An in-depth analysis of a decade of killings of women in 47 major U.S. cities, including San Diego, reveals that almost half those women were murdered by an intimate partner.
A closer look at homicide data in San Diego and four other cities found that 36 percent of the men accused of those deaths were publicly known to be a potential threat to their partner before the fatal attack.
Those are the most significant findings of a new investigation by the Washington Post.
According to the Post's report, 36 percent of 280 men implicated in a domestic killing in San Diego, Forth Worth, Las Vegas, Oklahoma City and St. Louis had a previous restraining order against their victims or had been convicted of domestic abuse or a violent crime, including murder.
The Post also found that murders committed by intimate partners can be especially brutal because they often involve stabbings, strangulation and beatings.
Data reviewed by the Post reveals that nearly 25 percent of the 2,051 women killed by intimate partners were stabbed, compared with fewer than 10 percent in all homicides. Violent choking is also almost unique to fatal domestic attacks on women, the Post reported. Six percent of women killed by intimate partners were strangled, compared to fewer than 1 percent in all homicides.
The Post story also reports on efforts in San Diego to reduce domestic violence murders.
"While some jurisdictions are focusing on precursors to homicide, San Diego County has made headway in its focus on domestic violence by also carefully examining the killings afterward," the Post reports. The newspaper described the work done by the county's "Fatality Review Team," which attempts to determine where the deadly relationship "went awry."
The story also credits the city of San Diego's Family Justice Center, which opened in 2002, and the establishment of a domestic violence unit by San Diego Police.
"(SDPD) was on the leading edge of programs that are now commonplace around the county..." the Post said. "The San Diego County District Attorney's office received a grant last year to create an algorithm to predict which cases have the potential to turn fatal."