Suicide rates in high-risk high-harm perpetrators of domestic abuse in England and Wales: a cohort study

Duleeka Knipe, Emma Vallis, Luke Kendall, Martha Snow, Kyla Kirkpatrick , Rosie Jarvis, Chris Metcalfe, Nathan Eisenstadt, Viv Bickham

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Background: A limited amount of research indicates a high prevalence of mental illness in perpetrators of domestic abuse (DA)
Aims: Estimate the suicide rate in high-risk high-harm perpetrators of DA.
Method: We utilised data collected as part of Drive, which supports and challenges perpetrators of DA to reduce their harmful behaviours. Using routine anonymised data, we established a cohort of clients (n=3475) who were referred via Multi-Agency Risk Assessment Conferences to the service, and were followed up during service engagement.
Results: Most clients were male (92%), and White British (76%) with a median age of 32 years (IQI 27-39). There were 10 male suicide deaths recorded with an estimated male suicide rate of 461 per 100,000 (95% CI 248, 856).
Limitations: Analysis was restricted to those referred to the service and a specific group of perpetrators, limiting the generalisability to all perpetrators of DA.
Conclusion: The suicide rate in this high-risk high-harm DA perpetrator group is significantly higher than many other high-risk groups. Improving their mental health and outcomes is imperative to reduce the suicide deaths in this group and therefore reduce the impact such deaths would have on the victims of abuse.
Original languageEnglish
JournalCrisis: Journal of Crisis Intervention and Suicide Prevention
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 3 Jul 2023

Structured keywords

  • SASH


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