Domestic violence against women happens around the world every day, but the main focus of location discussed in this paper is Washington State. Females are most likely to suffer domestic violence abuse from someone that they know. In such cases, it has been a spouse that is the attacker. Women escape these violent crimes and reach out for help, but not every time. Based off of the data collected, I strongly believe that females are more often victims of domestic violence than males.

Introduction: Domestic violence occurs in epidemic proportions, impacting an estimated 6. million American women every year, and causing more injury to women than car accidents, muggings, and rapes combined. It is a lethal crime, which claims the lives of four women on average each day, leaving hundreds of children motherless each year. Yet women are not the only victims; at least half of all men who batter their female partners also abuse their children and it is estimated that 1 out of every 20 individuals 60 years and older is the victim of elder abuse. Is domestic violence happening more against women as opposed to men, or is it happening equally in both sexes?

Violence towards women in a relationship is more talked about than violence towards men. Domestic violence can be anything such as: physical harm, mental abuse, sexual abuse, etc. Review of Literature: 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.

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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 the greatest risk of nonfatal intimate partner violence. * Most cases of domestic violence are never reported to the police. My first resource in researching Domestic Violence within Washington State is from Washington State Coalition against Domestic Violence (WSCADV). This report helps define domestic violence on a basic level of understanding.

It also gives specific statistics on domestic violence fatalities in the state of Washington from January 1, 1997 to June 30, 2006 and states that, “at least 359 people were killed by domestic violence abusers in Washington State. ” Homicide victims included domestic violence victims, their friends, family members, new partners and intervening law enforcement officers. The majority of the homicide victims were women killed by their current or former husband or boyfriend. This would equate to about 62% of the deaths that were reported.

We can only imagine that there are more that were left unsaid leaving the number shown as being very high already with the possibility of being higher. Women are the victims of intimate violence significantly more often than men. In 2001, “women accounted for 85% of the victims of intimate partner violence and men accounted for approximately 15% of the victims. ” Violence includes both sexual and physical abuse towards either party. 25% of teens experienced dating violence. My second resource in researching Domestic Violence within Washington State is from the National Coalition against Domestic Violence (NCADV).

This websites has a list of domestic violence statistics and supporting evidence as to why offenders react in such a manner. “Almost one-third of female homicide victims that are reported in police records are killed by an intimate partner. ” Growing up in an abusive household was reality to my siblings and I. Being an adult now, I’ve struggled maintaining control over my anger and have had an issue in doing so since I was a child. It’s a fact that “children who witness violence between one’s parents or caretakers are the strongest risk factor of transmitting violent behavior from one generation to the next. The third resource that I used is from the Office of Justice Programs/Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS). A specific article titled “Intimate Partner Violence in the United States” shows a graph of intimate partner violence rates declining from 1993 to 2006. The article is quite vague, with no real description or stats stating whether or not men commit more violence against women than women do against men. “Violence between intimates is difficult to measure because it often occurs in private, and victims are often reluctant to report incidents to anyone because of shame or fear of reprisal” (S. Catalano).

The fourth resource in researching Domestic Violence within Washington State pertains to charges and punishments for such crimes. In Washington State, “accusations of domestic violence crimes are taken very seriously by law enforcement, prosecutors, and the courts. In addition to potential jail time and fines, a conviction for a domestic violence related crime will have serious long term consequences. ” Everyone charged with a crime must go through a legal process in court.

Often times, if an individual is the victim of domestic violence in Washington State, the state will pick up the charges even if the victim does not want to file charges against the accused individual. Research Design: Qualitative research will be used to refer to research conducted in an interpretive or critical tradition. Research conducted in this tradition generally includes ethnographies, naturalistic observation or intensive interviewing studies, and uses some type of content analysis of words or texts to generate themes, which summarize the results of the study.

Qualitative research has the same concerns as quantitative research about the truth value of its findings but it is often referred to as trustworthiness or credibility. The goals of qualitative research are not usually to generalize from the findings to some larger truth, but rather to explore or generate truths for the particular sample of individuals studied or to generate new theories. There is often an emphasis in qualitative research on perception or lived experience. Sampling: The population of my study targets female victims of domestic violence in Washington State.

I will use non-probability sampling for this project. The reason I have chosen non-probability sampling is because it is quick and inexpensive. The specific type of sampling for this project is the purposive sample. Purposive sampling represents a group of different non-probability sampling techniques. Also known as judgmental, selective or subjective sampling, purposive sampling relies on my judgment when it comes to selecting the people, cases/organizations, events, and pieces of data that will be studied.

Data Collection: Many times abused women flee to shelters to escape from their abuser. In order to collect data on female victims of domestic violence I will visit a plethora of shelters in my area. Based off of what I witness and who is willing to speak about their incident, I will conduct an informal interview with the female victims. For the female victims that aren’t as eager to share their experience, I will build a targeted victim survey with numerous questions such as: * What is your age? * What types of violence have you endured? What is your ethnicity? * Did you notify the police? * How many times have you been harmed? * Was the perpetrator a friend, husband, boyfriend, or stranger? * Were you sexually abused or assaulted? After I receive the information from the victims’ private interviews and the confidential targeted victim surveys, I will compare my results to existing data, such as results from the National Crime Victim Survey (NCVS), that has been logged pertaining to the statistics of domestic violence on women in Washington State.

Research Considerations: When researching domestic violence I must keep into consideration that victims may be very emotional and unwilling to speak about what has happened to them out of fear. They may not be completely honest, which can cause reliability issues, not because they intend on being untruthful, but they have blocked out parts of the violence against them due to the memories that they hold. Confidentiality can be an ethical issue when considering researching domestic violence against women in Washington State. Many women are abused continuously because they are fearful of what might happen to them if they call the police and press charges, after their attacker is released from jail.

References:

Beeman, S. (2002, March). Evaluating Violence Against Women Research Reports. Harrisburg, PA: VAWnet, a project of the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence/Pennsylvania Coalition Against Domestic Violence. Retrieved July 14, 2012, from: http://www. vawnet. org Catalano, S. (2012, June 18). Intimate Partner Violence in the U. S.

In Bureau of Justice Statistics. Retrieved June 18, 2012 Domestic Violence Facts. NCADV, n. d. Web. 16 June 2012. Maxfield, M. G. , & Babbie, E. (2009). Basics in research methods in criminal justice and criminology (2ndnd ed. , p. 172). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth Cengage Learning. Statistics from our media guide. (2008). In Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence. Retrieved June 17, 2012 Washington Domestic Violence. (n. d. ). In Burg Criminal Defense. Retrieved June 23, 2012, from http://www. dvwashington. com/dv/home

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