Frontline response: exploring the impact of COVID‐19 on stalking behaviours

Short, Emma, Bradbury, Paula ORCID logoORCID:, Martellozzo, Elena ORCID logoORCID:, Frost, Stewart and Bleakley, Paul ORCID logoORCID: (2022) Frontline response: exploring the impact of COVID‐19 on stalking behaviours. Journal of Police and Criminal Psychology, 37 (3) . pp. 540-548. ISSN 0882-0783 [Article] (doi:10.1007/s11896-022-09514-w)

PDF - Final accepted version (with author's formatting)
Download (303kB) | Preview


COVID-19 pandemic lockdown changed the way in which we engage with others and our ability to enjoy free movement away from the confinement of our own homes. Whilst this dramatic change affected everyone, it constituted something much more threatening for victims of stalking, repeatedly targeted by those with an obsessive and fixated behaviour. Whilst we know more about the impact of lockdown stalking behaviour, very little is known about how the police and frontline workers are responding to this challenge. This research aims to increase an understanding of stalking in this context. Firstly, it presents a quantitative examination of recorded data on stalking offences provided by all 43 police forces across England and Wales. In addition, it explores the experiences of those working on the frontline who respond to reports of stalking made by victims. A total of 15 in-depth interviews were conducted with twelve police officers from three forces in England, as well as three advocates of victims from two national stalking services. Analyses show that stalking behaviour has increased and evolved to use accessible channels alongside the COVID restrictions. In conclusion, considerable pressure has been placed on front- line workers to adapt and respond not only to increased incidents but also the changes in the nature of stalking behaviour.

Item Type: Article
Sustainable Development Goals:
Research Areas: A. > School of Law > Criminology and Sociology
Item ID: 35315
Notes on copyright: This version of the article has been accepted for publication, after peer review (when applicable) and is subject to Springer Nature’s AM terms of use (, but is not the Version of Record and does not reflect post-acceptance improvements, or any corrections. The Version of Record is available online at:
Useful Links:
Depositing User: Elena Martellozzo
Date Deposited: 30 Jun 2022 10:08
Last Modified: 30 Apr 2023 03:04

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item


Activity Overview
6 month trend
6 month trend

Additional statistics are available via IRStats2.