BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — A new department has been created in Jefferson County to take aggressive action against those charged with domestic violence. 

The new domestic violence department will keep closer tabs on cases in the area, as officials believe domestic violence may influence the area’s homicide rate. The department is a partnership between the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office, local law enforcement and victim service providers.

“Seventy-four percent of known homicide offenders had a history of domestic violence,” Jefferson County District Attorney Danny Carr said. 

Authorities said that by monitoring domestic violence offenders with this new unit, law enforcement will know beforehand if they have an intention of harming others. 

“Working together is the best way to combat the violence that is occurring and the violence that we can see coming down the road,” U.S. Attorney Prim Escalona said. 

The DA’s office will approve use of $300,000 in federal grants to fund the unit.