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Judges need information and tools to both guide them in holding perpetrators of domestic violence accountable for their abusive behavior and to ensure that efforts to reach perpetrators do not cause unintended consequences or further harm to victims of domestic violence and their children.



  • Opens in new windowOffenders Re-entering the Austin Community

    It was clear to even a casual observer that there was a significant homeless population in downtown Austin. But what was not clear was how the community should respond. In analyzing the problem, community prosecutor Eric McDonald discovered, almost by accident, that the homeless population included a number of recently-released inmates.

  • Opens in new windowDomestic Violence Courts: A Multisite Test of Whether and How They Change Offender Outcomes

    This article reports findings from an investigation of 24 criminal domestic violence courts across New York State. Overall, the 24 courts achieved a modest positive impact in reducing recidivism among convicted domestic violence offenders. The 24 domestic violence courts also increased conviction rates and sentences involving jail or prison among male domestic violence defendants. Of final interest, court policies specifically designed to increase victim safety, hold offenders accountable, and reduce offender recidivism (through deterrence or rehabilitation) were instrumental in reducing recidivism.

  • Opens in new windowIn Practice: Taking a Holistic Approach with Domestic Violence Offenders

    Domestic violence cases present challenges to probation departments. Supervising and monitoring offenders requires an understanding not only of the dynamics of domestic violence but the crime’s impact on the entire community. For this episode of In Practice, Rob Wolf speaks with James Henderson, a former probation officer and a consultant with the Battered Women's Justice Project, and Aeron Muckala, a corrections agent for the Minnesota Department of Corrections in Bemidji, Minnesota. They discuss how probation departments are meeting the challenges of these difficult and often high-risk cases.

  • Opens in new windowImproving Outcomes by Assessing the Impact of Trauma on Offenders

    Courts need to assess offenders for traumatic exposures so they can match them to effective services and improve treatment outcomes, says Kathleen West, an expert on trauma-informed care and lecturer at the University of California. In this New Thinking podcast, West discusses what we know about the impact of trauma on litigants and the justice system.

  • Opens in new windowThe Challenges of Differentiating Among Domestic Violence Offenders

    Ronald B. Adrine the presiding judge of the Cleveland Municipal Court, talks about the challenges presented by domestic violence.