Introduction. Domestic Violence Remains A Serious And Widespread

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Domestic violence remains a serious and widespread crime problem in Australia, causing substantial social, emotional and economic costs to victims, families and communities (Morgan & Chadwick, 2009). Social values and attitudes towards domestic violence have changed over time, and while it was once regarded as a private matter, today domestic violence is considered socially unacceptable and a legal rather than a civil matter. Although there have been significant reforms in policy and policing of domestic violence, it continues to be a serious social problem in Australia with no evidence to suggest any reductions in its incidence (Stewart, 2001). A large body of evidence consistently shows that the victims of domestic
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While some literature has been used from America and the United Kingdom, for the purposes of this review, research and studies conducted in Australia have been used as much as possible. The available research on domestic violence offenders, domestic violence orders and breached domestic violence orders predominantly finds that women are more likely to be victims, with the vast majority of offenders being males aged between 30 and 49 years old (Trimboli, 2015). The most common domestic violence offence is assault, followed by a breach of a domestic violence order or equivalent (Poynton & Trevena, 2016; Douglas, 2008; Douglas, 2015). Research shows that domestic violence can occur in many different relationship types, such as married or de facto couples, homosexual relationships and separated partners, occurring within a wide range of circumstances (Morgan & Chadwick, 2009). There is a vast amount of literature based around domestic violence incidences and rates of their occurrence, however literature based around the characteristics of offenders is less common. Although some early research suggested that formal sanctions had a deterrence effect on domestic violence offenders, attempts at replicating similar research have produced mixed results, with some studies suggesting that only certain types of domestic violence offenders are deterred by formal sanctions (Poynton &
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