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Feminist News


January-17-12

Domestic Violence More Common Among Police Officers

After San Francisco Sheriff Ross Mirkarimia was charged with three misdemeanors resulting from his alleged spousal abuse, the San Francisco Gate released an article indicating that law enforcement officials physically abuse their wives and female partners twice as frequently as civilians. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention indicates that incidents of domestic violence occur in 40 percent of families of police officers, as compared with 25 percent of civilian families.

Diane Wetendorf, author of the "Police Domestic Violence" victim handbook, stated, "The biggest problem for a woman reporting that she's been abused by her police officer husband or boyfriend is that nobody believes you. If you do speak up, the police are very good at turning the accusations around. The women get terrified, too, so the crime is very under-reported. There is a legitimate fear of retaliation."

Kim Gandy, vice president of the Feminist Majority Foundation, added "A lot of women abused by police who call battered women's shelters say, 'We're not going to report it because it won't be taken seriously and we're afraid.'"

Media Resources: San Francisco Gate 1/15/12; Feminist Daily Newswire 12/15/11