Domestic abuse is behind the majority of murders in Ireland for the first time, Garda figures have revealed.
The force has published detailed results of an analysis of recorded domestic, sexual and gender-based violence incidents.
The report said homicides have declined over time, but last year the proportion of people “motivated by domestic abuse” accounted for the majority of homicides (52%) for the first time.
The year 2021 saw the highest number of recorded incidents of sexual offenses in almost a decade, as the number of sexual offenses in Ireland continues to rise.
Between 2019 and 2021, 80 percent of sex crime victims were women and 69 percent of victims were women of age or younger.
Sexual offenses with the intent of domestic abuse increased significantly between 2020 and 2021. Statistics show that in 2021 it was 26 percent of all sex crimes.
Gardaí said this was partly due to the introduction of victim-criminal links on the Pulse system.
For men and women, based on incidents that occurred between 2019 and 2021, the majority of sex crimes occurred in residential locations, 62% and 52%, respectively.
The data also shows that domestic abuse is predominantly gender-based and has increased over the past nine years.
Some of this increase is due to improved data recording while some is due to increased reporting.
While the increased incidence of domestic abuse can be partly attributed to Covid-19 and related restrictions, the rate of recorded abuse continues to rise after the lockdown.
In the first quarter of 2022, domestic abuse calls and incidents were 13% higher than the same period in 2021.
Last June, the Garda Commissioner was forced to publicly apologize to victims of domestic violence whose emergency calls were not answered properly.
An internal investigation was launched into how thousands of 999 calls were rejected by gardaí across the country over a 22-month period.
The controversy began when more than 200,000 emergency calls between 2019 and 2020 – 3,000 of which were related to domestic violence – were wrongly rejected.
Statistics released today also show how men and women experience violent and threatening crimes differently.
For female victims, there is a close link between domestic abuse and sexual and other forms of violence.
Domestic abuse intent was recorded for 90 percent and 43 percent of all women victims of murder, manslaughter, feticide and attempted murder, threats to kill, assault, harassment and related crimes between 2019 and 2021.
Male victims, while also experiencing domestic abuse, are more likely to be victims of violence by unknown perpetrators or in incidents unrelated to domestic abuse.
Between 2019 and 2021, domestic abuse intentions were recorded for 11% of all male victims of the three crime groups examined.
Between 2013 and 2021, last year was the first and only year in which domestic abuse-related homicides, murders, infanticides with any other motive accounted for 13 and 12 incidents, respectively.
A Garda spokesman said “significant efforts” had been made to develop training, policy and awareness in the force of the subtleties of domestic abuse.
While efforts to improve data recording and encourage reporting have led to an increase in cases, gardaí say there is still an element of under-reporting.
At the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, gardaí launched Operation Faossemah to provide support to victims of domestic abuse.
Statistics show that the number of call-backs made to victims of domestic abuse rose from just under 3,000 in January 2020 to over 4,000 in May 2020.
Similarly, the proportion of victims receiving call-backs within seven days increased from 38% at the start of 2019 to over 70% in April 2020 and remained at or above that level throughout 2020 and 2021.
Meanwhile, incidents of violent and threatening behavior are more likely to have perpetrators being male or incidents with female victims.
In incidents from 2019 to 2021 where at least one perpetrator was identified when a female victim was involved, 74% of incidents involved a male suspected perpetrator.
This rises to 94 percent in incidents related to domestic abuse of women.
When a man is the victim of violent and threatening behavior, in 88% of cases another person is the suspected perpetrator.
For the subgroup of incidents where victim-offender relationships are available, women are also more likely than men to know the perpetrator, with 84 percent of women knowing the perpetrator compared to men.
The most common type of relationship for female victims is a current or former partner or spouse: 33 percent of all female victims.
For males, where there was a known relationship, the largest proportion falls in the victim known to the other offender category at 22 percent.
The report also shows that children experience a large proportion of violent and threatening crimes and, on occasion, account for the majority of reported incidents.
Between 2019 and 2021, 11% of all homicide victims, 60% of all sexual crime victims and 14% of victims of attempted murder, threats of murder, assault, harassment and related crimes were children at the time of the incident.
A high proportion of child victims of sexual offenses are affected by incidents that are reported many years after they have occurred, that is, adult-reported experiences of child sexual abuse.
Attempts, death threats, assaults, harassment and related crimes are on the rise.
The highest number of incidents between 2013 and 2021 was recorded in 2019 when 21,835 incidents occurred.
This group also saw a change in the ratio of male to female victims. While the majority of victims in all years are men, the proportion of women is trending upward.
Statistics show that 38 percent of victims of attempts, death threats, assaults, harassment and related crimes were women in 2013, compared to 44 percent in 2021.
Speaking today, Detective Chief Superintendent, Garda National Protective Services Bureau, Colm Noonan, said: “An Garda Síochána is unwavering in our commitment to support victims of domestic, sexual and gender-based violence, and to investigate and prosecute perpetrators. .
“In recent years it has seen An Garda Síochána introduce a number of measures including Operation Faoismah, Divisional Protective Service Units, a strong focus on call-backs to victims of domestic abuse, and increased support for gardaí in the area. Training is included.
“As a society, there has been a very positive sea change in how we view, understand and tolerate domestic abuse in our homes and in our communities, and how unacceptable it is now.
“For our part, we are focused on a number of operational areas that we believe are relevant to how individual gardaí respond to victims and incidents of domestic abuse, to ensure that wherever a person lives, the service and Will provide the protection, which a Garda Síochána receives, of a consistently high standard.
“This report and the detailed analysis and trends it provides, particularly around the increased and increased recording of victim offender relationships and domestic abuse motives, will inform us at an operational level, that we will operate How can we build on the success of Faossemah?
“I urge anyone who has been or is currently a victim of domestic, sexual or gender-based violence to contact any garda station or call 999/112 in an emergency. I urge victims Assured that they will be supported and catered for every eventuality.Checked.
“By exposing these crimes more fully, as well as continually improving our police response and broader policies, we can help reduce the prevalence of domestic abuse in our community.”
Additional reporting by PA Media.