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Domestic violence is an all-too-common crime that doesn’t receive nearly as much attention as it should, given the severity of its consequences and the effects it has on children. Here are some facts and statistics on domestic violence that will help you better appreciate the scope of the problem.

Facts about domestic violence

1. Domestic abuse is the most frequently reported crime fielded by American police. (Defina & Wetherbee, 1997)

2. Like many other forms of abuse, domestic violence tends to be intergenerational, passing down from one generation to the next. (Cappell & Heiner, 1990)

How common is domestic violence?

1. It’s estimated that 1 in 3 women, 1 in 4 men are victims of domestic violence. Some studies have suggested that men are actually victimized more frequently, though such cases are seldom reported and their injuries are typically less severe.

2. Around 10 million people in the United States are physically abused by an intimate partner every year.

3. Around 700,000 cases of domestic violence are reported to the U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics each year. Of these, 73% of victims are women, 27% are men. (Macionis, 2009)

Facts & statistics on children & domestic violence

1. Exposure to domestic violence is just as traumatic and harmful to kids as abusing them directly. Domestic violence is child abuse, even if the children themselves are never hit. (add ref, mb book)

2. In the U.S., an estimated 1 in 15 children are exposed to intimate partner violence each year–90% of them as eyewitnesses. (Jolie, 2020)

3. Up to 10 million American children are believed to be exposed to domestic violence each year. (Strauss, 1991)

Guns & domestic violence

When there’s a gun in the home, domestic violence becomes especially dangerous.

1. In the U.S., 50 women are shot each and every month by a current or former partner. A whopping 4.5 million people report having a partner threaten them with a gun, and American women are 16-times more likely to be killed by a gun than women in other developed countries. (Wofford, 2018)

2. 4,882 women were shot to death in 2019, and 53% of all American women murdered with a gun are killed by family members. (Pels, 2010)

Men & women injured or killed by domestic violence

1. 34% of domestic abuse victims will end up needing to receive medical care for their injuries.

2. On any given day, as many as 3 in 10 women at emergency rooms throughout the U.S. are there because of spousal abuse. (Hobbs, 2008, p. 93)

3. Around three-quarters of all murder-suicides involve an intimate partner.

4. At least 32% of women murdered, and 2% of men, are killed by their spouses, partners, or ex-partners. (Macionis, 2009) Actual percentages are undoubtedly much higher, since this is only confirmed cases.

5. More than 8.700 women were shot to death by their intimate partners between 2000 and 2013, and once again, actual numbers are undoubtedly higher, since this figure contains only crimes that have been solved and recorded in databases. (Welch, 2016)

6. It’s estimated 52.3% of all black female homicides are related to intimate partner violence. (Carlos, 2021)

Other facts & statistics on domestic violence

1. A recent study in the +Journal of Interpersonal Violence+ found victims of domestic violence typically experience around 10 incidents before calling 9-1-1. (Campbell, 2021)

2. It can take as many as 7-10 attempts to leave before abuse victims are able to finally cut ties and leave their abuser for good. (Carlos 2021)

3. Intimate partner violence is a very human problem, and can start much earlier than you might think: Kids as young as 10 or 11 report experiencing dating violence. 47% of tweens have been in a verbally abusive relationship, and 20% of 13 to 14 year olds surveyed know a friend who has been physically abused in a relationship. (ABC News Phoenix, 7-8-2018)

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