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Police “Do Not Know Gender” In Many Domestic Abuse Reports

Police officers have failed to record the gender discriminated against in thousands of domestic abuse cases leading to fears that any attempts to reduce the crime are in vain.

Statistics revealed that in 2014/15, the gender of 13% of domestic abuse victims was recorded as ‘missing’ on databases, with the issue failing to improve in recent years. Indeed, the number of cases without a gender being identified rose by 5% in comparison to 2012/13 before the centralised Police Scotland force came into existence.

In almost one-fifth of cases in the last financial year, the force did not know the gender of one of either the victim or the perpetrator. Many critics have stated that this will result in an ineffective campaign if they try and reduce the number of domestic abuse incidents and assaults in Scotland.

Reducing Violence and Domestic Abuse

The Scottish Government and Police Scotland were criticised over figures regarding domestic abuse. Ruth Davidson, leader of the Scottish Conservative Party who obtained the statistics said: “Domestic violence is no respecter of age, class, gender or sexuality. If we are to properly tackle it in our communities, we need to know who the victims and perpetrators are.

“We know there is a hidden issue of domestic violence in same sex relationships, as well as violence by women against men. All victims need to feel confident in their ability to come forward.

“Domestic abuse is a serious problem in Scotland and it’s vital we have an accurate picture of what’s happening to help develop a targeted response.”.

Chief Superintendent Barry McEwan, head of Police Scotland’s Licensing and Violence Reduction Unit, said that tackling domestic violence was a priority for the force. He said that in 2014/15, more incidents were reported with detection rates at more than 82%.

He said: “Police Scotland continue to work with partner agencies across the country to ensure that victims receive the highest quality of service throughout the criminal justice process and beyond.

“We do record and classify domestic abuse incidents by the sex of the victim. Data collection is no reflection on the level of investigation or the quality of service provided to victims or witnesses.”

A Scottish Government spokeswoman said: “The information missing from the domestic abuse publication is a data issue and does not affect the investigation of any individual cases.

“The Scottish Government is working with Police Scotland with the aim to minimise the quantity of missing data.”

Violent Crime in Scotland

The news comes regarding domestic abuse comes after further damaging figures that showed that violent crimes in Scotland had slightly increased. According to statistics, there were more than 3,300 serious violent offences in Scotland in the last year, a marginal increase of 0.5%.

While some crimes were down, there was an alarming rise in the number of sexual assaults and violent crime. However, Police Scotland insisted that this was due to high-profile sexual abuse scanals encouraging people to come forward.

Criminal Defence Lawyers Glasgow

If you have been accused of carrying an out an assault or charged with domestic abuse or any other criminal charge, our team of criminal defence lawyers can help. Whether you require a police station consultation or legal advice, we can help. Contact our expert solicitors today using our online contact form.