Clare's Law introduced for domestic abuse victims

The Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme, commonly known as Clare's Law, is being launched nationally today. Clare Wood was murdered in 2009 by an ex-boyfriend with a secret violent past.

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'Clare's Law' created after murder

George Appleton strangled Clare Wood in February 2009. Credit: PA Wire

Clare's Law was created after 36-year-old Clare Wood was murdered by a man who became known as the "Facebook fugitive".

In the days after her brutal killing, detectives issued a warning that her ex-boyfriend George Appleton might attempt to communicate with other women via the internet

Unbeknown to Miss Wood, Appleton had a history of violence towards women and was known to prowl online dating websites and Facebook in search of partners, often using different aliases.

The mother-of-one's body was discovered in the bedroom of her home in Salford, Greater Manchester, in February 2009. She had been strangled and set on fire.

Police watchdogs concluded afterwards that she had been badly let down by ''individual and systemic'' failures by Greater Manchester Police.

Theresa May: 'Domestic abuse shatters lives'

Today's national roll-out of 'Clare's Law' has been chose by the Home Secretary as it also coincided with International Women's Day and the launch of Domestic Violence Protection Orders.

Home Secretary Theresa May Credit: Reuters

DVPOs will enable police and magistrates' courts to provide protection to victims in the immediate aftermath of a domestic violence incident.

Mrs May said: "Domestic abuse shatters lives and this Government is working hard to provide police and local authorities with the tools they need to keep women and girls safe.

"Clare's Law and DVPOs are just two of a raft of measures we have introduced to hand control back to the victim by ensuring they can make informed decisions about their relationship and escape if necessary.

"Protection for victims is improving but sadly there are still too many cases where vulnerable people are let down."

Father welcomes 'Clare's Law' rollout

Undated Greater Manchester Police handout photo of Clare Wood. Credit: Police handout

A father whose daughter was murdered by an ex-boyfriend with a secret violent past today said he was "absolutely delighted" women across the country have today been given the "right to know" their partner's history.

The scheme, known as Clare's Law is named after Clare Wood, 36, who was strangled and set on fire by her ex-boyfriend George Appleton at her home in Salford, Greater Manchester.

Clare's Law gives women for the first time the right to know if a partner has a history of domestic violence and is being rolled out to police forces across England and Wales following a successful pilot scheme.

Clare Wood's father, Michael Brown, a retired prison officer from Batley, West Yorkshire, who spearheaded the "right to know" campaign after his daughter's murder in 2009, said today: "I'm absolutely delighted."

"I must admit it's tinged with a bit of emotion and a bit of sadness but we have got what we were fighting for - to bring protection into the country for half the population."

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