What is a domestic homicide review?
The Domestic Violence, Crime and Victims Act (2004) places a duty on Community Safety Partnerships to carry out a domestic homicide review (DHR) when a person who is aged 16 or over is killed by a relative, household member or an intimate partner (or former partner). The duty also applies in cases of suicide where domestic abuse may have been a cause.
If the person who died is a Royal Greenwich resident, the police will inform the borough’s Community Safety Partnership, known as the Safer Greenwich Partnership, which is made up of the Council, police and other agencies that work together to protect the borough from crime and help people feel safer. The Safer Greenwich Partnership will initiate the review by appointing an Independent Chair and a review panel of representatives from relevant services.
What's the purpose of a domestic homicide review?
The objective of a DHR is to enable lessons to be learned. To prevent such tragedies happening again, professionals and organisations need to have a clear understanding about what happened in each homicide. The DHR considers the support the victim may have received from local professionals and organisations like the Council, police, domestic abuse and health services. The DHR will make recommendations to help professionals and organisations work better together when safeguarding victims and to identify and implement changes within policies and procedures to improve their overall responses to domestic abuse.
Domestic homicide reviews are not inquiries into how the victim died or who is to blame — that is a matter for coroners and criminal courts to determine.
The report from a DHR must be approved by a quality assurance panel established by the Home Office before it is published. The aim in publishing the reports is to restore public confidence and improve transparency of the processes in place across all agencies to protect victims. In cases where publishing the report might create a risk to the welfare of anyone directly concerned in the review, a decision may be made not to publish it or to publish instead a summary version.
WARNING: these documents may include references to incidents of domestic abuse which some may find upsetting, reader discretion is advised.