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Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Domestic Violence incidents mapped

The map shows the distribution of police incident domestic violence in London in 2009. I have included these data in my classification of violence in London. This was an interesting decision I include the data for a number of reasons. First is shown in the table below;

In my first post about the analysis of violence explained I would be using the three result code fields for incident, "1" is "violence against person". This is the basis of all this analysis. I am now looking at the combination of "1" with "29" - "Domestic Incident". The table shows the total  number of incidents that contain these codes and the number of incidents that contain both. The combination of 1 with 29 is more than 4 times higher than 1 being recorded with any other incident code; it is therefore an important combination in the data set.

Second domestic incidents are a high priority for the Metropolitan Police with incidents of domestic violence a particularly high priority. Thirdly the data set for my clustering was biased towards non-residential locations as I used late night weekend incidents mostly associated with entertainment areas. Domestic violence by its nature mainly occurs in residential locations and thus counterbalances the previous bias.

There are arguments why I should not include DV incidents. The main one is that it may not properly record the occurrence of domestic violence as the more police treat it as a priority the more the demand will be for police to deal with it. So to a certain extent the demand is associated with positive police activity. This may be the arguments of police in the boroughs of Lewisham and Greenwich where domestic violence appears high. The fact is all demand is associated with police activity creating or maintaining confidence that police will deal with the incident appropriately. The point is the data are about the nature of the demand on police, but the above concerns are valid as domestic violence tends to happen in private and depends to a large extent on the victim reporting it to police whereas other types of violence tends to happen in public places and therefore is reported by witnesses and/or discovered by police.

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