Nice guy kills girlfriend

I see nothing much has changed while I was away.

The latest case in the national news involves Jovan Belcher, a linebacker with the Kansas City Chiefs.

Police report shows new details in Jovan-Belcher murder suicide

http://sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nfl-shutdown-corner/police-report-shows-details-jovan-belcher-murder-suicide-152440857–nfl.html

So, the reason for this fatal domestic violence incident, according to this article:

  • couple had been arguing for months
  • he was angry she was out late
  • she reportedly did not talk to him as he thought she should

Honestly, I can’t recall seeing “arguing” as a cause of domestic violence, have you? Or the manner in which a person speaks to another.

He’s painted with a lot of sympathy in this article – he only “reportedly” partied (in quotation marks in the article); he says he’s sorry to his girlfriend (sorry for killing her); his mother and coach are involved; he tells the coach how he wants his children to be taken care of (do killers have that right?)

The victim, on the otherhand, is a mother who went to a concert, had a few drinks, argued with her boyfriend, and spoke in a manner he didn’t like.

Hmmm.

 

A Teachable Moment? At what cost?

My letter to the editor of the New York Times did not get published – here it is:

Dear Mr. Feyer,
The headline “A Teachable Moment” (Feb. 20) connotes the idea of imparting knowledge and, I’d add, in an ethical fashion. Mr. Jones did no such thing.
Domestic violence is not mutual, as Jones implies. According to credible sources, like CDC, males perpetuate intimate partner violence 85% of the time. Police reports, shelter statistics, and court records provide further proof. And while boys can also be sexually abused, more often it is by older men – not women. Moreover, women are more likely to be murdered and stalked than are men, not vice versa.
Accurate information allows us to focus our resources, including financial ones. Remarkably, Jones refers to this as being “profitable” to organizations that help victims ‘projected as homosexual or female.’ What kind of teacher does this?
We can sympathize with male victims, but not at the cost of misleading society or disparaging organizations that assist victims.
Here is what I responded to:

To the Editor:

Charles M. Blow aims to provide readers with a “teachable moment” regarding the suspension of the CNN commentator Roland Martin after a gay rights organization complained that his Super Bowl tweets advocated violence against gays (“Real Men and Pink Suits,” column, Feb. 11).

Noticeably absent from Mr. Blow’s and others’ commentary was any criticism of the numerous graphic acts of violence — slaps, head butts, kicks, punches — depicted against heterosexual males during the Super Bowl commercials in the interest of humor.

Many commentators, politicians and advocacy groups tend to cast victimization with a homosexual or feminine identity under the guise of advancing equality and social justice. While profitable and politically expedient, such projections not only marginalize the significant number of heterosexual male victims of violence, neglect and abuse, but also recast them as victimizers.

Domestic violence is just as likely to affect men as women; one in five males in the United States has been sexually abused; males account for nearly half of all missing persons; the number of male and female child prostitutes is essentially equal in major cities; and more than half of confiscated pornography depicts boys, not girls. In short, no group has a monopoly on suffering.

We should condemn all public endorsements or mockeries of violence. Our rebuke should not turn on whether the victim is heterosexual or homosexual, male or female, or a member of a group to which we belong, but whether there was an offense made against a person’s human dignity. Unless we, as a nation, hold ourselves to such a standard, we will only substitute one brand of social injustice and bias for another, and compromise our moral authority.

SAMUEL V. JONES Chicago, Feb. 14, 2012

The writer is an associate professor of law at the John Marshall Law School.

Nice dad kills son

ANOTHER nice dad kills his son. Why? (Supposedly) Because his marriage broke up. (Why are women leaving these gems?) I have 3 words for these guys: SUCK IT UP.

 

 

A LITTLE boy thrown to his death from a bridge had tried to comfort his dad after his mother left them.

Friends and neighbours said a marriage break-up probably caused the murder-suicide of Jason Lees, 40, and his toddler Brad.

