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NCJRS Abstract

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  NCJ Number: NCJ 183071     Find in a Library
  Title: Does Arresting Batterers Do More Harm Than Good? (From Taking Sides: Clashing Views on Controversial Issues in Crime and Criminology, Fifth Edition, P 142-161, 1998, Richard C. Monk, ed. -- See NCJ-183062)
  Author(s): Janell D. Schmidt ; Lawrence W. Sherman ; Evan Stark
  Editor(s): Richard C. Monk
  Date Published: 1998
  Page Count: 20
  Annotation: A child protective service professional and a criminology professor argue that in many cases arresting batterers does more harm than good, while another professor contends that persons who argue against arresting batterers completely misunderstand the depth of women's exploitation by the legal system.
  Abstract: While there is little doubt that sexual, psychological, and physical assaults occur in all domestic situations regardless of race, socioeconomic status, religion, or ethnic origin, solid information on the rate, intensity, and types of assaults is not available. With respect to the impact of police arrest policies in domestic assault cases, most cases brought to police attention involve lower-income and minority group households. Research indicates that arrest reduces domestic violence in some cities but increases it in others; that arrest reduces domestic violence among employed people but increases it among unemployed people; and that arrest reduces domestic violence in the short run but may increase it in the long run. Five policy recommendations are offered: (1) Repeal mandatory arrest laws; (2) Substitute structured police discretion; (3) Allow warrantless arrests; (4) Encourage the issuance of arrest warrants for absent offenders; and (5) Let special police units and policies focus on chronically violent batterers. In the opposing view, arresting batterers is considered to be a vital step in protecting and empowering females. Mandatory arrest of batterers can help control police behavior and provide immediate protection from violence and can especially help minority women because they are the most likely to suffer powerlessness due to institutional discrimination. In addition, mandatory arrest of batterers represents a progressive redistribution of justice on behalf of women. The multifaceted nature of domestic violence is examined, and issues related to criminalization and social control are considered. 2 references and 1 table
  Main Term(s): Criminology
  Index Term(s): Minorities ; Male offenders ; Violent offenders ; Comparative analysis ; Battered wives ; Police crime-prevention ; Abused women ; Police policies and procedures ; Arrest procedures ; Female victims ; Domestic assault prevention ; Victims of violence ; Domestic assault arrest policies ; Violent men
  Sale Source: Dushkin/McGraw Hill Publishing Group, Inc
Sluice Dock
Guilford, CT 06437
United States of America
  Publisher URL: 
  Type: Issue Overview
  Country: United States of America
  Language: English
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