Date of Submission


Document Type



Criminal Justice


Leila B. Dutton, Ph.D.


Lethality Assessment Program, Intimate Partner Violence Intervention, COVID-19 Pandemic, Domestic Violence Services


Intimate Partner Violence, COVID-19, Domestic Violence


Intimate partner violence, COVID-19 Pandemic, 2020-, Family violence


The current study assessed the COVID-19 pandemic-related changes in risk factors for fatal intimate partner violence (IPV) among female victims. It additionally analyzed IPV services received before and during the pandemic. Data came from a system that most domestic violence (DV) agencies in Connecticut utilize to record their contacts with their clients, including an initial screening through a police-social service intervention. Results indicated that unemployment of the partner was significantly higher in the during-COVID group. Additionally, the delivery of criminal justice services was significantly higher in the pre-COVID group whereas delivery of law enforcement services was significantly higher in the during-COVID group. The results of this study can provide directions to DV agencies in their responses to women in violent relationships during societal upheaval that impacts an entire nation. The results can aid agencies in recognizing the fatal nature of IPV during natural disasters. The law enforcement and criminal justice agencies should use the results of this study to make adjustments to their IPV responses during times of societal upheaval in order to respond quickly and more effectively to high risk victims.