Spousal homicide is basically as a result of individuals who engage in activities that abusive to their spouses and as a result, violence tends in the victims. Spousal homicide can be both on the males or the females (Harvey 67). Cases of spousal homicide have been present since the beginning of the 20th century up to date despite the changing and current methods of solving family disputes today that involve less bodily harm. There are major individual, social and economic factors that are causes spousal homicide in either a direct or indirect manner (Martin 156).
Gender difference/inequality is one of the major contributing factors of spousal and family homicide all over the world. According to researchers on general homicide, results are that the number of males and females who are victims of spousal homicide differ and is contributed to factors such as the type of people, the location, or the circumstance under which the victim meets his or her death. For instance, in Canada, 90% of the men are accountable for the spousal homicide in Canada annually; this is also the case in several countries. This is an implication that men outnumber the number of women as the wrongdoers. Therefore, women are more viewed as victims and less seen as offenders; in cases of men, they are more viewed as offenders and less seen as victims. This is mainly due to the issue of gender differences that has existed and continues to exist in most of the legal and social systems of several countries (Martin 157).
In history and today, major researches on the issue of spousal homicide show that females are victims of domestic violence from their family members. These members include the male closely intimate persons, or the husband. On the other hand, males are primarily victims of fellow male individuals who might be their brothers, stepbrothers, fathers or working mates. For instance, in Canada, between the years 1990 and the years 1995, the report on the spousal’s homicides on killing of women showed men who were either their spouses, ex spouses or an intimate partner constituted more than 55% of the perpetrators. On the other hand, only 6% of the male victims were victims of homicide from their female spouses or ex spouses. The above offensive and victimizing patterns for intimate spouses’ homicide have been consistent time to time (Neil 6).
Lethal and non lethal aggression in intimate individuals regardless of their gender, location or physical and psychological state is an element that exists in most of the individual’s who are in a relationship. According to researches by various psychologists on the issue of spousal homicides, men who are either victims or offended of spousal homicide have histories of past violent behavior and, in many situations; it’s the violent behavior element in them that precipitates their own homicides. For instance, in the U.S in between the years 1945 and 1950, police had prior knowledge of the existence of domestic violence between the offender and the victim in over 65% of the spousal homicide cases. Therefore, increase in non lethal violence between intimates often lead to increase in homicides cases. Lethal homicides between spouses share basic characteristics with non lethal homicides. For instance, in Australia in the mid 1950, non lethal violence often occurred between the spouses who live under the common law, partners with a low income level, cases whereby the males had the controlling behaviors over the females, unemployed spouses, and intimate persons under the influence of drugs and alcohol. The above are the most common factors that linked with spouses’ homicide on the grounds of non lethal violence (Neil 7).
Race and ethnicity is a factor that although not largely, contributes to the spousal homicides, spouses in certain races have been victim or perpetrators of spousal homicides that other races. For instance, in the United States, the risk of a person being subjected to spousal homicide is more for the African American individual in comparison to the whites or the Latinos. Reviews on the trends of spousal homicide in the 20th century in the United States have shown that the highest rates have occurred between the years 1970 and the years 1990. In this period of time, the young African-Americans have been the major victims and offenders of this homicide. In Canada, the rate of spousal homicide on the Aborigines is higher in comparisons to other races that are present in the country. The outcomes of racism are generally in humanistic as a result; the ethnic groups that are subjected to prejudice and discrimination often feel out of place. Due to the psychological and physical torture that is associated with racism makes these partners more violent and rebellious and turn to each other instead. The ethnic group of a victims or offenders of spousal homicide is also primarily affected by the age of the partners. Spouses or intimate individuals within the age bracket of 15 and 24 years are increasingly becoming the group that has the highest cases of domestic violence and homicide all over the world. Therefore young wives and husbands are at a greater risk of spousal homicide that the spouses in the other age brackets (Neil 8).
Weapon use another factor that has been associated with the increasing number of spousal homicides, however, this is an external factor. According to various researches, the likelihood of homicide in many cases is largely associated with the type of weapon that is currently available at the precise time. This can be either in cases whereby a man kills a woman or vice versa and in cases where individuals take their own life. A good example is the legal ownership of guns; this has been a major source of weapons for spousal deaths. Between the years 1979 and the year 1998, private owned guns contributed 40% o the weapons and arms used for spousal homicide in the United States (Neil 6).
Based on the above causes of spousal homicides individuals should be much careful on the action they take due to the possible outcomes. In the contemporary society divorce is the best solution for spouses whose relationships are not working. However, these are challenges that are associated with divorce. For instance, according to Neil, the issue of child support or the “dead bit dads” among spouse who never got married should be reformed since they are sometimes unfair to the male gender. The aspect of a man providing for a child and the mother when they are separated is a crucial issue to men. As a result, they result to violence while trying to justify themselves.
Spousal homicide can be combated on an individual level rather than general levels such as major involvement of the government or the criminal justice. The controlling of spousal homicide is typically a combination of efforts between the law systems, the social services, and the health care. This is due to the fact that spousal homicide is more of a family matter that requires counseling and guidance education to intimate persons. Medical professions are also known to make changes in individuals who are either abusive or violent; application of the law to such an individual only makes him or her worse after the serving of the term(Martin 156).