Available government research and domestic violence data suggest these laws have not significantly lowered domestic violence in states where they exist.
DENVER (KDVR) — Denver Broncos wide receiver Jerry Jeudy appeared in Arapahoe County Court Friday morning to face charges of criminal tampering with a domestic violence enhancer. The woman who called the police asked for the charges to be dropped, which the judge said was not possible.
The case has put a spotlight on Colorado police’s domestic violence arrest procedures. Under a law passed in 1994, police are required to arrest an accused perpetrator if there is any probable cause to believe that the accused committed an act of domestic violence.
Colorado is not the only state with such laws. Available government research and domestic violence data suggest these laws have not significantly lowered domestic violence in states where they exist.
Sixteen states and the District of Columbia have mandatory arrest laws for domestic violence: Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Connecticut, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, Nevada, New Jersey, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah and Washington.
A 2009 study from Harvard University researcher Radha Iyengar suggested these laws “may not have the strong deterrent effect anticipated.”
Recent statistics agree. Mandatory arrest laws do not appear to correspond with lower rates of domestic violence.
States with mandatory arrest laws have on average higher domestic violence rates, according to annual figures from the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
According to the coalition, 36.8% of Colorado women and 30.5% of Colorado men experience intimate partner physical violence, intimate partner sexual violence and/or intimate partner stalking in their lives.
More of the states with mandatory arrest laws are on the higher end of the domestic violence rate spectrum than the lower end.