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Number of domestic violence murder victims soars to a five-year high


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Domestic violence related killings have soared to a five-year high, new figures have revealed.

Data obtained from the 43 police forces in Britain reveal that there were 173 domestic violence victims last year. 

The number has risen from 141 in 2017, 139 in 2016, 160 in 2015 and 165 in 2014, the statistics show.

The new data emerged after Prime Minister Boris Johnson pledged to reintroduce domestic abuse legislation in the next Queen’s Speech. 

Mr Johnson tweeted yesterday: ‘Domestic abuse shatters lives and tears families apart.

This table shows the data obtained from the 43 police forces in Britain reveal that there were 173 domestic violence victims last year –  a five year high

‘We are fully committed to tackling this horrific crime – which is why the Queen’s Speech will confirm we will be reintroducing domestic abuse legislation in the next session.’

Victims this year include Charlotte Huggins, who was the first official homicide of 2019, after she was stabbed to death by her ex boyfriend.

Michael Rolle, 34, attacked her in her south London home with a kitchen knife in a ‘jealous rage.’ 

He fled the scene and later argued Ms Huggins, 33, had fallen on the knife. But he was jailed for life for a minimum of 20 years for her murder in July.

Victims this year include Charlotte Huggins, who was the first official homicide of 2019, after she was stabbed to death by her ex boyfriend.

Charlotte Huggins

 Victims this year include Charlotte Huggins, who was the first official homicide of 2019, after she was stabbed to death by her ex boyfriend

Other victims include Aliny Godinho, 39, who was repeatedly stabbed by her estranged husband Ricardo Godinho in front of their three-year-old daughter on the school run in Stoneleigh, near Epsom in Surrey, on February 8.

He was sentenced to at least 27 years in prison in July after a two-and-a-half week trial at Guildford Crown Court.

Michael Rolle, 34,was found guilty of murdering Charlotte Huggins and sentenced to at least 20 years in prison

Michael Rolle, 34,was found guilty of murdering Charlotte Huggins and sentenced to at least 20 years in prison 

Mary Annie Sowerby, who was stabbed to death by her paranoid schizophrenic son, just days after he was sent home from a mental health unit.

Lee Sowerby, 45, was jailed for life in July after the killing in Dearham, Cumbria on January 22. 

A judge said it was ‘astonishing’ that Sowerby was not allowed to see a doctor six days before the killing when his father, Leonard, took him to a health facility in Workington and pleaded he be put back on medication. 

And in January Margory Villegas was murdered by her husband Rodrigo Giraldo, a former Colombian police officer in front of their newly adopted baby.

After strangling her at their home in Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, he drove her body to a local beauty spot where he set it alight, placed the remains in a suitcase and buried it in a shallow grave.

Sir James Munby, former president of the Family Division of the High Court of England and Wales, has called for the Domestic Abuse Bill to be brought back before Parliament.

He told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme on Thursday: ‘This is a vitally important Bill, tackling what everyone agrees is a very great social evil.

Mary Annie Sowerby and her husband Leonard. She was killed by her son in their home in January

Margory Villegas was murdered by her husband Rodrigo Giraldo,

Mary Annie Sowerby and her husband Leonard. She was killed by her son in their home in January (left). Margory Villegas (right) was murdered by her husband Rodrigo Giraldo

‘It is immensely depressing nothing effective has been done to get this necessary reform through Parliament.’

Sir James added: ‘The Bill must be reintroduced in Parliament as soon as the next session starts.

‘It must then be pursued to the earliest possible conclusion of the parliamentary process with determination, vigour and a real sense of urgent commitment on the part of Government.

Ricardo Godinho, 41

Aliny Godinho, 39

Ricardo Godinho, 41, (left) repeatedly stabbed 39-year-old Aliny Godinho (right) in Stoneleigh, near Epsom in Surrey, on February 8 

The new data emerged after Prime Minister Boris Johnson pledged to reintroduce domestic abuse legislation in the next Queen's Speech

The new data emerged after Prime Minister Boris Johnson pledged to reintroduce domestic abuse legislation in the next Queen’s Speech

‘What the Prime Minister does or not will be a vital litmus test of his real commitment to safeguarding those in our society who are vulnerable, disadvantaged and oppressed.’

What measures are included in the new Domestic Abuse Bill?

*The first government definition of domestic abuse. It will include financial abuse and controlling and manipulative non-physical behaviour 

*Proposals for a Domestic Abuse Commissioner to champion survivors and hold local and national government to account

*Domestic Abuse Protection Notices and Domestic Abuse Protection Orders, which would allow police and courts to intervene earlier

*Prohibiting the cross-examination of victims by their abusers in family courts 

*Automatic eligibility for special measures to support more victims to give evidence in the criminal courts

The Domestic Abuse Bill was introduced in Parliament in July.

But it has been put on hold while Parliament is prorogued. 

The proposals would give better protection to those fleeing violence by placing a new legal duty on councils to provide secure homes for them and their children.

It would also introduce the first legal Government definition of domestic abuse, which would include economic abuse and controlling and manipulative non-physical behaviour.

A row erupted earlier this month over former prime minister Theresa May’s decision to honour her favourite cricketer, Sir Geoffrey Boycott, who was was convicted in France in 1998 of beating up his then girlfriend in a Riviera hotel.

While campaigners said it was sending a ‘dangerous message’ that ‘domestic abuse is not taken seriously as a crime’, Sir Geoffrey said he ‘couldn’t give a toss’ about criticism of his knighthood.  

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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