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Publications by Title

Advocates as Expert Witnesses: Weighing Benefits and Drawbacks

by Cindene Pezzell (December 2016)

​Guides community-based domestic and/or sexual violence organizations deciding whether to offer expert witness services and, if providing expert services, how to maximize the benefits for both the organization and the victims it serves. Includes a guide on developing related policy. [34 pages]

The Criminal Legal System Response to Domestic Violence: Questions and Debate

by Jane Sadusky (February 2020)

Examines some of what we know and don't know about the criminal legal system's impact on domestic violence, particularly the impact of arrest and police response on survivor's safety and well-being.  Offers sources and links for readers who want to go deeper. [39 pages]

Domestic Violence Expert Testimony: Legal Settings and Issues

by Cindene Pezzell (December 2016)

​Provides practicing and potential experts with basic information about the role of domestic and sexual violence expert witnesses, different types of expert testimony, and the fundamental mechanics of the court systems in which domestic violence experts most routinely testify.

[27 pages]


Domestic Violence Expert Witnesses: Immigration Proceedings

by Noël Busch-Armendariz and Edna Yang (December 2016)

Provides practice tips, basic information about immigration law relevant to victims of interpersonal violence, a sample expert report, and a list of helpful citations for expert witnesses and attorneys who work on behalf of victims of interpersonal violence involved in immigration proceedings. [37 pages]

Domestic Violence Expert Witnesses: Overcoming Challenges in Battered Women's Self-Defense Cases

by Karla Fischer (December 2016)

​Provides information, tips, and strategies on areas of expert testimony that can be crucial in securing fair outcomes in battered women's self-defense cases. Helpful for all defense team members working on a battered woman's homicide case, including experts (both experienced and novice), defense attorneys, and other practitioners.  [54 pages]

Domestic Violence Expert Witnesses: Tips to Help Prepare for your First Case

by Scott Miller and Melissa Scaia (December 2016)

​Provides tips, references, and guidance for new domestic violence expert witnesses and others who may be interested in becoming an expert witness. Written from the perspective of experts who testify on behalf of the prosecution. [36 pages]

Got Justice? Options for Prosecutors When Battered Women Fight Back

by Mary E. Asmus (May 2017)

​Offers ideas and suggestions for prosecutors seeking just results in cases where the defendant is a victim of battering. Encourages practitioners not to assume a "seen one, them all" attitude toward such cases, and to find a nuanced response appropriate to the circumstances of each defendant. [31 pages]

In Their Own Words: Victims of Battering Talk About Being Arrested and Convicted

​by Melissa Scaia (May 2017)

​Presents the findings of a series of focus groups and interviews with female victims of battering who had been convicted of domestic-violence-related crimes against their intimate partners. [23 pages]

Issues to Consider When Facilitating Groups with Battered Women in Jail or Prison

​by Andrea Bible (March 2011)

Explores issues advocates should consider when facilitating a group with victims of battering in jail or prison, including the realities of working inside correctional facilities, and offers potential topics to address in such groups. [59 pages]

The Impact of Parental Kidnapping Laws and Practice on Domestic Violence Survivors

​by National Clearinghouse for the Defense of Battered Women staff
(August 2005)

​Explores the role that domestic violence plays in a high percentage of parental kidnapping cases and the need to illuminate that role for a fair applications of justice. [41 pages]

Knowledge into Action: Resources & Tools for Change

​by Jane Sadusky
(June 2020)

​Serves as a companion piece to Lessons from the Field (below).  Draws from the large and dynamic body of resources and tools related to ending mass incarceration, centering racial justice in communities and institutions, and creating alternatives to the criminal legal system. [15 pages]

Lessons from the Field: Talking About Mass Incarceration, Racial Justice, and Alternatives to Reliance on the Criminal Legal System

​by Jane Sadusky with Sue Osthoff
(June 2020)

