POLICE are to use new SmartWater technology to catch domestic abusers.

The new national force - which has been energetically promoting the commercial product to tackle housebreaking - has launched a pilot project to prevent assaults in the home.

SmartWater - an invisible liquid sprayed on items or buildings as a forensic marker - is normally used to identify stolen goods or thieves.

Police hope to use it to mark the homes of the victims of serial abusers in East Dunbartonshire to see if it can link perpetrators with the scene of their crimes.

The force is particularly keen to use the product to build cases against abusers who breach their bail conditions by visiting, for example, the home of an ex-partner.

Chief Inspector Rob Hay said: "We are focusing our efforts towards targeting repeat offenders and serial offenders and making our position absolutely clear that this type of behaviour is unacceptable and that, with our partners, we will continue to challenge those who are responsible.

"We believe this approach will lead to an increase in confidence for people to come forward to report abuse."

The SmartWater pilot will be funded by East Dunbartonshire Council via Empowered, a multi-agency partnership tackling abuse.

Chair of Empowered, Madeleine Sedgwick, said: "I am thrilled that we have been able to help fund and support this exciting and innovative new technology which will contribute hugely to ensuring the safety of domestic abuse victims in East Dunbartonshire.

"I hope that by supporting this we are sending a strong message to any perpetrator of violence against women that it will not be tolerated and we will take any means necessary to protect any individual under threat of violence."

SmartWater Chief Executive Phil Cleary said: "This is a highly innovative use for SmartWater technology, for which Police Scotland deserves considerable praise."

The pilot project will take place over the festive period, when abuse calls traditionally peak.