Demographics Of Domestic Violence In Colorado — 2005

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The fiscal year 2005 statistics for the Colorado courts for domestic violence charges, with associated mandatory restraining orders, are given in their Table 30, with a total of 14,726, and 365 cases of DV restraining (protection) order violations for a total of 15,091 domestic violence cases in 2005. Civil restraining orders are tabulated in their Table 29, totalling 13,580 (7,478 of these orders are for domestic abuse), for a combined total of 28,671. That total is down 644 (–2%) from the previous year, the second year in a row the number of restraining orders has declined.

The tables from which the data presented below are drawn is compiled by the State Court Administrator's Office and are available from the Colorado State Court Web site. The data are combined and presented here in Table 51 together with the population-normalized values for each judicial district.


 
    Table 51: Number restraining order and domestic violence cases, and divorce rate in the State of Colorado in fiscal 2005 (July 1, 2004 to June 30, 2005) by judicial district and county.

Judicial district

Colorado Counties

2005

Census

Restraining

orders (DA) 1

Domestic

violence

(RO violation) 2

Restraining

orders % 3

Percent of

population

Orders per

10,000 people

Divorces

per 10,000 4

 

1998

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

First 5

Gilpin and Jefferson

531,733

total

1,295

(727)

1,368

(41)

9.3%

13.0%

44

43

44

51

52

54

51

51

53

Second

Denver

557,917

Not included in DV totals

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

50

Third

Huerfano and Las Animas

23,217

total

132

(25)

105

(1)

0.8%

0.6%

82

124

127

119

118

136

109

102

56

Fourth

El Paso and Teller

587,500

total

3,027

(2,318)

3,220

(76)

21.8%

14.3%

140

114

107

103

104

115

109

106

67

Fifth

Clear Creek, Eagle, Lake, and Summit

89,357

total

199

(14)

443

(4)

2.2%

2.2%

27

75

66

68

67

73

69

72

45

Sixth

Archuleta, La Plata, and San Juan

59,915

total

308

(116)

299

(4)

2.1%

1.5%

56

83

86

98

79

87

95

101

49

Seventh

Delta, Gunnison, Hinsdale, Montrose, Ouray, and San Miguel

93,893

total

532

(255)

423

(44)

3.3%

2.3%

108

89

95

97

98

106

99

102

64

Eighth 5

Jackson and Larimer

273,375

total

492

(145)

1,077

(20)

5.5%

6.7%

42

38

42

57

65

74

64

57

49

Ninth

Garfield, Pitkin, and Rio Blanco

70,697

total

190

(65)

436

(6)

2.2%

1.7%

68

76

78

85

90

81

80

89

62

Tenth

Pueblo

151,322

895

(569)

821

(11)

6.0%

3.7%

56

92

121

127

120

137

121

113

57

Eleventh

Chaffee, Custer, Fremont, and Park

85,543

total

317

(22)

255

(8)

2.0%

2.1%

51

82

69

77

66

78

72

67

56

Twelfth

Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla, Mineral, Rio Grande, and Saguache

47,408

total

327

(64)

223

(9)

1.9%

1.2%

80

113

131

104

100

106

114

116

59

Thirteenth

Kit Carson, Logan, Morgan, Phillips, Sedgwick, Washington, and Yuma

77,893

total

208

(87)

300

(29)

1.8%

1.9%

61

61

64

62

75

63

68

65

51

Fourteenth

Grand, Moffat, and Routt

47,941

total

116

(31)

241

(15)

1.2%

1.2%

44

45

45

62

68

81

76

74

62

Fifteenth

Baca, Cheyenne, Kiowa, Prowers

21,336

total

83

(39)

86

(3)

0.6%

0.5%

84

80

79

77

82

75

69

79

47

Sixteenth

Bent, Crowley, and Otero

30,454

total

212

(67)

192

(12)

1.4%

0.7%

93

131

136

163

168

153

125

133

60

Seventeenth 5

Adams and Broomfield

442,904

total

1,177

(699)

1,296

(29)

8.6%

10.8%

53

67

62

65

66

65

60

56

46

Eighteenth 5

Arapahoe, Douglas, Elbert, Lincoln

806,912

total

2,485

(1,436)

1,558

(35)

14.1%

19.7%

N/A

46

49

52

59

60

56

50

47

Nineteenth

Weld

228,943

701

(413)

1,171

(12)

6.5%

5.6%

97

88

101

90

95

95

85

82

49

Twentieth

Boulder

280,440

502

(262)

783

(0)

4.5%

6.8%

25

48

51

47

44

51

44

46

44

Twenty first

Mesa

129,872

254

(72)

690

(8)

 

3.3%

3.2%

75

62

69

74

72

75

76

73

73

Twenty second

Dolores and Montezuma

26,605

total

128

(52)

111

(3)

0.8%

0.7%

54

55

65

87

95

86

89

90

53

Totals (minus Denver)

4,107,260

13,580

(7,478)

15,091

(365)

 

