“Domestic Violence and Law Enforcement” explores how three very police departments respond to domestic violence. The film starts in Duluth, MN, home of the influential “Duluth Model” and the first jurisdiction to introduce mandatory arrest. Lt. Scott Jenkins is our primary Duluth subject — Jenkins is internationally known for his authoritative and incisive domestic violence trainings. We ride along with patrol officers on the street, and learn some of the aspects of Duluth’s highly detailed procedures for responding to domestic all.
Next, the Family Crimes Unit in Baltimore, MD, an innovative program that puts a domestic violence detective team on the streets as first responders and follow up investigators. We interview Lt. Vernell Shaheed, head of the unit, who talks about how her group has put an emphasis on convicting chronic domestic abusers through improved investigative and evidence gathering techniques. We follow two detectives from the unit as they make a home visit with an abuse victim who is being intimidated by her abuser.
Then on to, Bronx, NY, and the 46th Precinct — probably the nation’s busiest domestic violence patrol area. We interview Dep. Chief Kathy Ryan, head of the NYPD’s domestic violence unit, and learn how her command has organized more than 300 domestic violence police officers spread over the city’s five boroughs. We follow officers from the 46th Precinct as they make home visits in the Bronx.
Lt. Jenkins in Duluth concludes with a reflection on his more than 20 years involved in domestic violence policing.