Spring 2001 Home   Newsletters

Summer 2001

Fall 2001

President's Message (Maile Bay)
Lunch & Learn the Law
National Action Alert - Voting Rights for D.C. Citizens
Domestic Violence: Dual Arrest (Suzanne Meisenzahl)
Initiative & Referendum Study (Marian Wilkins)
Environment (Maile Bay)
Education (Mary Anne Raywid)
Campaign Finance (Laure Dillon)
Legislative Committee (Jean Aoki)
Nominating Committee
Two New Studies
League Local News - Honolulu (Pearl Johnson)
League Local News - Hawaii County (Marian Wilkins)
League Local News - Kauai (Carol Bain)

Domestic Violence: Dual Arrest

Across the nation the numbers of women being arrested, and the numbers of dual arrests in domestic violence cases, is soaring. In many of these cases women are simply defending themselves. The law is clear. Self-defense is allowed provided you use force equal to, or lesser than, the amount of force coming toward you. Do the police recognize self-defense? Can they identify the dominant aggressor?

In California a study covering the years 1988-1992 showed domestic violence arrests of women were up from 6% to 13%. Interestingly however, the prosecutions of women had not increased. Perhaps, then, they should not have been arrested in the first place? Across the nation, some jurisdictions report that dual arrests, of both parties, run as high as 40% of the domestic violence incidents. There are two national studies in the planning stages. One of these studies will examine the national prevalence of dual arrests and the reasons for those arrests as articulated by the arresting officers. The other study will look into the implementation of the dominant aggressor arrest policy.

Anyone who would like to help with research on local statistics should please call the League office.

Suzanne Meisenzahl

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