The influence of substance use on intimate partner homicide : evidence from a Norwegian national 22-year cohort

Vitenskapelig artikkel
International Journal of Forensic Mental Health, 2019
Online / DOI:
Intimate partner homicides (IPH) are fatal violent attacks perpetrated by intimate partners. Research has indicated that substance use can co-occur in IPH. This study investigates the role of substance influence at the time of the crime and the prevalence of substance use in these cases. All IPHs in Norway from 1990–2012 (N = 177) were included. Quantitative data were extracted from court documents. Information concerning risk factors was drawn from three validated risk assessment instruments. Multivariate logistic regression analyses were conducted. For IPH committed by a substance-influenced perpetrator, there was an increased risk of the victim being substance influenced as well (OR = 11.697, CI = 4.259 – 31.631). Similarly, there was an association between perpetrators’ type of influence at the time of the crime and perpetrators’ substance misuse in general. Blood alcohol or other toxins were present in half of the perpetrators and 41% of the victims. Our results point to an association between IPH and substance use which needs to be established. Hence, this will have clinical and policy implications. Keywords: intimate partner homicide, substance use, alcohol, risk assessment, intimate partner violence