Connecticut has averaged fourteen (14) deaths resulting from intimate partner violence each year over the past decade. Domestic violence homicide is not diminishing in our state, rather over the last decade the number has remained steady from year to year.
Led by CCADV, the Connecticut Domestic Violence Fatality Review Committee was established in 2001 and works to prevent future deaths by conducting multi-disciplinary, systemic examinations of intimate partner fatalities and near fatalities that occur in our state. A retrospective examination of individual fatalities allows the Committee to comprehensively analyze the strengths and challenges of the community's response to domestic violence. The review process does not and will not assign blame for fatalities to individuals, agencies or institutions; the perpetrator of the homicide is assumed to be ultimately responsible for the death.
The objectives of the Committee are to:
- Enhance the safety of victims and accountability of batterers
- Identify systemic gaps and barriers to service
- Implement coordinated community response
- Influence public policy for prevention and intervention of domestic violence
Reviews of intimate partner fatalities and near fatalities are done in a confidential, reflective, and culturally-sensitive environment that will lead to meaningful recommendations for positive social and systems change. The Committee's recommendations, along with aggregate case findings, are highlighted in reports designed to promote positive change through training, prevention, education, and legislative advocacy.
The Committee defines a domestic violence fatality as a death that arises from an individual's efforts to assert power and control over his/her intimate partner. Near fatalities are those incidents of intimate partner violence resulting in the "serious physical injury" of the victim as defined by Connecticut General Statutes, including physical injuries that create a substantial risk of death, or which cause serious physical disfigurement, serious impairment of health or serious loss or impairment of the function of any bodily organ. Cases chosen for review by the Committee include fatalities or near fatalities in which the victim was an intimate partner or former intimate partner of the individual responsible for causing the death or injury and in which all criminal and civil matters pertaining to the victim and perpetrator are closed with no pending appeals.
Members of the Committee represent key stakeholders including: domestic violence providers, victim family members, law enforcement, prosecutors, public defenders, victim service providers, batterer intervention providers, advocates, and CT Departments of Children & Families, Correction, Public Health, and Social Services.
Annual DVFR Committee Findings & Recommendations
For more information about the CT Domestic Violence Fatality Review Committee, please contact Dan Cargill, Director of Legal Advocacy, at (860) 282-7899 or firstname.lastname@example.org.