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Attorney General of Virginia

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Commonwealth of Virginia
Office of the Attorney General

Mark Herring
Attorney General

900 East Main Street
Richmond, Virginia 23219


Contact: Emily Bolton
Office: (804)786-0147 
Cell: (804)839-9024 
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


~ 112 Virginians lost their lives to domestic homicide in 2014; training utilizes innovative, evidenced-based techniques & partnerships to prevent domestic homicides ~ 

RICHMOND (October 16, 2015) - Attorney General Mark R. Herring is hosting a conference to train more than 125 participants from law enforcement agencies, domestic violence programs, and  allied organizations from across the Commonwealth on Lethality Assessment Protocol (LAP), a groundbreaking, evidenced-based strategy to reduce domestic violence and prevent domestic homicides. The four-day training conference will take place on October 19-22 in Charlottesville at the DoubleTree Hotel (additional conference details below), including  remarks by Attorney General Herring at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, October 20.


"It's heartbreaking that 112 Virginians lost their lives at the hands of an intimate partner or family member in 2014, but even one is too many. We must remember that domestic homicide is preventable, and we simply cannot afford to ignore the warning signs," said Attorney General Mark R. Herring. "Domestic Violence Awareness Month provides us the opportunity to honor the strength, courage, and resiliency of those who have been victims of domestic abuse, to thank those who support them when they need it most, and to bring awareness to the issue so that no one else has to suffer at the hands of an abuser."


Attorney General Herring has made LAP training and domestic violence initiatives a top priority. He has hired a full-time staff member to implement and expand LAP across the Commonwealth. He has sponsored legislation to protect victims of domestic abuse, launched a human trafficking awareness campaign, and his office operates a variety of victim-centered programs including the Victim Notification Program and the Address Confidentiality Program.


LAP is an innovative, effective approach to domestic homicide prevention that helps first responders identify and properly handle domestic violence situations that may become fatal for a victim.  First responders are trained to use a standardized set of eleven questions, such as "Has he/she ever threatened to kill you or your children," that can predict when a victim is at immediate risk of further harm. If the victim is at risk of further harm, they are immediately connected to a 24-hour service provider in their community who can help get them out of the potentially dangerous situation and get them the assistance they need. This innovative process maximizes the skills of each party to ensure the most effective outcome: law enforcement's role keeping people and communities safe, and domestic violence advocates' experience encouraging victims to seek help.


Domestic violence homicides are preventable, but the statistics in Virginia remain alarming:

  • Data from the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner (OCME) shows[1]:
    • 112 victims lost their lives domestic homicides in Virginia in 2014
    • Domestic homicides accounted for 31 percent of all homicides in 2014
    • Black Virginians died at roughly three times the rate of whites from domestic violence homicide
    • More than half of domestic homicides are committed with a firearm
  • And, according to data from Virginia State Police (VSP):
    • There were 20,872 arrests for misdemeanor assault and battery against family or household member in 2014
    • There were 1,153 arrests for felony assault and battery against family or household member in 2014



Tuesday, October 20, 2015

What:     Lethality Assessment Protocol Training & Remarks from Attorney General Herring

Description:  This segment of the training will focus on anti-bias training in the context of responding to domestic violence calls and the issues underserved populations experience when interacting with law enforcement. This training will be led by Mark Wynn, an internationally renowned expert and survivor of domestic violence.  

When:             2:00 p.m. - Attorney General Herring's Remarks                                            

Where:            DoubleTree

                        990 Hilton Heights

                        Charlottesville, VA 22901


Additional information: Attorney General Herring and subject matter experts from the Office of the Attorney General will be available for interview.

Participating localities and programs Include:

  • Albemarle Country Police Dept.
  • Abuse Alternatives, Inc.
  • Albemarle Country CA Office
  • Albemarle County Victim Witness
  • Avalon: Center for Women and Children
  • Charlottesville Police Dept.
  • Charlottesville/Albemarle County
  • City of Petersburg
  • City of Richmond Victim Witness Services
  • Colonial Community Corrections
  • Commonwealth's Attorneys of Richmond
  • Commonwealth's Attorneys' Services Council
  • Franklin County Family Resource Center
  • Franklin County Sheriff's Office
  • Hampton Police Division
  • Hampton Sheriff's Office
  • HNN Criminal Justice Agency
  • James City County Police Dept.
  • Leesburg Police Dept.
  • Loudoun Abused Women's Shelter (LAWS)
  • Loudoun County Sheriff's Office
  • Loudoun Domestic Abuse Response Team
  • New Kent County Sheriff's Office
  • New Kent/Charles City Victim Witness
  • Newport News Police Dept.
  • Newport News Sheriff's Office
  • Office of the Chief Medical Examiner
  • Office of the Executive Secretary of the Supreme Court of VA
  • Petersburg Police Dept.
  • Pulaski Police Dept.
  • Quin Rivers, Inc.
  • Radford Police Dept.
  • Richmond Police Dept.
  • Shelter for Help in Emergency
  • Southwest Virginia Legal Aid Society
  • The James House
  • Transitions
  • University of Richmond Police Dept.
  • University of Virginia Police Dept.
  • Victim Witness Radford City/Floyd Co.
  • Virginia Association of Chiefs of Police
  • Washington County Sheriff's Office
  • Women's Resource Center of the New River Valley
  • YWCA Richmond

[1]Virginia Office of the Chief Medical Examiner. (2015). Family and intimate partner homicide: A descriptive analysis of the characteristics and circumstances surrounding family and intimate partner homicide in Virginia, 2014. Richmond, VA: Virginia Department of Health. Retrieved October 15, 2015 from


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