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The Politicization of SafetyCritical Perspectives on Domestic Violence Responses$
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Jane Stoever

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781479805648

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479805648.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 29 June 2022

Preventing Ordinary and Extraordinary Violence

Preventing Ordinary and Extraordinary Violence

(p.272) 11 Preventing Ordinary and Extraordinary Violence
The Politicization of Safety

Mary D. Fan

NYU Press

The paradigm of the armed and dangerous mass killer in public opinion and legislation is a homicidal-suicidal stranger hunting in public. Yet half of all firearms-related homicides take place in the home, typically among intimates and people known to the slain. Drawing on data from the National Violent Death Reporting System, this chapter shows that even in the context of extraordinary violence by the homicidal-suicidal, the major early red flags and risk factors involve seemingly ordinary smaller-scale assaults and domestic disturbances. Firearms laws prevent individuals convicted of crimes of domestic violence or under court-issued restraining orders from possessing firearms. The problem is that many perpetrators never come to the attention of a court. Based on these findings regarding what current legal screens miss, this chapter discusses how police discretion and scene-of the-assault procedure for “ordinary” domestic violence can help prevent escalation to the feared extraordinary violence of homicidal-suicidal mass killings.

Keywords:   Firearms, Gun violence, Domestic violence, Mass shootings, Homicide-suicide, Gun laws, Intimate partner violence, Police discretion, Gun control, Guns in the home

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