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Evaluating a Multi-Disciplinary Response to Domestic Violence: The DVERT Program in Colorado Springs, Final Report

NCJ Number
Date Published
August 2001
107 pages
This study examined the Colorado Springs Police Department’s Domestic Violence Enhanced Response Team (DVERT).
Over the past 20 years the Colorado Springs Police Department has received over 15,000 calls for service annually for domestic violence. In response to this the department created a non-traditional domestic violence unit called DVERT. This evaluation included examination of case files from 1996 to 2000, observations of DVERT activities, interviews with members of DVERT, and interviews with victims of domestic violence. It was found that DVERT philosophy and activities differed from the traditional police response to domestic violence. The team follows a multidisciplinary approach with 25 partner agencies that work together to keep the victim safe from harm. Police officers and detectives, victim advocates, prosecutors, child service providers, probation officers, and health care professionals intervene when serious domestic violence cases occur. Interventions include contacts with victims by police and advocates; counseling of victims, batterers, and children; arrests; support in court; and a full range of family services. As a result, these activities have provided better services for victims and their children, more awareness of domestic violence issues by the criminal justice system, the perception of a reduction in violence, and a high level of cooperation and collaboration among city and county agencies. 34 references, 3 appendices

Date Published: August 1, 2001