For Release: Tuesday, September 22, 2009
WASHINGTON, DC–Louisiana, with a rate of 2.53 per 100,000, ranked first in the nation in the rate of women killed by men according to the new Violence Policy Center (VPC) report When Men Murder Women: An Analysis of 2007 Homicide Data. The annual VPC report details national and state-by-state information on female homicides involving one female murder victim and one male offender. The study uses the most recent data available from the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s unpublished Supplementary Homicide Report and is released each year to coincide with Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October.
Ranked behind Louisiana were: Alaska at 2 with a rate of 2.44 per 100,000; Wyoming at 3 with a rate of 2.33 per 100,000; Arkansas at 4 with a rate of 2.29 per 100,000; Nevada at 5 with a rate of 2.23 per 100,000; Alabama at 6 with a rate of 2.22 per 100,000; New Mexico at 7 with a rate of 2.21 per 100,000; South Carolina at 8 with a rate of 2.04 per 100,000; Oklahoma at 9 with a rate of 2.03 per 100,000; and, Arizona at 10 with a rate of 1.92 per 100,000. Nationally, the rate of women killed by men in single victim/single offender instances was 1.30 per 100,000.
VPC Legislative Director Kristen Rand states, “These findings alarmingly demonstrate how domestic violence can escalate to homicide. More resources need to be made available to protect women and prevent such tragedies.”
Nationwide, 1,865 females were murdered by males in single victim/single offender incidents in 2007. Where weapon use could be determined, firearms were the most common weapon used by males to murder females (847 of 1,657 homicides or 51 percent). Of these, 76 percent (640 of 847) were committed with handguns. In cases where the victim to offender relationship could be identified, 91 percent of female victims (1,587 out of 1,743) were murdered by someone they knew. Of these, 62 percent (990 out of 1,587) were wives or intimate acquaintances of their killers. More than 10 times as many females were murdered by a male they knew than were killed by male strangers. In 88 percent of all incidents where the circumstances could be determined, the homicides were not related to the commission of any other felony, such as rape or robbery.