Mandatory arrest policy was implemented during 1980s and 1990s as an impact of the Minneapolis experiment. Another law which has been implemented in US was Violence against women act in 1994 (Weisz, 2001). In this act, it was stated that police need to arrest people in domestic violence cases where there is any probable cause which is regardless of the wishes of the victim. It is an unethical practice (Fagan, 1996). That’s why 23 states of US currently use mandatory arrest policy and other states leave it to the decision of the responding officers.
Police of some states can arrest simply based on the probable cause of domestic violence and there are some states where police can make an arrest within a specific time after the incident has occurred. In states like Alaska, police cannot arrest a person if the abuse occurred more than 12 hours ago. Police are specially trained in order to assess the particular situation and they can decide whether they met the probable cause to that is required to make an arrest. e.g. There is a list of requirements in places like Wisconsin which must be met by the suspect before the police can arrest him. It includes, the age of suspect, relationship to victim etc.
The study acclaimed much criticism in USA (Dawson, and Dinovitzer, 2001). The criticism was mainly with respect to its methodology and the conclusions. One thing which the study concluded is the follow up period which was just six month. It was quite short to judge a person. The study could not capture the cyclical and episodic patterns which might occur in domestic violence case. In Minneapolis case, the police kept the arrestees in jail for overnight and in many other situations the accused persons were sent off to their home much before. Randomized experiments cannot be made in such cases as the reasons for domestic violence might be different in different cases and it is not mandatory for the police to interfere in the personal matter of people. Mandatory arrest cannot be considered as good practice in this case.