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Weapons tied to repeat domestic abuse

Date:
January 29, 2014
Source:
Michigan State University
Summary:
Women are up to 83 percent more likely to experience repeat abuse by their male partners if a weapon is used in the initial abuse incident, according to a new study that has implications for victims, counselors and police.

Women are up to 83 percent more likely to experience repeat abuse by their male partners if a weapon is used in the initial abuse incident, according to a new study that has implications for victims, counselors and police.

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Michigan State University researcher Amy Bonomi and colleagues studied the domestic abuse police reports of nearly 6,000 couples in Seattle during a two-year period. An estimated one in four women in the United States experience domestic violence at least once in their lifetime.

Because previous research showed that domestic abuse is more common in poor urban neighborhoods, the researchers expected to find that repeat violence could be predicted by where the couple lived.

But that wasn't the case. Instead, the main predictor of ongoing domestic violence was the use of a knife, gun or even a vehicle in the first incident. In those cases, women were 72 percent more likely to make follow-up calls to police for physical abuse and 83 percent more likely to call for nonphysical abuse -- such as a partner threatening to kill them.

"What this is telling police is that they are likely to be called back to this particular residence if a weapon is involved the first time they are called out," said Bonomi, chairperson and professor in MSU's Department of Human Development and Family Studies. "It's an indication of the danger and severity of abuse over time."

"The presence of weapons in the home," she added, "is also a red flag for the women themselves and the counselors who deal with domestic violence."

The study appears online in the research journal Violence Against Women.


Story Source:

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


Journal Reference:

  1. Amy E. Bonomi, Britton Trabert, Melissa L. Anderson, Mary A. Kernic, Victoria L. Holt. Intimate Partner Violence and Neighborhood Incomea Longitudinal Analysis. Violence Against Women, January 2014

Cite This Page:

Michigan State University. "Weapons tied to repeat domestic abuse." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 January 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140129115052.htm>.
Michigan State University. (2014, January 29). Weapons tied to repeat domestic abuse. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 21, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140129115052.htm
Michigan State University. "Weapons tied to repeat domestic abuse." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140129115052.htm (accessed April 21, 2015).

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