Petition to Amend Appendix to Arizona Rules of Criminal Procedure:
Would amend Form 4(a), Appendix to Arizona Rules of Criminal Procedure, to create a uniform risk assessment form to assist courts making a lethality determination in a domestic violence charge.
To protect the rights and safety of domestic violence victims, and to promote the effective administration of justice, the Arizona Prosecuting Attorneys’ Advisory Council (APAAC) petitions this Court to adopt the attached form as an Addendum to Form 4(a) in the Appendix to the Arizona Rules of Criminal Procedure.
In determining the conditions of release or amount of bail for a criminal defendant, a judicial officer must consider, among other things, “[t]he results of a risk or lethality assessment in a domestic violence charge that is presented to the court.” A.R.S. § 13-3967(B)(5). To aid judicial officers with this task, law enforcement agencies around the state have developed forms to document and present the results of such assessments, with the result that different forms are used in each county.
At the request of the Administrative Office of the Courts, the Commission on Victims in the Courts, the Committee on the Impact of Domestic Violence and the Courts, and APAAC assembled a working group to examine how lethality assessments are used in the criminal justice system in Arizona. A group including recognized experts in the field has worked together to create the attached risk assessment form, combining the research of the experts and the input of the other members of the group. (The risk assessment form is contained on page 1 of the attachment, while the rest of the document explains the form.)
The form will provide a great benefit by ensuring uniformity throughout the state. Law enforcement agencies will be encouraged to implement statewide policy in a uniform manner. Judicial officers will receive a form they are familiar with, no matter which law enforcement agency has investigated a case.
Even more importantly, the form is beneficial because it is backed by research and statistically validated to predict dangerousness to victims. In that regard, it will benefit courts, victims, and defendants alike.
Because the attached form will help law enforcement agencies to communicate information necessary to assist the courts to protect victims and do justice, APAAC urges this Court to adopt the form as the model assessment to be used as an Addendum to Form 4(a) in the Appendix to the Rules of Criminal Procedure.
RESPECTFULLY SUBMITTED this 14th day of December, 2016.
ARIZONA PROSECUTING ATTORNEYS'
ADVISORY COUNCIL (APAAC)
1951 WEST CAMELBACK ROAD, SUITE 202
PHOENIX, ARIZONA 85015
(BAR NO. 012838)
Filed: December 14, 2016
Comments due May 22, 2017.
ORDERED: Petition to Amend Appendix to Arizona Rules of Criminal Procedure=CONTINUED until further order of the Court.
ORDERED: Petition to Amend Appendix to Arizona Rules of Criminal Procedure=ADOPTED as modified, effective April 2, 2018.