Domestic Abuse Fatality Review (DAFR)


The Louisiana Domestic Abuse Fatality Review (LA-DAFR) Panel was established in 2021 via Louisiana R.S. 40:2024.1-2024.6. LA-DAFR is coordinated through the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH), Office of Public Health (OPH), Bureau of Family Health (BFH). 

To learn more about the DAFR Panel and its functions, visit

What We Know

Domestic abuse, also referred to as intimate partner violence (IPV), domestic violence, or dating abuse, is a pattern of abusive behaviors used by one partner to gain and maintain power and control over another partner in an intimate relationship. Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, psychological, technological actions or threats of actions, or other patterns of coercive behavior that influence another person within an intimate partner relationship. It can happen to anyone regardless of race, age, sexual orientation, religion, sex, or gender identity and affects people of all socioeconomic backgrounds and education levels.

Domestic abuse is a significant health problem and it has lifelong consequences. According to the Louisiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence (LCADV), Louisiana consistently leads the nation in domestic homicides and has ranked among the top five almost every year since 1997. The Violence Policy Center 2020 study, When Men Murder Women, ranked Louisiana fifth in the United States for women murdered by men. This report shows that homicides in which the victim-to-offender relationship could be identified, 98 percent of female victims (39 out of 40) were murdered by someone they knew. Of the victims who knew their offenders, 56 percent (22 victims) were wives, common-law wives, ex-wives, or girlfriends of the offenders.

What Can Be Done

Domestic abuse and domestic abuse fatalities are preventable. Together, using our roles as healthcare providers, criminal and civil justice systems, domestic violence service providers, community members, and policymakers we can create solutions and keep Louisiana families safe at home. For information, recommendations, and more ways we can aid and support victims of domestic violence, see the latest DAFR Report and supplemental materials and resources listed below.

  • Louisiana Statewide Domestic Violence Hotline: 1.888.411.1333 – Free. Confidential. 24 Hours
  • National Domestic Violence Hotline: Call 1.800.799.SAFE (7233), Click Here to Chat Live, or Text “START” to 88788
  • Plan for Safety: Create a safety plan and find resources through the National Domestic Violence Hotline.
For any questions, please contact:

Dawn N. Joseph
Domestic Abuse Fatality Review Coordinator

Kristen Sanderson, MPH
Violence & Injury Prevention Program Manager