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Domestic Abuse Family Shelter, Inc.
Domestic Abuse Family Shelter, Inc     
"Dedicated to breaking the cycle of abuse." 

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           DOMESTIC VIOLENCE  FACTS              

Every fifteen seconds, a woman is battered in the United States.

Domestic violence is the single largest cause of injury to women in the United States. It is more common than injuries sustained in car accidents, muggings, and rapes combined.

Domestic violence occurs among all races, religions, and socio-economic groups.

Almost half of all injuries presented by women to the emergency surgical services occur in the context of partner abuse: and half of all rapes to women over 30 are part of the battering syndrome.

A woman's greatest risk of assault is in the home. A woman's chances of being assaulted at home by her partner are greater than that of a police officer being assaulted on the job.

Studies of abused women have found that the majority - 73% to 85% - do not experience physical assault until after they have married the abuser. Often violence occurs within the first year the couple lives together: many of the first incidents are around the time of the wedding or shortly thereafter.

A large number of violent attacks against women occur when they are pregnant, thus increasing the risk of injury and of miscarriage or stillbirth.

Infants who witness violence are often characterized by poor health, poor sleeping habits, and excessive screaming (all of which may contribute to further violence
towards their mothers).

80% of violent juvenile offenders and adult prisoners come from homes where domestic violence occurred.

63% of boys, aged eleven to twenty, who commit homicide, murdered the men who were abusing their mothers.

Children who live in a battering relationship experience the most insidious form of child abuse. Whether or not they are physically abused by either parent is less important than the psychological scars they bear from watching their fathers beat their mothers. They learn to become part of a dishonest conspiracy of silence. They learn to lie to prevent inappropriate behavior, and may learn to suspend fulfillment of their needs rather than risk another confrontation.They do expend a lot of energy avoiding problems. They live in a world of make-believe.

Every fifteen seconds, a woman is battered in the United States.


The legal definition of Domestic Violence is set out in Section 93-21-101 of the Mississippi Code of 1972, as Annotated.
  1. “Abuse” means the occurrence of one or more of the following acts between family or household members who reside together or who formerly resided together:
    1. Attempting to cause or intentionally, knowingly or recklessly causing bodily injury or serious bodily injury with or without a deadly weapon;
    2. Placing, by physical menace or threat, another in fear or imminent serious bodily injury; or
    3. Criminal sexual conduct committed against a minor within the meaning of Section 97-5-23.
  2. “Domestic violence shelter” means a place established to provide temporary food and shelter, counseling, and related services to victims of domestic violence.

To summarize, domestic violence is defined as acts of physical, sexual and emotional (mental) attacks between persons who maintain an intimate relationship or family/household members who live together or who formerly lived together.  This includes wives/husbands, persons living together as wife/husband, divorced couples, and child/parent.  Other examples can include girlfriend/boyfriend and other family members such as brother/sister/uncle/niece, and etc.

Although it is recognized that victims of domestic violence can be males, we are referring to victims as females unless otherwise stated.  Many words are used to describe victims and abusers of domestic violence.  These are used interchangeably.  They include family violence, wife abuse, spouse abuse, battered woman, batterer, and etc.

Domestic violence does NOT include the normal stresses and conflicts in a relationship, but rather the behavior that causes or can cause bodily injury or mental suffering.

Some examples of physical abuse include:  pushing, shoving, shaking, slapping, choking, punching, beating, sexual abuse, rape, and using a weapon or any type of instrument to cause bodily harm or injury.

Some examples of mental/emotional abuse include:  criticizing, humiliating, ignoring, threats of bodily harm or taking children away, isolation, extreme, jealousy, destruction of property, or harming pets.

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For more information:
Call (601) 428-1707


Domestic Abuse is a cycle with a pattern which consists of three phases: the tension-building phase, the explosive/physical beating phase, and the loving phase.
Unless this cycle
of violence is broken, it will
continue and the abuse will become more frequent and severe.
Cycle of Abuse

Domestic Abuse Family Shelter     |    P O Box 273    |    Laurel, Mississippi 39441    |    (601) 428-1707    |  
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