Domestic Violence
Domestic Violence JOHN GOMEZ

Shocking murder rate linked to DV: report

NORTHERN NSW has recorded the highest domestic violence-related homicide rate in the state - prompting calls for stronger rules surrounding apprehended domestic violence orders to be enforced.

The NSW Domestic Violence Death Review Team has released its 2015 report, comprising analysis of data findings from 2000 to 2012 as well as case reviews of deaths finalised between 2010 and 2012.

Over the 12-year period, the report found 38 homicides occurred in a domestic violence context in Northern NSW - including 28 females, 10 males and 17 children.

Convenor of the review team, Michael Barnes, said the figures made for disturbing reading.

"Domestic and family violence continues to be a leading cause of homicide - its prevalence casts a dark shadow over our nation," Mr Barnes said.

"In some cases examined, women were killed in circumstances where there had been no history of physical violence, but their abuser had exercised almost total control over all aspects of their lives.

"Given this, it seems all too cruel that domestic violence victims are often most at risk when they try to leave the abuser."

The report contained 15 recommendations from in-depth analysis of cases within the review period.

They included a recommendation directed at Housing NSW to give nominated tenants the right to remove unauthorised occupants.

It also recommended NSW Police investigate additional strategies for increased compliance of ADVO's.

A multi-agency safety action meeting group will form in the Coffs Harbour region in April to review cases of high-risk victims in a bid to stop repeated and escalating violence.

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