DOMESTIC VIOLENCE; Play It Smart

Article excerpt

It's bad enough that anyone dies from domestic violence each year.

It's even worse that few victims, if any of them, had to be a statistic.

The preventative nature of domestic violence is one of the reasons why the Domestic Violence Awareness Month of October is one of the more attention-worthy annual awareness campaigns going.

Domestic violence isn't just limited to women. Men and children can be victims and other family members.

But women tend to bear the brunt of most of the violence, particularly the deadly kind.

An analysis of female murder victims from 2008 by the Violence Policy Center in Washington, D.C., paints a statistical portrait of at least 1,817 women who were killed by men in domestic disputes.

- The average victim was 39. Eight percent were younger than 18 and 10 percent were 65 and over.

- Sixty-six percent of the victims were white, with black women next behind them at 30 percent.

- Ninety-two percent of the victims were killed by someone they knew.

- Fifty-two percent were shot and killed with guns. The other major methods were with knives or other cutting instruments and also by bodily force.

- In cases where the circumstances could be determined, 86 percent of the cases did not involve any other type of crime, with most of those involving arguments.

Duval County statistics for the same year indicate 11 homicides involving domestic violence.

In seven cases involving intimate couples, five of the seven victims were women, according to statistics from the Duval County Domestic Violence Mortality Review Team.

The team reviews each killing to gain insights on what happened, and make recommendations on what should be done. …