HDR Seminar: Can pre-recorded evidence raise conviction rates in cases of Domestic Violence? Evidence from a Quasi-Experiment in New South Wales
The School of Economics would like to invite you to a HDR seminar by Steve Yeong (University of Sydney).
Domestic Violence (DV) is a major public policy issue in Australia. Despite the fact that DV is estimated to impact millions of Australians and cost the economy 22 billion dollars each year, surprisingly little research surrounding policies aimed at reducing DV exists. In this study we present the first causal evidence for the effect of pre-recorded victim testimony on court outcomes for DV assault cases. We find the presence of pre-recorded evidence to raise the probability of a conviction by about 6 percentage points (8 per cent in relative terms). We then decompose the overall probability of a conviction into three parts: the probability of a guilty plea; the probability of a conviction for cases that proceed to a defended hearing; and finally, the probability that the prosecution withdraws the case. We find that the overall effect is primarily driven by a 15 percentage point increase in the probability of a conviction for cases proceeding to a defended hearing (21 per cent in relative terms).