Database could save lives: experts
A NATIONAL domestic violence database would help police eradicate cross-border red tape and stop the steady flow of innocent mothers and children dying, experts believe.
The comments come after last week's horrific triple-murder/suicide, involving both NSW and Queensland when Paul Rogers murdered his ex-partner Tania Simpson and friend Antony Way on the Gold Coast, before abducting his five-year-old daughter Kyla and gassing himself and Kyla in his car just outside of Casino.
While police believe Mr Rogers and Kyla died shortly after he fled Robina, The Northern Star was told a national domestic violence database could help police faced with similar situations prepare themselves for dangerous family disputes.
It is understood while NSW Police have limited access to the Queensland Police database and criminal histories in that state, it is far from comprehensive.
Northern Rivers Community Legal Centre regional co-ordinator of the domestic violence court advocacy service, Lilian Gomez, said access to information between states was especially important in a region that neighbours Queensland. She said the community legal centre was calling for a national domestic violence database
“The police could go straight to the registrar and see there is an order protecting this family,” she said. “The database should be updated daily and should be nat-ional so the police can punch in a name and take it from there.
“There are too many children that are dying, as well as their mothers, just because they do not want to stay in an unhealthy relationship.
“One thing that needs to be clear is that normally what happens is men kill their children not because they are not getting access, but during access to them. They cannot cope with the fact that there is another person in their ex-partner's life and want to really hurt them. The most dangerous time for any woman is when she starts a new relationship. We have seen that happen time and again.”
Police initially said a custody battle was a factor in last week's murders-suicide, but Ms Simpson's family said both parents had equal access to the children.
NSW and Queensland police both confirmed to The Northern Star Mr Rogers and Ms Simpson did not have any domestic violence history, but it was no easy feat.
Queensland Police could not confirm if the couple was known to police in NSW as they did not have access to this State's information, despite NSW Police declining to comment because it was a Queensland-led murder investigation.