Journal of Family Violence

, Volume 9, Issue 4, pp 317-331

First online:

Fighting fire with fire: The effects of victim resistance in intimate versus stranger perpetrated assaults against females

  • Ronet BachmanAffiliated withBureau of Justice Statistics
  • , Dianne Cyr CarmodyAffiliated withDepartment of Sociology, Western Washington University

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The consequences of violence against woman are myriad, ranging from extreme psychological trauma to severe physical injury and even death. Utilizing the National Crime Victimization Survey, this paper explored the extent to which victim resistance, either physical or verbal/passive, during an assault differentially produced injury between intimate and stranger perpetrated assaults. It was found that female victims of assaults perpetrated by intimates were nearly twice as likely to sustain injury if they used either physical or verbal self-protective behavior. The only significant predictor of injury sustained by female victims of stranger perpetrated assaults, however, was presence of a weapon.

Key words

intimate assaults stranger assaults self-protection resistance injury