Intimate Partner Violence in Denmark: a Study of Offending Patterns Based on Official Statistics

Loewenstein Kristian Moesgaard, Vincent Harinam, Barak Ariel*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Danish studies of intimate partner violence (IPV) using police data are scarce, in part because access to records had been limited. The present study reduces critical gaps in the scholarly literature by examining IPV oFfending patterns in Denmark, using nearly 10,000 IPV incidents reported to the North Zealand Police, Denmark (2015-2019). We explore a common framework for analysing IPV, by observing (a) frequency, (b) severity, (c) intermittency, (d) escalation, and (e) concentrations of IPV. Harm is estimated using the Danish Crime Harm Index, which is based on the sentencing guidelines as an objective rod for estimating severity. Findings support the gender-based explanation for IPV, with males causing considerably more and higher harm than female oFfenders. Furthermore, the likelihood of re-oFfending only predicable not for 1/3 of the IPV oFfender population and rarely for high-harm incidents as they usually have no prior or no subsequent contact with the police. While there is a tendency towards escalation of harm between contacts to the police for all oFfenders, no such consistent pattern is discernible for IPV oFfenders who cause serious harm to their victims. Implications for policy and future research are discussed.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)288-308
Number of pages21
JournalEuropean Journal of Crime, Criminal Law and Criminal Justice
Issue number3-4
StatePublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© Loewenstein Kristian Moesgaard et al., 2022.


  • escalation
  • harm
  • intermittency
  • intimate partner violence
  • police
  • prediction


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