Police launch crackdown on domestic abuse amid fears that offences will spike during the European Championships
Running until Sunday July 11, the campaign “aims to encourage reporting and signpost victims to help and support, while sending out a strong message to perpetrators”
Police are launching a crackdown on domestic abuse amid fears that offences will spike locally as well as nationally as the European Championships kick off tonight (Friday).
The high-profile clampdown is being launched across the region as Northamptonshire Police warned: “Sadly, there is an unacceptable link between football tournaments and domestic violence.”
The special police mission is going ahead as the force said that domestic abuse offences climbed locally by almost 10 per cent during the 2018 World Cup and 2016 Euros.
Running until Sunday July 11, the campaign “aims to encourage reporting and signpost victims to help and support, while sending out a strong message to perpetrators”.
“If you commit domestic abuse you could end up missing the match as there’ll be a knock on the door from an officer and a warrant for your arrest,” declared police.
“As part of the campaign, officers are currently working through a ‘most-wanted’ list of those responsible for high-harm domestic abuse, stalking and harassment.
“As football fever takes hold, it isn’t a beautiful game for those living in fear of abuse.
“Analysis indicates that during both the most recent World Cup and Euro football competitions, domestic abuse rose by nearly 10 per cent in the county.”
The force’s specialist Domestic Abuse Team has been set the task of arresting the most-wanted offenders and will be using extra resources put in place for the Euros to help them achieve this.
Additional investigators will be on duty before and after each match to deal with more prisoners as domestic abuse supervisors act as advisers.
Det Supt Rich Tompkins, the head of Public Protection at Northamptonshire Police, said: “Two weeks ago the chief constable launched his four ‘matters of priority’, of which domestic abuse is one.
“We received huge public support for our domestic abuse campaign during Christmas 2020.
“This led to the arrest of over 300 domestic abuse suspects in December alone, some of whom had been wanted for several weeks.
“In order to try and keep people safe we want to replicate this focus over what is unfortunately likely to be a busy period in the next few weeks.”
The senior detective added: “Domestic abuse is an abhorrent crime which has no place in our society, during football tournaments or any other time of the year.
“It can be physical or psychological and affects women, men and children, from all walks of life.
“Nobody should have to live in fear of it happening to them.
“We work closely with statutory and voluntary agencies to ensure anyone who suffers domestic abuse gets the help they need and we are continually exploring ways in which we can better protect our communities.
“Our role is prevention, protection and prosecution - to prevent further violence, to protect the victim, children and other vulnerable people and to facilitate the prosecution of offenders.
“We want anyone impacted by domestic abuse to know there is help out there.
“I want to encourage anyone suffering from domestic abuse within Northamptonshire to call us via 101 or, in an emergency, ring 999.”
You can find support helplines here: https://www.northants.police.uk/advice/advice-and-information/daa/domestic-abuse/support-helplines/England will open their account at the Euros as they face Croatia at Wembley at 2pm on Sunday (June 13).