In 2015 the offence of controlling or coercive behaviour (CCB) came into force, the stated aim being to close the gap in the law around patterns of coercive and controlling behaviour in relationships- be that current or former partners, or family members. The Home Office have reviewed the available criminal justice system data, academic literature, and have engaged with stakeholders to understand exactly how the controlling and coercive behaviour (CCB) offence has been used since it was introduced.
The review found that prosecutions have increased year on year since 2015. However, it was acknowledged that there was room for improvement regarding understanding, identifying, and evidencing CBB. It is likely that only a small proportion of CCB incidents come to the attention of the police or are recorded as CBB and charge rates remain low. The report finds:
It is vital that the police (including domestic abuse specialists) have the training and specialist resources needed to establish whether there are patterns of controlling or coercive behaviours underlying the incident that led to a police callout.