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Domestic violence hits home: Part 1

May 24, 2014

Judging from the entries on the arrest log, the Woonsocket Police Department seems to spend the better part of some days responding to domestic assaults and related crimes.
That’s hardly a scientific assessment, but here’s a way to put it that is: Adjusted for population, the WPD arrests more people for domestic crimes than any other major city in the state.
By far.
During the last full year for which data was available – 2013 – there were 411 arrests that fell under the heading of domestic crimes in Woonsocket, according to Rachel Orsinger, legislative coordinator for the Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence.
Coupled with the latest population statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau, that means roughly one in every 99 residents were arrested for domestic assault or a related offense. That’s more than twice the rate of arrests in most major cities.
The only other city that even comes close to Woonsocket is hardly one thinks of as an inner-city hotbed of crime, domestic or otherwise. It’s not Pawtucket or Central Falls, but Newport – better known for seaside mansions and sailing. But the City by the Sea has the state’s second-highest rate of domestic assault and related offenses – one arrest for every 131 residents in 2013.

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