Lethality Assessment Protocol Program (LAP)
In June of 2011 the Clackamas County Sherriff’s Office instituted, in partnership with Clackamas Women’s Services, the Maryland (Evidence Based) Lethality Assessment Protocol. Deputies, when responding to a domestic dispute, call the CWS crisis line on behalf of a victim and act as a liaison; even if she does not wish to speak to an advocate directly. Follow-up is done almost immediately and services are offered.
LAP is a screening tool used by deputies when called out to an emergency domestic violence situation. These 1st responders ask a series of questions to determine if the situation is potentially lethal: has the abuser threatened to kill her, does he have access to weapons, has he choked her, is he constantly jealous, does he spy on her, etc. If she answers yes to a number of them, or if the officer has a gut feeling, she is screened in and the officer expresses concern for her safety, makes the call to the crisis line.
Since its implementation a year ago, this program has been very successful. We were connected to over 175 survivors in the first year.
- All received: safety planning, emotional support, information on DV and the help that is available
- About half stayed in contact with CWS: longer term safety planning, emotional support, more detailed info on the justice system, help getting to safe housing, etc.
- Half of those came into in-person services: legal advocacy, shelter or motel, support groups, counseling.