Thursday, July 17, 2008


Of roughly 3.5 million violent crimes committed against family members in 2002, 49% of overall family violence were crimes against spouses.

  • Females constituted 58% of family murder victims
  • 63% of spouse murderers used fire arms
  • Males were 83% of spouse murderers
  • Males were 75% of murderers who killed a boyfriend or girlfriend
  • Females were 84% of spouse abuse victims
  • 3/4 of victims of family violence were female
  • 3/4 of persons who committed family violence were male
  • Most family violence victims were white-74%
  • Most family violence offenders were white-79%...

Of the approx 60% of family violence victimizations reported during the period of 1998-2002:

  • The reporting rate among female victims was not significantly greater than the reporting rate among male victims
  • The FBI accounted for 72% of all interstate domestic violence referrals
  • Federal courts convicted 90% of defendants for interstate domestic violence offenses
  • 79% of convictions were the product of guilty pleas
  • 21% of convictions were the product of conviction following a trial
  • Most were male—96%

Family violence accounted for 33% of all violent crimes recorded by police in 18 states and the District of Columbia in the year 2000, of these, more than 270,000 family violence crimes, about half (53%) were crimes between spouses (110,000). About 49% of family crime recorded by police resulted in arrest. Males comprised 77% of suspected family violence offenders arrested in 2000

Police statistics show 33% of all violence is family violence, and that, 48% of family violence victims are spouses. 50% of offenders in state prisons for spousal abuse had killed their victims.

Of the crimes for which family violence offenders were in prison:

  • Most were against a female—78%
  • Local jail inmates convicted of family violence reported that their victims were predominantly female
  • Among family offenders who were in prison (both state and federal) in 1997, most were male—97%
  • Among jail inmates convicted of family violence, 55% injured their victim
  • Among family violence offenders in state prison in 1997, 93% were male
  • Among jail inmates convicted of family violence, 45% had been subjected to a restraining order in the past.
  • 18% were under an active restraining order at the time admission to jail

Demographic Characteristics of Family Violence Victims

  • Females are more likely than males to be victimized by family violence
  • Females were 84.3% of spouse abuse victims
  • Females were 85.9% of victims of violence between boyfriend and girlfriends
  • 73.5% of family violence occurs in the home

    Between 1998 and 2002:
    · Four out of five violent offenders were male
    · Among violent crimes against a spouse, 86.1% of offenders were male
    · Against a boyfriend or girlfriend, 82.4% were male
    · Females comprised 22.6% of family violence offenders.

The U.S. Department of Justice documents the flow of family violence through the justice system and issues statistics gathered and analyzed from the following sources:

  • Victim Surveys and Police Statistics, Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS),
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
  • (BJS) National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS)/ Crime Reported to Police
  • (FBI) Supplementary Homicide Reports (SHR) / Crime Recorded by Police
    (FBI) National Incident Based Reporting System (NIBRS) / Crime Recorded by Police / Arrests
  • (BJS)State Court Processing Statistics / Prosecution and Adjudication / Sentencing
  • (BJS) Federal Justice Statistics Program / Prosecution and Adjudication / Sentencing
  • (BJS) Survey of Inmates in State and Federal Correctional Facilities / Corrections
  • (BJS) Survey of Inmates in Local Jails / Corrections
  • (SCPS) State Court Processing Statistics

There is some discrepancy between victim survey numbers and police statistics, the report explains methods used in determining statistics. Family Violence Statistic page last revised June 12, 2005

According to the Dept of Justice, family violence has remained static for the 10 year period prior to this report, fluctuating only in concert with the ratios of violence [in our society] in general.

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