Journal of Family Violence

, Volume 18, Issue 2, pp 93–106 | Cite as

Substance Use and Abused Women's Utilization of the Police

Article

Abstract

There is extensive research that addresses the role of police in responding to domestic violence calls. However, there has been relatively little attention to the factors that impel women to call the police during an incident of abuse. This paper investigates the role of alcohol and drugs in influencing women's utilization of the police for misdemeanor-level incidents of abuse, and is based on interview data from 419 abused women. Results indicate that women are significantly more likely to call the police when male partners use both alcohol and drugs, and when they are frequently drunk. Offender drunkenness, rather than the quantity or frequency of alcohol consumption, has a significant escalation effect on police utilization by victims of abuse.

alcohol spouse abuse police utilization 

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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Sociology and Social WorkNorthern Michigan UniversityUSA

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