Domestic Violence

Domestic violence is the willful intimidation, physical assault, battery, sexual assault, and/or other abusive behavior perpetrated by an intimate partner against another. It is an epidemic affecting individuals in every community, regardless of age, economic status, race, religion, nationality or educational background. Violence against women is often accompanied by emotionally abusive and controlling behavior, and thus is part of a systematic pattern of dominance and control. Domestic violence results in physical injury, psychological trauma, and sometimes death. The consequences of domestic violence can cross generations and truly last a lifetime.

  • One in every four women will experience domestic violence in her lifetime.
  • An estimated 1.3 million women are victims of physical assault by an intimate partner each year.
  • 85% of domestic violence victims are women.
  • Historically, females have been most often victimized by someone they knew.
  • Females who are 20-24 years of age are at the greatest risk of nonfatal intimate partner violence.
  • Most cases of domestic violence are never reported to the police.
  • Approximately 20% of the 1.5 million people who experience intimate partner violence annually obtain civil protection orders.
  • Approximately one-half of the orders obtained by women against intimate partners who physically assaulted them were violated. More than two-thirds of the restraining orders against intimate partners who raped or stalked the victim were violated

(Definition and statistics provided by the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence)
Females are more likely than males to experience nonfatal intimate partner violence.

On average between 2001 and 2005, nonfatal intimate partner victimizations represented:

  • 22% of nonfatal violent victimizations against females age 12 or older
  • 4% of nonfatal violent victimizations against males age 12 or older.

Nonfatal intimate partner violence is most frequently committed by individuals of opposite genders.

On average from 2001 to 2005:

  • About 96% of females experiencing nonfatal intimate partner violence were victimized by a male and about 3% reported that the offender was another female.
  • About 82% of males experiencing nonfatal intimate partner violence were victimized by a female and about 16% of males reported that the offender was another male.

For homicides, intimate partners committed:

  • 30% of homicides of females.
  • 5% of homicides of males

(Statistics provided the Bureau of Justice Statistics).