Incident numbers at high level Incidents of domestic violence in Bonn on the rise

Bonn · The number of incidents of domestic violence in Bonn is still high. Officials registered 965 cases last year. It is mainly women who are victims.

 Ein Mann droht einer Frau mit der Faust. Die Zahl der Fälle von häuslicher Gewalt in Bonn steigt in den vergangenen Jahren stetig.

Ein Mann droht einer Frau mit der Faust. Die Zahl der Fälle von häuslicher Gewalt in Bonn steigt in den vergangenen Jahren stetig.

Foto: picture alliance/dpa

He is what is called a repeat offender. The 23-year-old man from Königswinter was violent towards his family several times. As a consequence he was removed from the house and forbidden from returning. But the 23-year-old did not comply. Officials acted and the 23-year-old spent a week in police custody from 15 to 22 February. It was a first in Bonn.

With the new police law passed by the state parliament in December 2018, the police have been given more options for tackling those beating people up. If there is a court order, an electronic ankle tag is one option, so-called preventative detention another. This means perpetrators can be detained for up to ten days.

It was used at the start of the year on a 54-year-old Bonn man who was living apart from his wife. This did not stop him from constantly threatening and stalking her, reports police spokesman Michael Beyer. The man was taken into custody, where he remained from 25 January to 1 February, but in Mönchengladbach. The police said that at this time it was being tested whether there was enough space in Bonn to also carry out the measures locally. There is, as the 23-year-old man from Königswinter experienced for himself.

Cases of domestic violence on the increase

The cases of domestic violence are on the increase. Bonn police recorded 965 cases last year. In 2017 it was 870. Up to 31 May 2019, the authorities had recorded 426 cases. It can be found in all age groups and in all social classes. One thing is clear, though: it is mainly women who are the victims. The number of male perpetrators is consistently more than 80 per cent.

If danger is imminent, officers act immediately – regardless of whether the victim has filed a complaint or not. Police have extensively made use of their ability to remove the perpetrator from the home for 10 days. This gives the victim the chance to seek advice. If children are involved, the Youth Welfare Office is called in if necessary. Depending on the severity of the offence, the perpetrator can be kept away from the home for a longer period by court order and police even say it is possible to ban the offender from approaching the home or to remove a driving licence. If the perpetrator breaches the conditions, a fine is due. In the first instance this is generally Euro 500, says Beyer. “The amount depends on the level of income.”

Incidentally, says Beyer, “the electronic ankle tag has not yet been used for domestic violence in Bonn district police authority’s area of responsibility.”

(Original text: Ayla Jacob. Translation: kc)

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