The terms “domestic violence” and “intimate partner violence” are today used as synonymous terms to describe some form of abusive behavior by one individual upon another person in a relationship. While these two terms are used interchangeably to describe the same criminal offense, they have different origins. AMU's Dr. Ron Wallace writes about how the term “intimate partner violence” moved us away from the old view that abusive violence only occurs in marital relationships where the husband was the abuser and the wife was the victim. The concept of intimate partner violence acknowledges that abuse can exist in any type of personal intimate relationship, regardless of sexual orientation, marital status, or gender.
By Dr. Gary Minor
Beginning in the mid-1980s, states nationwide began changing domestic violence laws and the criminal justice community began treating domestic violence on the same level as violence involving strangers. To accommodate these legislative changes, police agencies have had to refine how they investigate domestic violence cases. AMU criminal justice professor Gary Minor highlights two sets of questions that officers should ask victims to help build a case against an abuser.