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SC second in nation for female homicides

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SOUTH CAROLINA (WMBF) - South Carolina commonly ranks near the bottom of most lists, such as education, and a new report is ranking our state near the top of a list we're not too proud to be on.

The report from the Violence Policy Center concludes that based on 2010 statistics, South Carolina has the second highest rate of females murdered by men.

"We tend to minimize this type of violence," said Rape Crisis Center counselor Tina Toth. "We justify it as a family issue or a common thing that occurs."

Toth says many male-on-female homicides occur when situations involving domestic abuse go unchecked, and often it's tough to spot the signs of trouble or danger in a relationship.

"Isolation or withdrawal, or forcing people away from their loved ones or friends."

Coming in first on the list was Nevada with a female homicide rate of 2.62 per 100,000 women.

South Carolina's female homicide rate was 1.94, resulting from a total of 46 deaths. Finishing out the top ten, in order, are Tennessee, Louisiana, Virginia, Texas, New Mexico, Hawaii, Arizona and Georgia.

The average age of a female homicide victim in South Carolina in 2010 was 41 years old. Eleven percent of those women were over the age of 65.

In one hundred percent of the cases where the killer was identified, the female victim was killed by a male that she knew. Seventy percent of the offenders were either husbands, ex-husbands, common law husbands or boyfriends.

"My daughter, Buffy Marie, was murdered November 21st, 1995," said Linda Sneller of Not One More. "Her boyfriend, and father of her then three year old daughter, stabbed her 35 times."

Sneller works speaks out against domestic violence and says education on what to notice is important. But Sneller also stresses the importance of speaking out against acts of violence.

"Everybody's afraid to offend someone," she said. "The only people who will be offended are the abusers. Please, go ahead and offend them."

Falling even further down the list was North Carolina, ranked 21st, with a total of 64 female homicide victims and rate of 1.31.

Nationally, the rate of women killed by men in single victim/single offender instances was 1.22 per 100,000.

Copyright 2012 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

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