News coverage of domestic violence usually misses the point, says Jane Aoyama-Martin

With all the recent news coverage focused on NFL player Jovan Belcher’s murder-suicide, what about Kasandra Perkins, the woman he killed? Jane Aoyama-Martin, executive director of the Pace Women’s Justice Center located at Pace Law School, said it is not uncommon for the victim’s story to get lost in the sensationalism of the crime.

“We tend to hear, ‘Oh, he’s under stress’ or ‘he cracked.’ Domestic violence is a pattern of behavior that doesn’t lend itself to the six o’clock news treatment,” Aoyama-Martin told Loop 21.

With so much of the spotlight on the abuser, Aoyama-Martin said typical news coverage of domestic violence stories usually fails to examine the real issues involved. Additionally, since the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) is currently stalled in Congress, Aoyama-Martin said effective coverage could help put pressure on Congress to renew VAWA.

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