New Haven police are getting proactive about domestic violence. From now on dozen of patrols will have special kits to help properly collect evidence.
Police say the domestic violence kits could revolutionize the way they investigate and solve cases thanks to one main item, a digital camera. In cases where the victim is sometimes afraid to come forward a picture is worth a thousand words.
“Sometimes the victim changes their mind within hours and sometimes having the photographs and if the investigation is done properly, it gives an impact,” says Lt. Patricia Helliger.
Connecticut’s Chief States Attorney Office sent out 400 special domestic violence kits to departments around the state, New Haven received 44.
Helliger says the kits include phone numbers to counseling and shelter for victims who need it,” we know that sometimes victims if we don’t catch the perpetrator they can come back so we try to keep them safe.”
Officers will also have guidelines on how to respond to specific scenarios. “When it comes to the sexual assault they would use the checklist on what they need to secure into evidence cause a lot of times we miss really good things,” explains Helliger.
But the kits biggest tool is the digital camera. Ten supervisors and 33 patrol officers are being trained to use the kits that are should be in patrol cars as early as next week.