The limits to self-defense claims in case of domestic violence homicides

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Resumo

Domestic violence is a serious social concern, cross-sectional to social classes and countries. It is mostly a gender inspired issue and the victims are in the most part women. Domestic violence develops in cycles: it starts with the building of tension, then takes place the incident of abuse and last happens the reconciliation, or honeymoon. As time goes by, the shorter these phases become and the greater and more severe are the attacks. Death is not rarely the outcome to the victim of abuse. But in some cases, the victim stops the abuse by killing the aggressor. The victim commits a homicide, but usually, after the aggression has taken place. This poses a question: should this victim be punished by the crime of homicide or is it thinkable that she may claim she acted in self-defense? To answer this question, we must revisit the requirements demanded by the law so that the self-defense claim is admissible as exemption of criminal responsibility – as a justification of the fact and exclusion of its unlawfulness. The main problem with self-defense claims in such cases is that the law requires the act of aggression to be present or imminent so that it is permitted to the victim to take her defense into her own hands. If the episode of aggression as already taken place, we fail to fulfill this requirement, unless me interpret the concept of actuality of the aggression broadly, as follows: domestic violence is a permanent offense, so, for as long as the victim stays under the domain of the aggressor, the aggression will remain present and allow self-defense claims to be admissible. It will only be left to answer whether the victim acted within the legal requirement of the necessity of the means used in her self-defense.
Idioma originalEnglish
Título da publicação do anfitriãoEuropean Conference on Domestic Violence
Subtítulo da publicação do anfitriãoabstract book
EditoraHáskóli Islands
Páginas259-260
Número de páginas2
ISBN (eletrónico)9789935468277
Estado da publicaçãoPublicado - set. 2023
EventoEuropean Conference on Domestic Violence (ECDV) - Reykjavík
Duração: 11 set. 202313 set. 2023

Conferência

ConferênciaEuropean Conference on Domestic Violence (ECDV)
País/TerritórioIceland
CidadeReykjavík
Período11/09/2313/09/23

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