A neighbour yesterday recounted the heartwrenching day when two-year-old Brad hugged his weeping dad on the back stairs of their Brisbane home.

Marlene Stephens, who lives next door, said she thought Mr Lees’ wife Danielle was no longer living with them when he made the fateful decision to kill his son and take his own life.

“She left him a while back and you could hear and see him crying on the back stairs,” she said.

“I remember the little boy came down and wrapped his arms around him – I’m always going to remember that image.”

Ms Stephens said Brad always gave her a wave.

“It was always so lovely to hear them laugh. He was a beautiful kid,” she said.

Mr Lees, a much-admired teacher at a top private school in Brisbane, rode his bike on to Story Bridge about 2.30am on Monday and jumped to his death with Brad.

His wife, a psychologist from the Gold Coast, could not be contacted yesterday.

The couple met after Mr Lees moved from Canada about 15 years ago.

Bill Lees told the Ottawa Sun he met his baby nephew when his brother and his family visited Canada in 2010 so Jason could referee an international rugby sevens match. “That was the last time I saw them,” he said.

Rugby friends say they used to see Danielle at matches quite often, but hadn’t seen her much in the past year.

He loved his little son – he was the apple of his eye,” one friend said.

A parent said on Facebook that Mr Lees taught her son.

Why can I only feel deep sadness for his pain instead of condemning him for what he has done to himself and Brad?” she wrote.

– with Kate Kyriacou and Rose Brennan

What drives a father to kill?

Does this sound like the guy is trying to rationalize a father’s violence or be sympathetic to it? Kinda creepy.

What drives a father to kill?

The typical profile of a family annihilator is a middle-aged man, a good provider who appears dedicated, devoted and loyal to his family. However, he is usually quite socially isolated, with few friends and with profound feelings of frustration and inadequacy. The tipping point is some catastrophic loss or impending tragedy that threatens to undermine his sense of self and amplifies his feelings of impotence and powerlessness. In individuals for whom their family is an integral part of their identity – part of themselves, rather than a separate being – murdering the family is akin to a single act of suicide. It is a way of regaining control; of obliterating the impending crisis. This explains why men will often not only kill their partner and children, but also pets and destroy their property by setting fires. It is an eradication of everything that constitutes the self.

In addition to this, they are often motivated by bitterness and anger and a desire to punish the spouse; while killing the partner is an act of revenge, killing the children is an act of love as he believes he – and therefore they – will be better off dead than face the imminent loss of power.

While this points to severe psychological problems with underlying personality issues and maladaptive coping strategies, this, in itself, does not necessarily constitute a mental illness. However, professionals are divided as to whether these men can be held truly culpable for their actions. For the few that survive, jurors tend to find them responsible for their actions and therefore guilty of murder, but some end up detained in secure psychiatric hospitals indefinitely.

Experts, such as Jack Levin, Professor of Sociology and Criminology at the Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts who has studied family annihilators, have argued that they typically do know right from wrong and points to the fact that they are well planned and selective and that if a friend came along, the father wouldn’t kill him or her – instead, he kills his children to get even with his wife because he blames her and hates her.

Others, such as Tony Black, former chief psychologist at Broadmoor, are more circumspect. Black has argued that for anyone to commit such a heinous crime, there must be something fundamentally wrong with them and it is unhelpful just to simply think of them as ‘bad’. But what can be done to prevent such atrocities? Is there the possibility of intervention before such murders take place or ways to identify at risk men?

Scott Mackenzie, a consultant forensic psychiatrist in Essex who has assessed family annihilators for the criminal justice system, feels that often there are underlying anti-social personality traits and fundamental issues with rage and anger management. But these psychological traits are not uncommon in the population, and most will never go on to murder their family. ‘Those who act are often angry and resentful individuals. There is often a prior pattern of domestic abuse. But predicting with any reliability who will suddenly flip and resort to this kind of behaviour is incredibly difficult, if not near impossible. After any such incident there are inevitably questions asked if anything could be done, if someone could have intervened or spotted the signs. Tragically, in most cases, the answer is no.’

