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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 221759 Find in a Library
Title: Sexual Assault Training of Law Enforcement Officers: Results of a Statewide Survey
Journal: Women & Criminal Justice  Volume:18  Issue:3  Dated:2007  Pages:81-100
Author(s): Linda M. Kinney; Eric J. Bruns; Patrick Bradley; Joyce Dantzler; Mark D. Weist
Date Published: 2007
Page Count: 20
Sponsoring Agency: US Dept of Health and Human Services
Rockville, MD 20857
Contract Number: U93 MC 00174
Type: Survey
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article presents the results of a statewide survey of Maryland law enforcement officers regarding the adequacy of their preparation to respond to victims of sexual assault.
Abstract: The survey found that only 47 percent of respondents received additional training on responding to sexual assault victims beyond mandated minimum training, which is not intensive. Of those who did receive additional training in this area, the median length of the training was 1 hour. The majority of all respondents reported they needed more training in how to respond to sexual assault victims. The majority indicated they would participate in additional formal training if it were offered at job sites at no cost. Analysis of differences between law enforcement personnel who did and did not receive additional training found that those who received extra training were involved in a higher percentage of sexual assault/abuse cases; reported feeling better prepared for managing such cases; were less likely to feel uncomfortable in working with a sexual assault cases; were more likely to report making decisions about the legitimacy of a case based on a thorough investigation; were more likely to interact with court systems, school personnel, and mental health clinicians; reported a greater percentage of cases in which victims willingly participated in the investigation; and were more satisfied with their interactions with the court system. Based on these results, this article presents a theoretical pathway model on the potential benefits of training law enforcement personnel in managing sexual abuse and sexual assault cases. All sworn officers (n=442) in each of 7 law enforcement agencies representative of the types of agencies in the State received the survey questionnaire. A total of 301 surveys were completed and returned. 5 tables, 1 figure, and 30 references
Main Term(s): Police specialized training
Index Term(s): Maryland; Police sexual assault programs; Rape investigations; Sex offense investigations; Sexual assault victims
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