Cat logomenu

The Crime That Crosses Class and Color Lines

Former prosecutor Rikki Klieman argues for prosecuting perpetrators of domestic abuse even when the victims refuse to testify:

These women do not like being beaten, and I literally recoil whenever I hear others blame them for staying. Their situations are complex and present a societal issue, not simply an emotional one. They literally cannot leave because they have been traumatized for months or years. They are completely vulnerable, having lost self-esteem even if they have successful employment or publicly appear as if everything is fine, particularly when both the man and the woman are otherwise reputable. Victims live in denial, blaming alcohol, drugs or gambling–anything but their abuser. Even if not in denial, they live in that deep valley of hope that things will get better, that they will work it out, that they can make things be what they were before, that he will change. They live cloaked in shame, feeling guilty that it is their own fault.

There are certainly other categories of crime that government will prosecute even without the participation of the victim, aren’t there? This seems like a good candidate for inclusion on that list.