Av 62

M 67

SD 28

Av 67

M 77

SD 27

Av 69

M 80

SD 30

Av 72

M 84

SD 29

Av74

M 85

SD 28

Av 78

M 88

SD 28

Av 73

M 82

SD 23

Av 70

M 82

SD 24

Av 53

M 55

SD 8

County populations: U.S. Census Bureau

Restraining orders and divorces: Colorado State Court Tables 17, 29, and 30

Notes:

1. Prior to fiscal 2002 the courts lumped all civil restraining orders together. Statistics for 2002 and subsequent years separate civil and domestic abuse (DA) orders. For consistency with prior years both the total number and (domestic abuse) restraining orders are given. Again for consistency, the total number of civil restraining orders plus domestic violence cases is used to calculate percentages and per capita values. Where domestic abuse orders exceed 50% the values are shown in (bold).

2. A restraining order is mandated by law C.R.S. § 18-1-1001. Prior to 2005 domestic violence cases were lumped with restraining order violations. As of 2005 restraining order violations are tabulated separately and are shown here in parentheses following the sum of domestic violence cases and violations of protection orders. Restraining order violations are shown in bold if they exceed half the number of domestic abuse orders issued.

3. Average is from the sum of civil and criminal restraining order cases (28,671) divided by the state population minus Denver City and County.

4. Divorces includes all dissolutions, legal separations, and invalid marriage.

5. Municipalities within this judicial district may also issue restraining orders and prosecute misdemeanor domestic violence cases. The state court values given here do not reflect such cases.

Av —Statewide average

 

M —Mean of judicial districts

 

SD — Standard deviation of judicial districts

 

Top


 

From 2002 on the State Court Administrator has broken the number of restraining orders issued into the separate categories of (a) domestic abuse and (b) all others. The number of restraining orders issued in each judicial district are shown in parentheses (number of domestic abuse orders) in Table 51. The values for judicial districts where more than half the restraining orders are for domestic abuse are shown in (bold). However, for consistency with data from previous years, it is necessary to use the total number of restraining orders for each judicial district and accept the inherent bias. The statewide average (minus Denver) for all criminal and civil restraining (now called protection) orders is 70 per 10,000 citizens for 2005.

The number of restraining orders has increased over time, from 21,475 in 1998 (Table 38) to 28,671 in 2005 (Table 51), a 34% increase in eight years while the sampled population has only increased 18%. The only heartening news is that the numbers of restraining orders has been declining slightly for the past two years. However, the mean number of restraining orders for twenty-one of the twenty-two Colorado judicial districts for 2005 is 81 per 10,000 residents, with a standard deviation of 23 (Table 51), scarcely different from previous years.

In terms of the rate of restraining orders, the Third, Fourth, Tenth, Twelfth, and Sixteenth judicial districts once again lead the state for the year 2005 with 102, 106, 113, 114, and 133 restraining orders per 10,000 citizens respectively (Table 51). May god have pity on children and families in these draconian courts.

While the restraining order rate has decreased 9% in 2005 from the 2003 high, this trend does not suggest the domestic violence problem is being solved, or offenders deterred, by current law and practice (see Table 81).

If restraining orders are being issued at the same ratio of 69 per 10,000 citizens in the entire United States as in Colorado, there are approximately 2 million such orders being issued every year. That is a frightening number.

 

Percent of restraining orders versus percent of population in 2005

Top

A simple test of equity is the percentage of restraining orders issued in a judicial district versus the percentage of the population residing in that district. If uniform standards were being applied the percent of population would roughly equal the percent of restraining orders issued in that district. Any variance should diminish as the sample size increases. Thus large judicial districts like the Fourth, Seventeenth, Eighteenth, and Twentieth should show smaller variances than small districts like the Third, Fifteenth, Sixteenth, and Twenty Second.

Allowing for differences in the populations of the judicial districts we still find in Table 51 that again in 2005 the Fourth Judicial District has issued an exceptionally high number of restraining orders (21.8% of total) relative to its percentage of the state population (14.3%) sampled.

Although small districts, the Seventh (3.2% of orders, 2.3% of population) and Sixteenth (1.4% of orders, 0.7% of population) judicial districts consistently issue a much greater percentage of restraining orders than their populations would suggest.

While a larger judicial district, the Tenth (6.0% of orders, 3.7% of population) also falls into this category.

These four judicial districts fail this simple test of equity.


 

Comparison of domestic violence and abuse with other misdemeanors in 2005

Top

Table 52 is a continuing attempt, for eight years now, to see where and whether restraining orders and domestic violence correlate with other societal problems. The implicit assumption in Table 52, as in previous years, is that domestic violence is associated with other problems such as alcoholism, drug use, etc., in a judicial district. For example, underage alcohol abuse and drug use would be associated with abusive or broken homes, and that Joe Six Pack likely gets into other kinds of trouble, e.g., bar brawls, for which he is arrested as well.