Draws on conversations held between 2016 and 2019 with advocates from anti-domestic and sexual violence state coalitions, national resources centers, and community-based organizations to identify key themes, grounding philosophies and approaches. The resources and tools found in Knowledge into Action (above) are a companion to these lessons.  [12 pages]

Petitioning for Funds for Domestic Violence Expert Witnesses in Defense Cases

by Quetita Cavero

(November 2020)

Securing funds for expert services in cases with indigent defendants can be very challenging despite state and federal constitutional mandates, but often, attorneys cannot provide effective assistance of counsel without doing so.  This piece provides an overview of counsel’s constitutional duty to secure expert assistance, the scope of the government’s obligation to provide funds to defendants for expert services, and how counsel for indigent defendants may petition the court for funds for a domestic violence expert.  [40 pages]

Plea Bargains

by National Clearinghouse for the Defense of Battered Women Staff (Last updated December 2018)

Includes questions a defendant may want to ask her attorney when considering a plea. Although written for primarily for defendants, it can help advocates better understand some of the complexities of pleas. [3 pages]

Three Formerly Incarcerated Women Talk About Reentry

Adapted by National Clearinghouse for the Defense of Battered Women staff (September 2016)

​Adapts an NCDBW webinar of three formerly incarcerated advocates/activists sharing their experiences of reentry and includes the speakers' insights and suggestions for advocates and other practitioners working with reentering survivors. [13 pages]

A Toolkit for Systems Advocacy for Victims of Battering Charged with Crimes

​by Sue Osthoff and Jane Sadusky (December 2016)

Provides ideas, strategies, and techniques for addressing the needs and challenges related to making victims of battering charged with crimes visible and central in a community’s response to battering. Includes resources, references, as advocacy organization survey, and a data collection workbook. [147 pages] 

The Use of Expert Testimony on Battering and Its Effects in Criminal Cases:  Examining Case Law from 1994-2016

by Cindene Pezzell (December 2018)

Study based on published U.S. state and federal criminal cases from 1994-2016.  Discusses defense and prosecution use of expert testimony, how trial courts ruled on expert testimony proffers, how appellate courts ruled on issues related to expert testimony, the impact of admissibility and reliability rules on the admission of expert testimony, and other factors.  [78 pages including appendices]

Victimized Again: How the Reentry Process Perpetuates Violence Against Survivors of Domestic Violence

​by Courtney Cross (October 2013)

Describes how community supervision can decrease safety and increase violence for reentering victims of battering by eliminating or limiting viable options. [25 pages]

Victims of Battering with Concurrent Open Criminal Charges and Civil Protection Cases: Considerations for Community-Based Advocates and Civil Attorneys

by National Clearinghouse for the Defense of Battered Women Staff (December 2016)

Highlights some of the legal risks faced by victims of battering who are coping with criminal charges and negotiating civil court proceedings at the same time, and suggests approaches to weighing those risks.

[17 pages]

When Community-Based Advocates Testify as Experts: Understanding and Explaining Trauma and its Effects

by Linda Barnard and Andrea Bible (December 2014)

​Uses a "Q & A" format to help advocates who testify as expert witnesses understand and explain trauma and trauma responses of victims of battering and other forms of violence. Includes an extensive bibliography. [40 pages]

When Victims of Battering Reenter Their Communities After Jail or Prison: A Compilation of Resources for Addressing Civil Legal Issues

by National Clearinghouse for the Defense of Battered Women staff (November 2016)​

Written primarily for civil attorneys working with returning victims of battering, this paper outlines civil legal and quasi-legal barriers and ways to address them. Includes a compilation of resources relevant to reentry available via the Internet. [46 pages]

Working with Battered Women in Jail: A Manual for Community-Based Battered Women's Advocates

​by National Clearinghouse for the Defense of Battered Women staff (November 2009)​

Provides information and strategies to help community-based advocates provide effective and holistic support to incarcerated victims of battering. [80 pages]

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