up in trying to separate both parties for the night our day so that they can cool down.
    If there is a obvious threat we can make an arrest and hold him/her for 12 hours but in most cases we can't arrest. Then you sometimes get hours of discussion who will leave the house for a while because you know that if you leave them together you can come back the whole shift.

    I'm not sure but is it so in the US that someone has to do a complaint otherwise the suspect can not go to trial ? For instance someone got beaten and he wants to do a complaint. You act the complaint and two days later the victim comes to say he wants to withdraw his complaint. Does the suspect still goes to trial then ?

    With us victims can not withdraw there complaint. We can take note from the fact that the victim does not want judicial proceedings but they will still have to go to court.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by keno46 View Post
    We can't make arrest that easy. Most of our domestic disputes end up in trying to separate both parties for the night our day so that they can cool down.
    If there is a obvious threat we can make an arrest and hold him/her for 12 hours but in most cases we can't arrest. Then you sometimes get hours of discussion who will leave the house for a while because you know that if you leave them together you can come back the whole shift.

    I'm not sure but is it so in the US that someone has to do a complaint otherwise the suspect can not go to trial ? For instance someone got beaten and he wants to do a complaint. You act the complaint and two days later the victim comes to say he wants to withdraw his complaint. Does the suspect still goes to trial then ?

    With us victims can not withdraw there complaint. We can take note from the fact that the victim does not want judicial proceedings but they will still have to go to court.
    Technically we can go to court without the victim, realistically, the prosecutor won't.
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