However, if all other categories of similar crimes are at or below the state averages except domestic violence, it suggests a witch hunt is being conducted for that specific offense. Such actions by law enforcement officials and the courts are generally regarded as an abuse of process and a violation of the equal protection clauses of the state and federal constitutions.

In Table 52 a relationship between domestic violence and abuse and other misdemeanors is discernible in the Third, Fifth, Twelfth, and Sixteenth Judicial Districts. These are depressed rural areas ranging in population from 23,000 to 47,000 residents.


 
    Table 52: Selected misdemeanor filings in the Colorado courts for fiscal year 2005. Number of filings per 10,000 people.

Judicial district

Colorado Counties

2005

Census

Domestic

Violence

Underage

Alcohol

Offenses

Drugs

Offense

Against

Persons 1

Offense

Against

Property 2

Fraud

First 3

Gilpin and Jefferson

531,733

total

26

18

19

19

10

1

Second

Denver (not included in totals)

557,917

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

Third

Huerfano and Las Animas

23,217

total

45

58

52

41

33

10

Fourth

El Paso and Teller

587,500

total

55

13

27

22

13

2

Fifth

Clear Creek, Eagle, Lake, Summit

89,357

total

50

41

39

33

18

1

Sixth

Archuleta, La Plata, San Juan

59,915

total

50

10

18

16

8

1

Seventh

Delta, Gunnison, Hinsdale,

Montrose, Ouray, San Miguel

93,893

total

45

24

31

25

10

8

Eighth 3

Jackson and Larimer

273,375

total

39

20

34

23

17

0

Ninth

Garfield, Pitkin, Rio Blanco

70,697

total

62

27

30

37

10

2

Tenth

Pueblo

151,322

54

28

8

20

12

0

Eleventh

Chaffee, Custer, Fremont, Park

85,543

total

30

33

38

32

13

16

Twelfth

Alamosa, Conejos, Costilla,

Mineral, Rio Grande, Saguache

47,408

total

47

37

31

49

16

39

Thirteenth

Kit Carson, Logan, Morgan, Phillips, Sedgwick, Washington, and Yuma

77,893

total

39

18

26

24

7

1

Fourteenth

Grand, Moffat, and Routt

47,941

total

50

61

59

29

23

4

Fifteenth

Baca, Cheyenne, Kiowa, Prowers

21,336

total

40

23

22

18

17

49

Sixteenth

Bent, Crowley, and Otero

30,454

total

63

49

16

40

17

3

Seventeenth 3

Adams and Broomfield

442,904

total

29

4

11

13

8

0

Eighteenth 3

Arapahoe, Douglas, Elbert, Lincoln

806,912

total

19

22

11

14

11

0

Nineteenth

Weld

228,943

51

13

13

17

11

4

Twentieth

Boulder

280,440

28

50

23

18

21

0

Twenty first

Mesa

129,872

53

27

64

25

24

1

Twenty second

Dolores and Montezuma

26,605

total

42

36

24

33

33

11

Statewide average (– Denver)

Mean of 21 judicial districts

Std. deviation—21 judicial districts

Av 37

M 44

SD 12

Av 22

M 29

SD 15

Av 22

M 28

SD 15

Av 20

M 26

SD 10

Av 13

M 16

SD 7

Av 2

M 7

SD 13

County populations: U.S. Census Bureau

Misdemeanors: Colorado State Court Table 30

Notes:

1. Offenses against persons includes the crimes of assault, child abuse, forgery, harassment, sex offenses, and menacing.

2. Offenses against property includes the crimes of arson, criminal mischief, and theft.

3. Municipalities within this judicial district may also prosecute misdemeanor domestic violence and other crimes. The state court values given here do not reflect such cases.

4. Values that differ from the state average for a given offense by one standard deviation or more are shown in bold.

 

These relationships are examined over a period of eight years in Table 68.

Perjury prosecutions

Top

As has been true in previous years Colorado courts again failed to prosecute perjury. Table 30 from the state court administrator only shows 4 cases of perjury in 2005. In our experience the only time perjury is prosecuted at all is if the person admits it.

Subornation of perjury is not a criminal offense in Colorado and in People v. Turner 04 SA 178 the state supreme court ruled that a defendant in a criminal domestic violence case had no right to obtain documentation of what was probably subornation of perjury against him.

The rule of law cannot long endure if perjury is tolerated and subornation of perjury is condoned and even encouraged.

Protection order violations

Top

One of the suspicions about why there is such a discrepancy between police statistics and domestic violence court cases is that protection (restraining) order violations are included in the court statistics. In 2005, for the first time the state court reported protection order violations separately. Table 30 only shows 365 total cases of restraining order violations compared with 14,726 domestic violence cases and 7,478 domestic abuse protection orders (Table 51). This suggests that protection order violations are a very minor (~2%) percent of domestic violence court cases.

Top


 

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| Chapter 8 — Demographics Of Domestic Violence In Colorado |

| Next — Demographics of domestic violence in Colorado - 2006 |

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This site is supported and maintained by the Equal Justice Foundation.

Last modified 12/20/16