Last updated May, 2010

Legislation should provide serious penalties for strangulation.  Many domestic violence victims have experienced some form of attempted strangulation, which has often been discounted as “choking.” This form of abuse can have serious physical and psychological consequences, and is often a precursor to deadly violence.

Also, legislation should provide serious penalties for stove burnings, other burnings and acid assaults. Drafters should ensure that offenses using dangerous weapons, fire, acid or oil to inflict injury or death are a specific and serious crime. For example, Article 324 of the Bangladesh Penal Code punishes voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means: “Whoever, except in the case provided for by section 334, voluntarily causes hurt by means of any instrument for shooting, stabbing or cutting, or any instrument which, used as a weapon of offence, is likely to cause death, or by means of fire or any heated substance, or by means of any poison of any corrosive substance, or by means of any explosive substance or by means of any substance which it is deleterious to the human body to inhale, to swallow, or to receive into the blood, or by means of any animal, shall be punished with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both.”

Promising Practice:  A provision of Minnesota, USA, law (Minn. Stat §609.2247) which makes strangulation of a family or household member a specific and serious crime. 

See: The Impact of the Minnesota Felony Strangulation Law. This report examines the impact the law has had on victim safety, defendant accountability, and public awareness. 

See:  Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women, “Facts About Intimate Partner Strangulation” (2009); and Minnesota Coalition for Battered Women, “Information about Murder-Suicide” (2009.