Wrong answer! Here is how we prevent it:

  • Look for the red flags (anger, resentment, abuse, control, coercion)
  • Take threats seriously
  • Believe women when they express fear
  • Do NOT provide leniency in domestic violence
  • Treat domestic violence like other crimes
  • Educate society on domestic violence (myths vs. reality)
  • Don’t be silent about abuse – it can lead to shame, victim blaming, tolerance for this crime
  • Change how the media present stories – the “nice guy”‘ murders wife – does not provide the context to understand DV
  • Change the culture – violence against women is not inevitable

 

Police officers won’t be charged with domestic violence

Of course they won’t…

Two officers arrested in domestic violence cases won’t be charged

http://www.jsonline.com/watchdog/watchdogreports/2-officers-arrested-in-domestic-violence-cases-wont-be-charged-5e3ffuf-135762328.html

Interesting…

Domestic violence is far more common among the families of police officers than among the rest of the population, according to the U.S. Department of Justice and the National Center for Women and Policing. At least 40% of police families are affected by domestic violence, as opposed to an estimated 10% in other households.

One in four women abused

One in four women suffer sexual violence: study

Adele Horin
August 3, 2011 – 12:17AM

 

ONE in four women have been victims of sexual or domestic violence, or have
been stalked, according to a study into mental illness that found the median age
for being raped was 13.

It also found serious mental disorders and suicide attempts are prevalent
among women who had experienced these forms of gender-based violence.

Susan Rees, the lead researcher, from the school of psychiatry at the
University of NSW, said the impact of gender violence on women’s mental health
had been underestimated.

”This is a public health problem of some magnitude,” Dr Rees said.

The study, by a team of 14 psychiatrists, psychologists and statisticians
from the University of NSW and University of Melbourne, is published today in
the prestigious Journal of the American Medical Association.

It is based on a survey of 4451 women aged 16 to 85, drawn from the Bureau of
Statistics 2007 National Mental Health and Wellbeing Survey. The survey is
representative of eight million women.

Previously unpublished figures show 27 per cent of women have experienced at
least one form of gender-based violence: about 8 per cent have been raped, 15
per cent have experienced sexual assault that did not involve penetration, 10
per cent have been stalked, and almost 8 per cent have been badly beaten by a
spouse or partner.

However, what shocked the authors was the strong association between the
women’s experience and serious mental illness. It was especially noticeable
among women with exposure to two or more forms of gender violence.

For example, among women with no exposure to gender violence, 28 per cent had
a serious diagnosed mental illness in their lifetime. But among those exposed to
two types of gender violence, 69 per cent had a serious mental illness. Among
those with exposure to three or more types of violence, almost 90 per cent had
illnesses such as anxiety disorders, substance abuse, or post traumatic stress
disorder, and nearly 35 per cent had attempted suicide.

”The violence has a serious impact on women’s ability to function, to work,
to sustain relationships, ” she said.

Gender-based violence was more prevalent among women from poorer backgrounds,
and the first occurrence was early – a median age of 12 for sexual assault, 13
for rape, 22 for being stalked, and 22 for violence from a partner.

The executive officer of the NSW Rape Crisis Centre, Karen Willis, said with
counselling soon after the event and support from family and friends, women had
every chance of quick recovery.

”If women leave it for 20 years and blame themselves, or if others tell them
to ‘get over it’, it’s more difficult,” she said. ”It’s the same with domestic
violence. If women get away, that’s important for their safety. But it takes
more than a house to recover from the impact on their mental health.”

Dr Rees said women’s services needed adequate funding to deal with serious
psychiatric problems and public education was needed to alter attitudes that
sanctioned violence against women.

This story was found at:
http://www.smh.com.au/national/one-in-four-women-suffer-sexual-violence-study-20110802-1i9za.html