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Sheriff's Office Creates Dedicated Domestic Violence Unit

Published: 4/28/2023

For More Information Contact:

Captain John Watterson, 845-486-3860

Sheriff Kirk Imperati is pleased to announce the creation of a dedicated domestic violence unit within the Dutchess County Sheriff’s Office. The newly formed unit consists of two sworn members and two civilians, all overseen by a supervisor. 

The unit will be completely dedicated to serving the victims of domestic violence and seeking justice for offenders, but it will not be doing it alone. Through a partnership with Family Services the Sheriff’s Office already houses a Domestic Violence Victim Advocate, who is a first responder to a victim in need and partners with Deputies to ensure that victims are treated with compassion and have access to critical services. This new unit will do even more to keep victims safe and get connected with the right services, and will continue to liaise with Family Services and other law enforcement throughout the County to assist victims in any way possible. Leah Feldman, the Chief Executive Officer for Family Services, said that “the Dutchess County Sheriff's Office has been a special partner in the fight to ensure safety and justice for survivors of domestic violence. For many years we have had a vision for a domestic violence unit within law enforcement. This new unit is a testament to the continued integrity and innovation of the Sheriff's Office. We are proud partners in building a stronger, safer community."

In addition the Sheriff’s Office will continue to partner with the Dutchess County District Attorney’s Office to assist in the prosecution of domestic violence-related offenses, as it has done for decades. The newly formed unit is expected to enhance that collaboration and provide an even smoother path for the Sheriff’s Office to continue assisting with the prosecution of offenders. In reaction to the creation of the unit, Chief Assistant District Attorney Matthew Weishaupt said “Dutchess County has always been a leader in developing strategies to combat domestic violence. The creation of the domestic violence unit by the Sheriff’s Office will further enhance our efforts to reduce domestic violence using a collaborative approach. I am committed to participating with agencies dedicated to protecting victim safety and ensuring offender accountability. Sheriff Imperati’s insight and partnership with Family Services and the District Attorney’s Office will ensure direct access to services for the victim and effective prosecution of the offenders. I look forward to continuing our work together.”

Sheriff Imperati is honored to have the dedicated domestic violence unit as part of the Sheriff’s Office and expects that its benefits to victims and law enforcement will be immeasurable in the future. Sheriff Imperati said “I am extremely proud to have the new domestic violence unit here at the Sheriff’s Office. I have every confidence in the men and women that are part of it, and I strongly believe that the valuable work they do will have an enormous positive impact. I would also like to thank the District Attorney’s Office and Family Services for their continued partnership and support as we move forward with this new dedicated domestic violence unit.”