Australia’S Divergent Legal Responses to Women Who Kill Their Abusive Partners
Violence Against Women, (2022)
45 Pages Posted: 15 Aug 2022
Date Written: July 2022
Concerns over the legal treatment of women who kill in response to domestic abuse have driven several jurisdictions to reform their homicide laws in recent years. This article examines how abused women are currently treated within the Australian legal system by analysing homicide cases involving women prosecuted for killing an abusive partner in Australia from 2010 to 2020. The findings reveal the limitations of legal reforms to improve access to justice for abused women. Instead, there needs to be an increased focus towards pre-trial stages of criminal proceedings and to address persistent misconceptions and stereotypes associated with domestic abuse.
Keywords: battered women, domestic violence, intimate partner homicide, law reform, self-defence
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