Risk assessment of intimate partner violence in a police setting : reliability and predictive accuracy

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Risk assessment of intimate partner violence in a police setting : reliability and predictive accuracy

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Publication Doctoral Thesis
Title Risk assessment of intimate partner violence in a police setting : reliability and predictive accuracy
Author Svalin, Klara
Date 2018
English abstract
The Swedish Police Authority conduct violence risk assessments in cases of intimate partner violence (IPV), by the use of specific assessment tools. Such assessments are conducted in order to identify high risk offenders and there-after implement suitable interventions to prevent repeat IPV. In this thesis, two different IPV risk assessment tools have been evaluated; The Police Screening Tool for Violent Crimes (PST-VC) and the Brief Spousal Assault Risk Assessment Guide (B-SAFER), with the overall aim to contribute to fur-ther knowledge regarding police employees’ violence risk assessment and management. Specifically regarding the predictive validity and interrater reliability of such assessments. In the first study, we evaluated weather the PST-VC can be used by police employees to identify high-risk cases of repeat IPV. In addition, the preventive effect of the recommended interventions were discussed and whether these create a confounding problem with respect to predictive validity. The results showed that the predictive accuracy of the tool was fairly weak. Further, the assessors recommended a higher level of interventions in high risk cases, but those did not lower the rate of repeat IPV. Study II, aims to examine the inter-rater reliability of the PST-VC and the B-SAFER. Police employees conducted pairwise assessments of IPV cases, by the use of the tools. The cases were different though for the PST-VC and the B-SAFER assessments, meaning the consistency of the assessments could not be compared across the tools. The results however, were similar for both tools; the inter-rater reliability for the individual items were overall low, meanwhile it was rather high for the global risk assessments. A suggestion was that the assessors rather used their tacit knowledge, than the individual items in their global risk assessments, and that their tacit knowledge, at least to some extent, were shared. The third study focused at the B-SAFER tool, and the predictive accuracy of the individual items and the global risk assessments, in relation to repeat IPV/violence. The study also aimed to examine to what extent the recommended interventions were implemented and weather the interventions had a preventive effect on repeat IPV/violence. The predictive accuracy of the individual B-SAFER items and the global risk assessments, was overall low. However, a somewhat higher accuracy was found for a predictive value, saved from a regression analysis based on a combination of some of the B-SAFER factors, with the global risk assessment as the outcome variable. The majority of the recommended interventions was not implemented, and they did not prevent repeat IPV/violence. The last study (IV) was a systematic literature study, aiming to evaluate the predictive accuracy of IPV risk assessments conducted in different settings, with IPV recidivism as the outcome measure. The number of studies fulfilling the inclusion criterion (e.g. the assessments had to be conducted by practitioners working in the actual setting in which the study was conducted) was small (N= 11). One of those studies was conducted in a treatment setting, and all others were conducted in criminal justice settings. The predictive accuracy for the global risk assessments ranged between low to fair, and the role of treatment or other interventions to prevent repeat IPV, were analyzed in one way or the other, in eight of the studies. There was no consistency, however, regarding the importance of the interventions for repeat IPV. In sum, the predictive accuracy of the police employees IPV risk assessments was rather low, and the same applied to the inter-rater reliability of the individual items of the tools. The consistency was higher though, for the global risk assessments. The IPV preventive interventions was not effective in prohibit repeat IPV. The predictive validity of IPV risk assessments conducted in other settings was similar, but the results of the potential mediating role of the interventions was mixed.
Publisher Malmö university
ISSN 1653-5383
ISBN 9789171048981
9789171048998
Pages 160
Language eng (iso)
Subject Humanities/Social Sciences
Research Subject Categories::SOCIAL SCIENCES
Note Preliminary record
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/24791 Permalink to this page
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