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Studies explore weapons and arrests in domestic violence cases

Date:
August 21, 2013
Source:
Sam Houston State University
Summary:
Weapons were involved in 40 percent of domestic violence cases in Houston, and researchers in this study discovered distinct patterns on when and where each type of weapon was used.

Weapons were involved in 40 percent of domestic violence cases in Houston, and researchers discovered distinct patterns on when and where each type of weapon was used, according to a recent study at Sam Houston State University.

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The study, "Profiling weapon use in domestic violence: Multilevel analysis of situational and neighborhood factors," was based on 9,450 detailed reports of domestic violence cases that occurred in 2005 throughout Houston, the nation's fourth largest city. While the majority of cases -- 60 percent -- reported the use of bodily force, weapons were involved in two out of every five cases. Knives were used in 7 percent of these cases, and guns were present in nearly 4 percent of cases, but the majority of weapons -- 26 percent -- were classified only as "other" in the police report.

The study, authored by Dr. Joonyeup Lee of Pennsylvania State University and Drs. Yan Zhang and Larry Hoover at SHSU, was published in Victims & Offenders.

For example, knives were more likely to be used in a residence and late at night. Men who confront women generally use bodily force, but men who confront men or women who confront men will more likely use a weapon.

"Police regularly respond to domestic violence calls, which can include anything from a verbal argument to a serious assault with weapons," said Dr. Lee. "Ideally, if we can figure out the pattern of weapon use, police will have an educated guess on what may be involved as they respond to the scene in such a short notice and with limited information."

In a second study by Drs. Lee, Zhang and Hoover, "Police response to domestic violence: Multilevel factors of arrest decision," researchers found that police decision making includes legal and other factors. Arrests in domestic violence case were most likely to occur in areas with heavy concentrations of immigrants and economically disadvantaged. In addition, domestic violence arrests were most likely to occur late at night, on weekends or at a residence.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Sam Houston State University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Joongyeup Lee. Police response to domestic violence: multilevel factors of arrest decision. Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, 2013; 36 (1): 157 DOI: 10.1108/13639511311302524

Cite This Page:

Sam Houston State University. "Studies explore weapons and arrests in domestic violence cases." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 21 August 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130821085424.htm>.
Sam Houston State University. (2013, August 21). Studies explore weapons and arrests in domestic violence cases. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130821085424.htm
Sam Houston State University. "Studies explore weapons and arrests in domestic violence cases." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/08/130821085424.htm (accessed October 31, 2014).

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