Number of attacks on men by women doubles in two years

DOMESTIC abuse of men at female hands has risen dramatically, according to new figures from Scotland's largest force.

Strathclyde Police attended 3,139 incident in 2009-10, more than 50 per cent higher than the previous year, and more than double 2007-8. However, domestic abuse by women is still a minority compared to attacks in the home by men, which also continues to rise, up to 14,186 incidents last year.

There has been growing concern about male victims of domestic abuse and debate in the Scottish Parliament, along with high-profile campaigns by police forces, has encouraged people to come forward who were previously too ashamed to do so.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The Scottish Government has welcomed more men coming forward to report that they have been abused in the home.

However, Scottish Women's Aid has warned that in some cases female victims who try to defend themselves are being investigated as abusers.

Mariead Tagg, of Scottish Women's Aid in Glasgow, said: "There is a worrying trend of women involved in self-defence who end up getting arrested or charged themselves. These guys have learned how to use the system.

"I've had a case of a woman whose partner was a drunk abuser, who brought no end of trouble to her door.

"In one instance, he got her in a headlock and started to abuse her so - to defend herself - she bit his arm. When the police came, he denied everything and she was arrested."

Ms Tagg added: "There are some women who use violence in a relationship and that's unacceptable. No-one should suffer violence in the home."

By its nature, domestic violence is often not witnessed, making it hard to investigate.

Police admit that they will often investigate all parties when they arrive at the crime scene.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

However, they see abuse as a key priority and a crime that they are determined to stamp out.

Detective Chief Inspector Stuart Ferguson said: "Domestic abuse can happen to anyone. It does not discriminate and exists in all sections of our communities. Tackling domestic abuse is an absolute priority for Strathclyde Police.

"However, I believe that victims - regardless of gender - are becoming more confident about reporting incidents to police."

A spokesman for Victim Support Scotland said: "Our records also show that assaults on males are increasing in Strathclyde."

A Scottish Government spokesman said: "The effects of domestic abuse can be devastating and we are doing everything we can to tackle it."