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CPS committed to prosecution of domestic abuse in cases without support of victim

|News, Hate crime

The North East’s Chief Crown Prosecutor (CCP) has spoken today of her continuing commitment to the prosecution of domestic abuse, even in cases that don’t have the support of the victim.

CCP Jan Lamping highlighted some recent successes in the prosecution of domestic abuse, including a number  of evidence-led prosecutions which were prosecuted without the victims’ support.

Jan said: “The effects of domestic abuse can be devastating. In many cases, we often deal with victims who are particularly vulnerable by virtue of the situation they find themselves in. For this reason, police and prosecutors can find it difficult to gain the support of the victim in prosecuting those responsible.

“I would hope that our recent successes demonstrate our commitment to prosecuting domestic abuse, even when the victim is unable to support this. Where it is in the public interest to do so, our prosecutors will draw on all other available evidence to build a robust case against the perpetrators of domestic abuse.“

Below are some examples of domestic abuse cases recently successfully prosecuted by CPS North East, notwithstanding the COVID-19 pandemic:

  • The Defendant was convicted of Harassment without violence after repeatedly attending his parents' address at all hours of the day and night against their wishes, banging on doors and windows and causing a disturbance.  On the day of trial the prosecution intended to proceed on the basis of 999 calls and body-worn video footage, without the victim giving live evidence, whereupon the defendant pleaded guilty. He was sentenced to a 12-month Community Order with unpaid work and rehabilitation activities and given a 12-month restraining order.
  • An evidence-led prosecution based on 999 call and body-worn video footage without the evidence of the victim led to the conviction of a defendant for common assault on his partner and obstructing a police officer. The defendant was sentenced to a conditional discharge for 18 months.
  • The Defendant was convicted on the evidence of an independent witness of assault by beating for grabbing the victim in the street and knocking her to the ground. He was sentenced to 16 weeks' imprisonment, suspended for two years, with unpaid work, rehabilitation activities and a requirement to attend a building better relationships course.
  • The Defendant was convicted of breaching a restraining order, assault causing actual bodily harm and criminal damage after he repeatedly contacted the victim, gained entry to her address and assaulted her in her home. He was sentenced to 64 weeks' imprisonment when the court activated a suspended sentence order as well as sentencing for the current offending. The restraining order was extended by a further three years.
  • The defendant was convicted of theft of money in excess of £30,000 from his disabled sister to meet his gambling debts. He was sentenced at the Crown Court to 16 months' imprisonment, suspended for two years, with rehabilitation activities and a six-month curfew. £6,000 compensation was ordered to be paid.
  • The Defendant was convicted of a series of breaches of a restraining order by sending social media messages to the victim. He was sentenced to four weeks' custody for each breach and an existing suspended sentence order was activated, resulting in a total of 32 weeks' imprisonment.
  • The Defendant was convicted of Affray after he held an air pistol to the head of the victim during an argument. He was sentenced to a 12-month imprisonment, suspended for two years, with rehabilitation activities, a curfew and unpaid work. A restraining order was made for two years.
  • The Defendant was convicted of criminal damage and assault after he damaged a sofa and a collection of photographs with a knife in the family home in front of his children causing them to fear for their safety. He was sentenced to ten weeks' imprisonment, ordered to pay compensation of £110 and made the subject of a two-year restraining order in respect of the family.

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