Domestic abuse up during holidays: Sussex Police

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Domestic violence incidents rose in Sussex over Christmas and new year, the latest police figures have shown.

Sussex Police said 603 incidents were recorded across its area from 22 December to 2 January, compared with 578 for the same period in 2010-11.

Out of the 603 reported incidents, 202 were recorded as crimes ranging from assault to harassment, police said.

New Year's Day saw the highest number of calls with 89, followed by 26 December when police received 64 calls.

Body-worn cameras

The lowest number of calls received in a day was 37, compared with the daily average of 30 during the rest of the year.

Det Sgt Daniel Dugan said: "This was the third year that we operated these force-wide patrols, anticipating that certain days would be particularly busy with calls for help, and again we were sadly proved correct."

He added: "The increase over the holiday period is often down to higher alcohol consumption, combined with families spending more time than usual with each other.

"Relationships which are potentially abusive may come to a head at this time."

He said some incidents did not lead to crime reports because they involved family or personal disputes where it was not possible to see an offence had been committed.

But he said every incident was logged for future intelligence purposes.

During the holiday season, Sussex Police ran dedicated Operation Cranberry patrols, by officers equipped with body-worn video cameras, to respond to reports of domestic abuse.

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