Police have been heavily involved with domestic violence incidents this month.
Police have been heavily involved with domestic violence incidents this month. Trevor Veale

Police fight brutality in Dalby homes

IT'S been an unusually brutal week for some in Dalby, with 16 fresh domestic violence applications lodged since the start of the month.

The number of call-outs, particularly concerning repeat offenders, would be even higher according to Officer in Charge Senior Sergeant Terry McCullough.

Snr. Sgt. McCullough said it was rare to have a day in Dalby without a call-out, but that this month had already seen a spike in domestic violence cases.

He described some of the abuse committed against partners this week as "terrible, dog acts."

A 312 is the code for a domestic violence (DV) call, and no other code carries the same weight.

Even anonymous reports of DV today obligate police to attend with a mandate allowing entrance to the residence, with force if necessary.

From there, police have the right to identify every person at the residence and to detain any alleged offender for up to eight hours.

Sergeant Clint Ryan of the Dalby police said many of this week's call-outs had resulted in charges being laid.

He went on to say that responding to a DV call-out meant dealing with unknown psychological elements, potential physical danger and hours of paperwork once it was over.

"Our most intrusive power is the investigation of DV," Sgt Ryan said.

"Some of the cases (investigated) have involved physical injury...and damage to both residences and personal property.

"In some of the incidents children have been involved and a witness to these violent outbursts."

Domestic violence breaches or applications come only second to street checks in frequency of record - street checks being any recorded interaction between officers and the public on the street.

This makes DV, as far as criminal offences are concerned, the QPS' primary function.

This was not always the case.

Sergeant David Tierney explained that in the past a domestic situation would usually be resolved by applying a separate charge - usually drunk and disorderly - to the aggressing party.

That changed in 1989, with the passing of the Domestic Violence Protection Act.

Since then, police have been the first-respondents to all DV scenarios, with ever-widening powers to intervene in dysfunctional relationships.

Incidents of domestic violence are generally not reported on directly by the media to protect the identity and safety of the victims.

If you feel fearful or anxious around your partner, you can contact DV Connect on 1800 811 811 for anonymous, professional advice.


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