Intimate Partner Homicide and Corollary Victims in 16 States: National Violent Death Reporting System, 2003–2009

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Objectives. We estimated the frequency and examined the characteristics of intimate partner homicide and related deaths in 16 US states participating in the National Violent Death Reporting System (NVDRS), a state-based surveillance system.

Methods. We used a combination of quantitative and qualitative methods to analyze NVDRS data from 2003 to 2009. We selected deaths linked to intimate partner violence for analysis.

Results. Our sample comprised 4470 persons who died in the course of 3350 intimate partner violence–related homicide incidents. Intimate partners and corollary victims represented 80% and 20% of homicide victims, respectively. Corollary homicide victims included family members, new intimate partners, friends, acquaintances, police officers, and strangers.

Conclusions. Our findings, from the first multiple-state study of intimate partner homicide and corollary homicides, demonstrate that the burden of intimate partner violence extends beyond the couple involved. Systems (e.g., criminal justice, medical care, and shelters) whose representatives routinely interact with victims of intimate partner violence can help assess the potential for lethal danger, which may prevent intimate partner and corollary victims from harm.

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Sharon G. Smith, PhD, Katherine A. Fowler, PhD, and Phyllis H. Niolon, PhDAt the time of the study, the authors were with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA. “Intimate Partner Homicide and Corollary Victims in 16 States: National Violent Death Reporting System, 2003–2009”, American Journal of Public Health 104, no. 3 (March 1, 2014): pp. 461-466.

PMID: 24432943