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High levels of drug use in domestic abusers, study shows

An average of three in five (59%) of those arrested for domestic abuse offences tested positive for cocaine and/or opiates, according to findings from seven UK police forces. The highest proportion was 85% from one area.

The results also support anecdotal evidence that cocaine use is an exacerbating factor in domestic abuse.

“We know there are many reasons behind domestic abuse offending, and drug use, while not a causal factor, can make it more extreme or frequent,” said Mark Lay, who is the National Police Chiefs’ Council drugs coordinator lead.

These pilots help us to develop a more detailed picture of perpetrators to safeguard victims and potential victims, while making sure we signpost offenders to the most appropriate treatment programmes.

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