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NCJ Number: 98881 Find in a Library
Title: Legislative Trends in the Criminal Justice Response to Domestic Violence (From Crime and the Family, P 134-147, 1985, by Alan J Lincoln and Murray A Straus - See NCJ-98873)
Author(s): E S Buzawa; C G Buzawa
Date Published: 1985
Page Count: 14
Sponsoring Agency: Charles C. Thomas
Springfield, IL 62704
Sale Source: Charles C. Thomas
2600 South First Street
Springfield, IL 62704
United States of America
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The variety of State laws that try to change the criminal justice system's traditional approach to domestic violence indicates the need for Federal domestic violence legislation and the creation of a uniform or model State domestic violence law.
Abstract: These efforts might encourage the development of a unified agency response to domestic violence. Problems in the criminal justice system response to domestic violence include the nature of the rules of testimony, inappropriate police reactions to family crimes, and the attitude that domestic violence is a family problem and not a legitimate social concern. Many States have enacted laws to change the response to domestic violence by increasing police powers, establishing police training programs, authorizing temporary restraining orders, broadening judicial sentencing powers, and other approaches. However, few States have imposed mandatory duties on the prosecutor or judiciary in domestic violence cases. In addition, six States have no modern statutes. The confusing legal structure and the failure to develop a national consensus on the proper method of responding to domestic violence may have encouraged resistance to change on the part of criminal justice professionals. Although the authors of the new statutory framework have provided understanding of the role of the criminal justice system and problems in existing structures, the laws fail to provide an incentive structure or training that will bring about behavioral change. Without pressures through lawsuits or changes in the laws, change will come through attitudinal change in agency personnel. Training programs and consistent support from agency heads will be necessary to accomplish this. Fifteen references are listed.
Index Term(s): Child abuse; Domestic assault; Law reform; State laws
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