I’ve been counting and commemorating the UK women killed through male violence in 2012. But sometimes it’s important to focus on men. So I’ve been looking at the men who have been accused of killing women.
When I wrote the piece ‘Counting dead women’ earlier this year on 25th March, I wrote about 112 UK women killed through male violence in 2012, but in researching trial outcomes, that number needs to be revisited, to be increased to 114. The list of women’s names can be found in an earlier piece.
The 114 women were killed by 109 men, four men were multiple killers. One man killed three women, three men killed two.
So far, 39 men have been found guilty of murdering 41 women.
Ten men, who killed 12 women between them have killed themselves. Five men shot themselves after shooting seven women, one man drowned himself after drowning his partner, one man hanged himself after strangling his partner and of three men who stabbed women they were or had been married to, one killed himself through poisoning, one by slitting his own throat and one in what is described as a serious self-harm incident whilst in prison.
Nine men have been found not guilty or murder but guilty of manslaughter. Even the name manslaughter renders women invisible. Of the nine men found not guilty of murder, four have mental health problems; three of these men have been given indefinite sentences and the fourth is on an interim hospital order awaiting sentencing. Of the remaining five men found not guilty of murder but of the lesser charge of manslaughter, four of them have occupations listed as: ex- RAF, sculptor, ex-clerk and administrator. They were sentenced for four years, seven and a half years, five years and seven years and four months respectively. It’s beyond the scope of this piece and my resources to undertake a sophisticated class analysis looking at whether class can be seen to have a bearing on whether the killing of a woman results in a murder conviction or one of manslaughter; but those four occupations, especially when compared to those of the men found guilty of murder, suggest to me that a relationship between class and conviction cannot be discounted. The remaining man was found not guilty of murder but convicted of manslaughter with a sentence of only seven and a half years, despite killing a woman by stabbing/slashing her 11 times in what was described as a frenzied attack and a history of 25 court appearances for 44 offences, which include offences relating to domestic violence.
15 men killed their mothers, or have been accused of their killing. One man has been found guilty of killing his grandmother.
The average age of men who have been accused of killing UK women in 2012 is 39. The average age of the women killed is 44. If the men who killed their mothers (or grandmother) and those who preyed on elderly women because of their vulnerability are removed, the average age of male killers becomes 40 and that of women killed becomes 39.
It’s often the case that details of how men have chosen to kill women are not reported until the case has gone to trial, so the following list is still incomplete. However, from what has been reported to date, the primary means selected by men to cause death to women have been:
- Shot: 6 women
- Stabbed: 32 women
- Stabbed and beaten: 2 women
- Blunt force trauma: 6 women
- Strangled: 12 women
- Asphyxiation : 1 woman
- Drowning: 1 woman
- Hammer injuries: 2 women
- Stabbed/axed/slashed: 4 women
- Multiple injuries from kicking and beating: 9 women
- Burned: 1 woman
- Fire: 2 women
- Head Injuries: 10 women.
When we look at women killed by men, it is important that we look at men too.