Domestic abuse criminal charges up 25% to 7,600

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James Cox

The number of criminal charges in domestic abuse cases increased by 24 per cent to 7,600 last year.

New figures show gardaí received 43,000 calls to respond to incidents of domestic abuse — an increase of 16 per cent on 2019.

There was also a 25 per cent rise in the number of criminal charges brought for breaches of domestic abuse court orders, to just over 4,000.

Three convictions for coercive control were made in 2020. This included: one Circuit Court conviction by Jury following trial, one Circuit Court Conviction on plea of guilty and one District Court conviction on a plea of Guilty.

Amid Level 5 Covid-19 restrictions, gardaí have also emphasised that travel restrictions do not apply in the case of domestic violence or to escape a risk of harm, whether to the person or to another person.


A Garda spokesman said: “Operation Faoiseamh commenced on April 1st, 2020, with the goal of providing enhanced proactive support to victims of domestic abuse.

“As a result of Operation Faoiseamh 23,785 contacts and attempted contacts were made with victims of domestic abuse.

“In addition An Garda Síochána policy is that following each Incident of Domestic Abuse reported to An Garda Síochána that the victim of that abuse is contacted by An Garda Síochána within seven days.

“Operation Faoiseamh forms part of An Garda Síochána’s community engagement response to Covid-19. The Garda National Protective Service Bureau (GNPSB) is overseeing the implementation of this proactive initiative, which was launched with the aim of ensuring that victims of domestic abuse were supported and protected during this extraordinary time.

“An Garda Síochána encourages any victim of abuse or any person who knows of a family member or friend who is a victim of such abuse, make contact with An Garda Síochána, that information is important to us

“Any person who requires urgent assistance or support, is asked to call 999 or 112, An Garda Síochána is there to listen to help and to protect.”

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