Andrea Pickett 13j - 'Just a piece of paper': VROs - superceded


‘Just a piece of paper’: VROs


In addition to being placed on parole, Kenneth Pickett was the subject of an active VRO  which was supposed to deter him from contacting or harming Andrea. Previously, he had repeatedly breached such VROs and a review conducted by WAPOL  following the murder of Andrea identified, among other failings, that ‘investigations into alleged breaches of restraining orders had not been adequately conducted’. A report by the Ombudsman entitled ‘Investigation into issues associated with violence restraining orders and their relationship with family and domestic violence fatalities‘ concluded that in 17 of 30 domestic violence fatalities over an 18 month period, a VRO had been granted at some point in time prior to the fatality. In three cases, a VRO was in force at the time of the fatality. In one case a VRO was revoked in the months before and in another case a VRO had expired two months prior to the fatality. As noted in the report, research literature indicates that the effectiveness of VROs decreases as the risk to the person experiencing violence increases.  In high risk cases restraining orders are insufficient if used alone.


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