Posted in Criminal Defense on January 9, 2019
Domestic violence is a problem all across the United States, and many types of abuse hurt adults and children all over the country every day. All Arizona residents should recognize the warning signs of domestic abuse and know the resources for recovering from domestic abuse.
Every state tracks domestic violence statistics and offers guidance to victims and survivors.
- Every 44 minutes, one or more children in Arizona witness domestic violence.
- About 60% of intimate partner violence offenders also abuse their children.
- Rural Arizona residents face an increased risk from domestic violence due to poor accessibility to support services and the distance to shelters.
- In 2013, the Arizona Department of Public Safety reported 1,833 rapes, accounting for .8% of the total crime index and 7.4% of all violent crime.
- In 2014, there were at least 109 fatalities from domestic violence in Arizona.
- 62% of domestic violence fatalities in Arizona involved firearms. National statistics indicate that the presence of a firearm in the home increases the chance that domestic violence will turn to murder by 500%.
- The rate of intimate partner homicides in Arizona eclipses the national average by 45%.
- More than one in three women and one in four men have experienced domestic violence at the hands of intimate partners.
- Arrests for aggravated domestic violence increased 82% between 2001 and 2010 in Arizona.
- Intimate partner violence accounts for about 15% of all violent crime nationwide.
- Arizona does not charge first and second-time offenders with domestic violence. The state only charges for third offenses and beyond, and first and second offenses include domestic violence tags.
- The most common punishment for a third-time domestic violence offender is probation.
- Only about 34% of domestic violence victims receive medical treatment for their injuries.
- The nationwide cost of domestic violence is around $8.4 billion per year.
Warning Signs of Domestic Abuse
It is vital for everyone to know how to identify a potential domestic abuser before disturbing behaviors escalate to full-blown abuse. Most domestic abusers engage in manipulation, financial abuse, and isolating behaviors to establish control over their victims. Research indicates that children who witness domestic violence at home are twice as likely to engage in domestic violence against future partners. The longer abusive domestic relationships continue, the higher the chances those relationships will lead to fatalities or serious injuries.
Overcoming Domestic Abuse in Arizona
Many federal resources exist for victims and survivors of domestic violence. These services include financial assistance for legal costs associated with domestic violence, housing assistance, and support networks that connect victims of abuse to shelters and other resources. Culturally specific resources are also available for LGBT victims of domestic abuse, indigenous tribal members, and minority communities.
Anyone who has experienced domestic violence should reach out for assistance as soon as possible. This is not always easy, especially when the perpetrator threatens to harm or escalates violence when the victim tries to leave or threatens to call for help. However, victims should work toward removing themselves from dangerous situations as soon as possible and should pursue support services at the federal, state, and local levels.
Perpetrators of domestic violence face criminal charges as well as civil liability for the damages they cause. In many cases, a criminal case from the state can run in tandem with civil claims from victims. Personal injury attorneys can be a great resource for any victim of domestic abuse; a lawyer can help coordinate support services, build a strong case using the available evidence, and help secure compensation for victims’ medical expenses, pain and suffering, and other damages resulting from domestic violence.