Different Types Of Police Response To Cases Of Domestic Violence According To Minneapolis Experiment

In 1980, in response to an increase in domestic violence incidents, and criticisms by feminist groups on the lack of effective law enforcement practices, the Minneapolis Police Department partnered with the Police Foundation to conduct a study into the effectiveness of various law enforcement responses to domestic violence. Funded by a grant from the National Institute of Justice, the study was conducted over a two-year period with the results being published in 1984 (Gosselin, 2014, p.

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52). The Minneapolis Domestic Violence experiment focused on three different types of police response to cases of domestic violence; the arrest of one or both parties, the counseling of the parties involved, and the separation of the aggressor from the victim (Gosselin, 2014, p. 53).

The findings of the study revealed that the arrest of the aggressor was the most effective in reducing repeated violence to the same victim (Gosselin, 2014, p. 52). In other words, when responding officers make an arrest, the chances of the victim being subjected to repeat violence by the same offender are reduced drastically within a six-month period (Gosselin, 2014, p. 52). Prior to the study, police officers were reluctant in making arrests in domestic violence incidents as problems with victims not following through with the complaint were common (Gosselin, 2014, p. 52). The study revealed that the counseling of the parties involved, as well as the separation of the aggressor from the home for a few hours had little effect on preventing future violence (Gosselin, 2014, p. 53).

There were three recommendations made by researchers based on the results of the study. The first recommendation was obvious enough and that is perpetrators of domestic violence should be arrested.

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The second recommendation suggested that other cities should conduct a similar study to determine what police response is most effective in their jurisdictions, and finally mandatory arrest laws should not be introduced as they would hinder further research (Gosselin, 2014, p. 53). The study eventually led to a change in the Minneapolis Police Department’s policy on police response to domestic violence. Officers were now required to complete a written report detailing their actions on whether an arrest was made or not. Before long, mandatory arrest laws and policies were adopted across the nation to reduce domestic violence, thus taking discretion away from the officers on the scene (Gosselin, 2014, p. 53).

Over the years, the Minneapolis Domestic Violence study led to other studies and research in police department across the nation on the best law enforcement practices of handling domestic violence. The results were inconsistent as in some cases the arrest of the individual escalated future violence on the victim (Gosselin, 2014, p. 53). This led to the recognition that law enforcement alone is not well equipped to solve the problem of family violence (Gosselin, 2014, p. 53). Strategies were put in place to promote a partnership between law enforcement and other criminal justice agencies to work closely together to address family violence. Legislation was also introduced that was specific to intimate partner violence that gave officers the power of arrest in all kinds of family violence.

Updated: Feb 02, 2024
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Different Types Of Police Response To Cases Of Domestic Violence According To Minneapolis Experiment. (2024, Feb 07). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/different-types-of-police-response-to-cases-of-domestic-violence-according-to-minneapolis-experiment-essay

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