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Domestic Violence

Volume 476: debated on Monday 2 June 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many persons were convicted of domestic abuse offences in (a) A District Command Unit area, (b) B District Command Unit area and (c) Northern Ireland in each of the last 10 years; and what average sentence was imposed. (207755)

At present specific information on domestic assaults is not included in court conviction and sentencing data. It is not possible, therefore, to separate domestic violence from other violent offences.

It is, however, possible to give the number convicted of offences which, by their definition, relate to domestic violence. Specifically for the requested policing districts these are: 'breach of non-molestation order' and 'breach of occupation order'. Conviction and sentencing data for these offences are documented in Tables 1 and 2 for Policing District A, Tables 3 and 4 for Policing District B and Tables 5 and 6 for Northern Ireland. An additional domestic violence offence of "breach of exclusion requirement' is documented in Table 7 for Northern Ireland.

A wider range of information on the incidence and impact of domestic violence is available from the Northern Ireland Crime Survey at:

http://www.nio.gov.uk/experience_of_domestic_violence_findings_from_the_ 2005_northern_ireland_crime_survey.pdf

and from PSNI statistics at:

http://www.psni.police.uk/2._domestic_incidents_and_crimes-5.pdf.

Data are only available from 2000 onwards and the data in the following tables cover the calendar years 2000 to 2006 (the latest available years). Data are collated on the principal offence rule; so only the most serious offence with which an offender is charged is included.

Table 1: Number of convictions, number sentenced to immediate custody and average sentence length (in months) for 'breach of non-molestation order' for Policing District A 2000-06.

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Number of convictions

31

33

21

30

32

32

32

Number sentenced to immediate custody

14

6

1

7

3

3

3

Average sentence length (in months)

2.1

2.2

2.0

4.9

6.0

1.7

1.5

Table 2: Number of convictions, number sentenced to immediate custody and average sentence length (in months) for 'breach of occupation order' for Policing District A 2000-06.

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Number of convictions

2

6

9

3

2

2

2

Number sentenced to immediate custody

0

1

2

1

0

0

0

Average sentence length (in months)

0

3.0

1.0

0.5

0

0

0

Table 3: Number of convictions, number sentenced to immediate custody and average sentence length (in months) for 'breach of non-molestation order' for Policing District B 2000-06.

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Number of convictions

15

16

22

23

37

27

12

Number sentenced to immediate custody

7

0

1

2

3

1

0

Average sentence length (in months)

1.5

0

1.0

2.0

2.3

2.0

0

Table 4: Number of convictions, number sentenced to immediate custody and average sentence length (in months) for 'breach of occupation order' for Policing District B 2000-06.

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Number of convictions

2

1

3

4

6

0

1

Number sentenced to immediate custody

0

0

0

0

1

0

0

Average sentence length (in months)

0

0

0

0

1.0

0

0

Table 5: Number of convictions, number sentenced to immediate custody and average sentence length (in months) for 'breach of non-molestation order' for Northern Ireland 2000-06.

2000

2001

2002

20031

2004

2005

2006

Number of convictions

188

219

236

239

255

253

245

Number sentenced to immediate custody

35

20

17

22

24

24

26

Average sentence length (in months)

2.0

2.2

2.1

3.0

2.4

1.9

2.6

1 Average sentence length in 2003 excludes one sentenced to juvenile justice centre order.

Table 6: Number of convictions, number sentenced to immediate custody and average sentence length (in months) for 'breach of occupation order' for Northern Ireland 2000-06.

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Number of convictions

26

34

48

36

37

25

21

Number sentenced to immediate custody

3

3

3

2

4

3

3

Average sentence length (in months)

3.0

2.3

1.3

1.3

1.5

1.7

2.3

Table 7: Number of convictions, number sentenced to immediate custody and average sentence length (in months) for 'breach of exclusion requirement5 for Northern Ireland 2000-061

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Number of convictions

0

0

1

0

0

0

0

Number sentenced to immediate custody

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

Average sentence length (in months)

0

0

0

0

0

0

0

1 There were no convictions for this offence in Policing Districts A or B