My husband, a soldier, hits and abuses me - Evewoman
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My husband, a soldier, hits and abuses me

Wife batteryDear Harold,

I have been married for three years to a military officer who does not respect me. I am at peace when he is on official duty as he assaults me physically and verbally at the slightest provocation. The assaults have impacted negatively on my personality, as it occasionally happens in our neighbours’ watch. Recently, he started claiming that I sleep around when he is out of the country on assignments and beats me up when I challenge him to prove his allegations. I do not want to walk away from the marriage just yet, as we have a two-year-old daughter whom I believe needs the love and care of both parents. However, I would appreciate legal advice on whether I can sue him.

Rose, Nairobi.

Dear Rose,

The battery by your husband amounts to a criminal offence, regardless of his status as a military officer. It is serious and has led to death of many spouses, especially because the violence tends to increase in frequency and severity if action is not taken against the perpetrator. However, some wives believe that their husbands beat them because they love them. 

Legally, violent acts have nothing to do with love and never a subject for agreement and settling out of court. Moreover, many people view domestic violence as a private dispute but the law states otherwise.

Therefore, you should report the matter to the nearest police station and obtain a P3 form to be filled by a medic and used as evidence in court. According to the Criminal Procedure Code, cases of assault can attract jail terms of between one to five years, with or without corporal punishment, depending on injuries inflicted on the complainant.

Got a family related legal issue? Ask the lawyer on [email protected]

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