Sussex PCC quizzes police on domestic abuse

bns_tribute'Cassandra Hasanovic
bns_tribute'Cassandra Hasanovic

QUESTIONS have been asked after a government report highlighted there was more to be done by Sussex Police to tackle domestic abuse.

Home Secretary Theresa May ordered last year reports to be compiled by police watchdog the HMIC on how every single force handled issues of domestic abuse and violence across the country.

A lot of positives were raised in Sussex, but the force was criticised on training issues and information supply to officers.

On Friday, Sussex police and crime commissioner Katy Bourne questioned acting chief constable of Sussex Police Giles York and also the assistant chief constable of Surrey for an hour and a half at her monthly performance and accountability meeting.

The Surrey force was represented as the two forces are working closely together on tackling issues such as domestic abuse and violence.

The meeting also discussed the receipt of a letter from the coroner, following the murder of mother-of-two Cassandra Hasanovic in Bognor Regis in July, 2008, by her husband.

The inquest identified a number of failings in how the force had handled domestic abuse in 2008. Sussex has since described the murder as a ‘watershed moment’ which saw it change a number of its practices.

“How Sussex Police is responding to the recommendations set out in the March domestic abuse report by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary is incredibly important to me, the partner organisations that work with victims and the people of Sussex,” said Mrs Bourne.

“I want to know that domestic abuse is not just a priority on paper for Sussex Police but is a priority in practice and that every officer knows this and is receiving the right training throughout their service.”

The force has made assurances training is being improved, with Mrs Bourne asking to see a delivery plan as soon as possible.