News – Domestic abuse courts open in four Sussex areas – BBC News

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Specialist domestic abuse courts have opened in four Sussex areas.

Sussex Police Chief Constable Jo Shiner said the new courts were “up and running” in Hastings, Eastbourne, Brighton and Worthing.

Katy Bourne, the police and crime commissioner for the county, said the courts will deal with defendants charged with any domestic abuse offence which would otherwise go to a magistrates’ court.

The new courts will also consider sentencing, breaches and variations of orders relating to any domestic abuse offences, including restraining orders, domestic violence prevention orders, non-molestation orders and other related cases.

Independent domestic violence advocates (IDVA) will support and keep victims informed throughout the prosecution process, according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

They can also attend court on behalf of victims during sentencing hearings.

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