Over the last nine years, a total of 54 men and women died during domestic violence disputes, according to a report by the Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Assault.
The vast majority of those 54 deaths were women, often at the hands of their male partners. Most of these homicides happened in the greater Providence area. Advocates hope the data will compel lawmakers to introduce tougher legislation against domestic violence.
Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Assault director Deborah DeBare said the state needs better education on the issue.
“There are risk factors that could have been identified in many of the homicides that we looked at in the report. So we’re looking to address some of those risk factors with a policy recommendation of implementing a dangerousness assessment for all offenders.”
Those risk factors include stalking and previous domestic violence charges. The group recommends restricting the firearm sales to anyone convicted of domestic violence.
Additionally, DeBare said more people need to know what red flags to watch out for.
“They are most likely to have been arrested before; they’re most like to have demonstrated risk factors. It’s a reminder that we need to step forward, and implement some policy recommendations to nip it in the bud.”
Men were also victims of domestic violence homicides, according to the report. Some of the homicides included in the report were the deaths of bystanders at the scene of the disputes.