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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 94503 Find in a Library
Title: Reform in Kansas Domestic Violence Legislation
Journal: University of Kansas Law Review  Volume:31  Issue:4  Dated:(1983)  Pages:527-578
Author(s): DJ Gottlieb; LE Johnson
Date Published: 1983
Page Count: 52
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article analyzes current Kansas criminal laws and civil remedies dealing with spouse abuse. It considers pertinent statutes, appellate opinions, and the results of a survey of Legal Service attorneys practicing in the field.
Abstract: In 1979, the Kansas Legislature passed the Protection From Abuse Act, a comprehensive scheme under which family members may seek injunctive relief from abuse. In 1982, the Kansas Supreme Court eliminated interspousal immunity in cases of intentional or willful torts. Local and statewide reform efforts, such as the Governor's Committee on Domestic Violence, have sought to alert police and prosecutors to the need to enforce existing criminal penalties in domestic violence cases. Finally, in its 1983 session, the Kansas Legislature eliminated one of the last common law barriers to prosecution of marital violence by removing a spouse's exemption from prosecution for marital rape. One major conclusion from this study is that while police authority to arrest in spouse abuse cases is broadened under the new legislative thrust, effective reform of the criminal process requires systemic improvements, including better training of police, adjustment of bail policy, and reevaluation of sentencing options. A second conclusion is that although major improvements have already been made in Kansas civil remedies, enforcement of injunctive orders should be improved. Finally, neither the reforms adopted thus far nor those proposed will be effective in aiding battered women unless there is a public attempt to inform potential victims of their rights. A total of 355 footnotes are provided.
Index Term(s): Critiques; Domestic assault; Kansas; Law reform
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