U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Missing Voices: Patterns of Battered Women's Satisfaction With the Criminal Legal System

NCJ Number
Violence Against Women Volume: 8 Issue: 2 Dated: February 2002 Pages: 181-205
Date Published
February 2002
25 pages

This article reviews battered women's satisfaction with the criminal legal system.


The article describes the response of the police, prosecutors, and the courts to violence against women. It identifies factors that influence women's sense of satisfaction, including the degree to which the women perceive they have some control over how the criminal legal system handles their cases. The research sought to determine how satisfied survivors were with each component of the criminal legal system process and outcome, and what factors about the survivor's situation and about the criminal legal system influenced that satisfaction. Participants in the research study were 178 female survivors of intimate male partner violence whose assailants were charged with a crime against them. The study demonstrated the complexity of women's experiences with the criminal legal system. This system is only one of many with the potential to assist women with abusive partners and to hold assailants accountable for their actions. The study concluded that appropriate, coordinated responses by many systems were necessary to adequately address violence against women. Tables, notes references

Date Published: February 1, 2002