What is the Lethality Assessment?

The Lethality Assessment (LAP) is designed to enable victims at high risk for danger to utilize the community’s domestic violence resources more quickly.

Dr. Jacquelyn Campbell from the John Hopkins University School of Nursing has dedicated many years to researching violence against women in the United States. Dr. Campbell and her colleagues created an assessment that assists service providers in determining major risk factors that identify whether a victim is at high risk of danger by an intimate partner. The Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence (MNADV) utilized the danger assessment tool and other research provided by Dr. Campbell to create the Lethality Assessment Program-Maryland Model (LAP).

The LAP program is implemented by law enforcement agencies and partnering domestic violence service providers across the country. The LAP assessment consists of 11 questions asked to the victim by the responding officer. Based on the victim's responses to the screening questions, law enforcement can better identify whether the victim is at high risk of being killed by an intimate partner. In identifying victims that are more likely to be in mortal danger, first responders can connect these victims with community services to address the violence in their lives. As MNADV states, “The LAP is designed to encourage and enable high danger victims to utilize the community’s domestic violence resources, thereby reducing the risk of re-assault and intimate partner homicide.”

South Valley Services, an agency providing options to men, women, and children victims of family violence and sexual assault, found the LAP to be a great program in helping reach those victims who are in the highest need of our services. The community of West Jordan City has been incredibly supportive of South Valley Services. The agency has established a strong partnership with the West Jordan City Police Department, which has helped SVS implement the LAP program locally. Additionally, we have the privilege to partner with the West Valley City Police Department to implement the LAP in that city. SVS has received tremendous support from other domestic violence service providers in Utah. Our agencies share the goal of providing services to all of those impacted by violence. 

With the help of the Utah Domestic Violence Coalition, SVS will continue to expand partnerships with law enforcement and service providers. 

Additional resources on the LAP:

  • Maryland Network Against Domestic Violence (MNADV): mnadv.org

  • Utah Domestic Violence Coalition (UDVC): udvc.org

Do you need help for domestic violence? There are options for you. If you need immediate emergency assistance, please call 911

24 Hour Helpline: 801-255-1095

TTY/Text Helpline: 801-870-5018