The personal safety app police want EVERYONE to download to help protect users from domestic abuse and violent attacks
Officers in the North East are urging the public to download a free personal safety app to protect users in times of danger from domestic abuse and violent attacks by notifying emergency contacts.
The Hollie Guard app has been launched to protect users by sending their emergency contacts a notification and precise location, as well as audio and video evidence in times of danger.
Officers across the North East are urging the public to download the app after it was created by the Hollie Gazzard Trust following the murder of 20-year-old hairdresser Hollie Gazzard in 2014.
Hollie suffered months of harassment before leaving her ex-boyfriend Asher Maslin and reporting him to the Gloucestershire Police, but just days after she ended their relationship she was stabbed 14 times by Maslin.
Following Hollie’s death, her father Nick Gazzard created Hollie Guard to prevent further incidents of domestic abuse, stalking and fatal attacks.
Northumbria Police have warned that domestic abuse cases have risen worldwide during the pandemic, so the app could be “a real-life line for those in danger of abuse.”
According to police statistics, officers in England and Wales recorded 259,324 domestic abuse offences between March and June – an increase of 7% compared to the same period in 2019.
Detective Chief Inspector Claire Wheatley of the force's safeguarding department said: "As many of us are following government guidelines and staying home when possible and staying in a safe environment, there are unfortunately still many victims of domestic abuse who have found themselves trapped in their most dangerous place.
"During the outbreak of Covid-19 we have seen more reports of domestic abuse and this app could be a real lifeline for those in danger of abuse in the home.
"Our hearts go out to anyone who has suffered or is suffering and our message to them is that we are here to help. Please come forward and report to police and download the Hollie Guard app which has so many discrete features that can help you stay safe."
The Hollie Guard app is free to download on the iOS App Store or Google Play Store.