Quantitative and qualitative methods were used to determine how well community policing strategies were implemented in the Portland Police Bureau's Domestic Violence Reduction Unit (DVRU), the methods to assess the effectiveness of these strategies, and the impact of these strategies on domestic assault.
Information came from an analysis of computer records, as well as surveys and structured interviews with victims and domestic violence response representatives. Results revealed that the strategies used reflected the five core values of the agency's community policing model: service orientation, partnership, empowerment, problem-solving, and accountability. In addition, victims' ratings of police performance were positively related to the amount of police attention the victims received. The DVRU officers received significantly higher ratings than did uniformed officers. Moreover, criminal justice personnel agreed that working at partners with the DVRU had succeeded in improving the community response to domestic violence. Furthermore, victims who received DVRU services were more likely to engage in self-help behavior in the form of obtaining restraining orders and were more knowledgeable about obtaining legal help than were victims who did not receive DVRU services. Findings also indicated a significant increase in the number of temporary restraining orders, an increase in the prosecution rate for misdemeanor domestic violence cases, and a tentative finding of less recidivism for cases with DVRU intervention than for those without it. Tables, figure, footnotes, appended instruments, list of strategies, and 18 references
Date Published: January 1, 1995