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Incidence and Prevalence of Domestic Violence Victimization Among Female Arrestees in San Diego County

NCJ Number
Date Published
August 2003
108 pages
This study examined the prevalence of domestic violence victimization among female arrestees in San Diego County, CA.
Domestic violence has emerged as one of the most pervasive public health problems in the United States, if not the world. This study gathered information about domestic violence victimization from 181 San Diego County female arrestees who participated in the Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring (ADAM) program between August 2000 and May 2001. The first section of the report offers a lengthy executive summary of the research project and its main findings. Chapter 1 offers an introduction and background information about the research project. In addition to examining the prevalence of domestic violence among this group of female arrestees, the analysis also explored the association between patterns of substance abuse and violence and compared the female arrestee group with a group of women who entered shelters to escape abusive partners. Chapter 1 also outlines the research methodology. Chapter 2 offers the first findings regarding domestic violence among the sample of female arrestees and focuses mainly on the sociodemographic profiles of the participants, their treatment and criminal histories, and their patterns of drug use. Chapter 3 focuses specifically on the association between substance use and type and severity of domestic violence. Overall, the relationship between domestic violence and substance abuse was found to be complex and a clear picture of the association did not emerge from the data gathered for this study. However, it is clear that the experience of abuse is significantly related to substance use history. Chapter 4 offers a comparison of the main study group of female arrestees with a group of women who entered shelters to escape abusive partners. The analysis focuses on sociodemographic profiles, abuser characteristics, history of abuse, involvement with the legal system, severity and type of abuse, and substance use. Finally, Chapter 5 presents study conclusions and recommendations that focus on violence prevention, intervention, and public policy. The finding that substance abuse and domestic violence are linked should be addressed at the public policy level to help curb both domestic violence and substance abuse. Directions for future research are offered. Figures, tables, references, appendix

Date Published: August 1, 2003