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Domestic Violence Issues with Military Spouses

If you are a victim of domestic violence and your spouse serves in the military, then you need to take action right away. In most cases, violent spouses won’t attempt to amend their behavior just because they feel like it. In fact, abusive spouses may continue to beat, abuse, or demean their husbands and wives long into the future. Thankfully, you don’t have to live with the pain and sorrow that comes with abuse.

Without intervention, domestic violence cases typically get worse. If you have been harmed and wounded by an abusive spouse, then chances are that you can report him or her to the police. As a military member, there is a chance that your spouse will be court martialed because of this offense. This means that he or she may be issued a dishonorable discharge and other punishments for displaying poor character in this way.

If you are a victim of domestic violence by a military spouse, rest assured that you are not alone. In fact, you are one of many people that are struggling through a life of fear and heartbreak. The Department of Defense has seen so many cases of domestic violence in recent years that they have made it a specific concern. Because domestic violence is a threat to a spouse’s career, most military spouses are worried to report the abuse. They often will go to authorities with a complaint something like this: “I want my spouse to stop hitting me but I don’t want him or her to get in trouble.”

In most cases, husbands abuse the wives in military relationships, but this isn’t always the case. When the abuser is a civilian, the military has no control over the matter. But when they abuser is the military member, the military can take the crime to the justice system and the family advocacy system. Both of these systems are separate, which means that a ruling in one court will, not affect a ruling in another. Family advocacy is considered an identification, intervention and treatment program, which means that there are no punishments involved. On the other hand, the justice system allows men and women to be punished for their crimes.

Typically, the military starts with a family advocacy investigation and will look into the situation. If the domestic violence has taken place off base, then this may cause the military to get local police involved. If it happens on base, then militia investigators will probe the situation. Regulations require that military and DOD officials report any suspicion of family violence to Family Advocacy, no matter how small. Eventually, the information that is gathered can be used in a military justice trial to determine whether or not the soldier should be punished. Learn more about domestic violence in the military by contacting an attorney at Cutter & Lax today!


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