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#WhyIStayed: A Study of IPV Victim Recantation and Non-Cooperation in the Criminal Justice System

Award Information

Award #
Funding Category
Competitive Discretionary
Congressional District
Funding First Awarded
Total funding (to date)

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2017, $406,079)

Victims who recant their statements or do not participate in prosecution present a serious dilemma in up to 80% of intimate partner violence (IPV) criminal cases. Further, recantation and lack of participation adversely impacts criminal conviction rates.

Since 2004 conviction rates for DV have significantly decreased, consistent with a Supreme Court ruling making it more difficult for prosecutors to try IPV cases in the absence of victim testimony.

This application proposes a population-based cohort study of criminal cases of IPV to improve our understanding of the presenting risk factors and resource needs of IPV victim “recanters” and their risk of subsequent IPV following case disposition. The ultimate goal of this inquiry is to better inform understanding of the factors that differentiate victim recanters from their “more cooperative” counterparts, thereby better informing how overall system responses to these victims may be improved. This study will present a fuller spectrum of victims’ needs, disparities, and risk profiles, thereby facilitating provision of more responsive services.

The project anticipates improving client-advocate trust and victim access to and engagement with service providers, including system-based advocates and prosecutors, thereby preventing violence and holding offenders accountable.

This project contains a research and/or development component, as defined in applicable law, and complies with Part 200 Uniform Requirements - 2CFR 200.210(a)(14).

Date Created: September 21, 2017