Monday, October 10, 2005

Attorney General Henry McMaster calls domestic violence the #1 crime problem

With October designated as Domestic Violence Awareness Month, the Violence Policy Center in Washington has just released its latest report, "When Men Murder Women: An Analysis of 2003 Homicide Data." The annual report details national and state-by-state information on female homicides involving one female murder victim and one male offender.

Alaska ranks first in the nation in the rate of women killed by men. Ranked behind Alaska are: Nevada, Louisiana, New Mexico, Tennessee, South Carolina, Arizona, Georgia, Mississippi and Texas. Nationally, the rate in 2003 was 1.31 per 100,000. In South Carolina, the rate was nearly a person higher at 2.21.

To combat this problem, the AG's office has launched a program whereby lawyers can volunteer as pro bono prosecutors for criminal domestic violence actions. There simply aren't enough government prosecutors available to handle the case load. I have recently signed on to assist in this effort, and urge other members of the SC bar to do the same. It is for a great cause.

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