the manifestations of violence within what should be a loving relationship to fully
understand the horror to which victims are subjected and the need for adequate protection
to be provided by both the civil and the criminal justice systems.
Perpetrators and Victims
Domestic violence is conceived of primarily as a problem of men’s abuse of
women. Although researchers have documented abuse within same sex relationships4 and
although there is evidence that, in a comparatively small number of cases, women abuse
men5, the available research suggests that domestic violence is overwhelmingly directed
by men against women6. The prior relationship between victims and defendants is most
apparent in crimes against women. Men are more likely then women to experience
violent victimization. But the nature of these events differs greatly. Women are about six
times more likely than men to experience violence committed by an intimate. The prior
relationship between victim and offender causes particular problems for law enforcement
officials in the area of domestic violence.
Domestic Violence: Literary Review
Violence in the context of intimate relationships encapsulates may types of abuse:
emotional/psychological, physical, sexual and economic. Such abuse can occur within
married, separated and divorced relationships or among single people living together or
simply dating one another. Many enduring and dysfunctional aspects contribute to the
violence that occurs, so it is important to examine how abusive episodes emerge within
the context of the ongoing relationship. Of all the crimes reported to the British Crime
Survey in 2000, more than 1 in 20 was classified as domestic violence. Survey reports of…
A. Stanko (1989), ‘Policing Men’s Violence: An Introduction’ in J. Hanmer, J. Radford and E. A. Stanko (eds), Women, Policing and Male Violence: International Perspectives, London and New York, Routledge
Cook, B., David, F. &. Grant, A. 1999, Victims’ Needs, Victims’ Rights: Policies and programs for victims of crime in Australia, Research and Public Policy Series No. 19, Australian Institute of Criminology, Canberra.