Cuyahoga County High-Risk Domestic Violence Court
After extensive planning and preparation, the Cuyahoga County Common Pleas High-Risk Domestic Violence Court (HRDVC) began accepting cases in September 2020.
In 2019, HRDVC received a $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance Innovations in Supervision Initiative: Building Capacity to Create Safer Communities Grant Program. Judge Sherrie Miday was appointed to oversee the docket.
The HRDVC accepts male and female defendants charged with felony offenses involving the most severe forms of intimate partner abuse, including incidents of near-fatal strangulation and/or the use of a firearm in the offense. When a victim is strangled, they are seven times more likely to become a victim of homicide by their partner. An abuser’s access to a firearm in a domestic violence situation increases risk of intimate partner homicide by 20 times when there is a history of violence.
“Our team has worked tirelessly to prepare this docket,” says Judge Miday. “We believe that a dedicated, high-risk domestic violence docket will ensure consistency, promote accountability and provide resources for both the accused and the victim. By doing this, we hope to reduce recidivism and make our communities safer.”
The three-year grant allows for referral of 50 cases a year to the High-Risk DV Court.
The HRDVC has developed a matrix of eligibility for the program, and has a dedicated team of highly-trained justice system professionals who work collaboratively throughout the duration of the case to increase victim safety and offender accountability and, ultimately, reduce risk of intimate-partner homicide. Stakeholders include the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office, Cuyahoga County Public Defender Office, Cuyahoga County Witness Victim Service Center, the Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department, Domestic Violence and Child Advocacy Center, the Legal Aid Society of Greater Cleveland, Cuyahoga Criminal Defense Lawyers Association, Cleveland Municipal Court and the Case Western Reserve University Begun Center for Violence Prevention Research and Education
Judge Miday graduated from John Carroll University in 1998 and received her doctorate in legal studies from the Case Western Reserve University in 2001. Judge Miday dedicates much of her time to participating in numerous specialized domestic violence-training opportunities, serving as the Common Pleas Court representative on the Cuyahoga County Domestic Violence Taskforce and is the co-editor of the Baldwin’s Ohio Handbook Series: Domestic Violence Law 2018-2019 and 2019-2020.