The death of Shanquella Robinson is being investigated as femicide. This is what it means.

The death of Shanquella Robinson is being investigated as a femicide, a term that many Americans are unfamiliar with because, while being a global issue, this gender-motivated crime has not been classified by US legislation.

The featured video is from a previous report.

Robinson, a 25-year-old North Carolina student, died in October while vacationing in a fancy rental house in the Mexican state of Baja California Sur.

Mexican prosecutors are attempting to extradite one of Robinson’s acquaintances as a suspect in the case. Last Monday, Daniel de la Rosa, the attorney general for Baja California Sur, notified local media that an arrest warrant had been issued in connection with Robinson’s case for the crime of femicide, or the killing of a woman because of her gender.

No one has been charged in the case, and the names of Robinson’s acquaintances have not been revealed.

Unlike Mexico and other Latin American countries, the United States does not have a legislation that distinguishes femicide from homicide, which numerous experts believe does not mean that killings against women are not occurring at alarming rates in the United States.

“Femicides happen all the time in the US, and many famous murder cases that we all have in our consciousness are actually femicide, but we don’t put that label on them,” said Dabney P. Evans, director of Emory University’s Center for Humanitarian Emergencies and expert on violence against women.

As the investigation into Robinson’s death continues, here’s what you need to know about what constitutes femicide in Mexico, why gender-based violence is a global problem, and why researchers believe that incorporating femicide into US law could benefit women.

Mexico is in the grip of a catastrophe.

Femicide is the most severe kind of gender-based violence (GBV), described as “intentional murder of women because they are women.”

Femicides are classified into two types: intimate and non-intimate femicide. The former relates to the murder of women by current orex-partners, whilst the latter refers to the murder of women by those with whom they did not have an intimate relationship.

Under most nations, femicide is treated the same as homicide in criminal law, however Mexico is one of at least 16 countries that has designated femicide as a distinct crime.

If convicted, offenders in Mexico face up to 60 years in prison under federal law. In Mexico, the distinction between homicide, or unlawful killing, and femicide varies by state.

There could be a history of sexual or non-sexual assault and threats, or “if the victim was in community, for example, and if she was killed and her body was in public,” according to Beatriz Garca Nice, who directs the Wilson Center’s work on gender-based violence.

Shanquella Robinson Video News

A video that has been circulating online in recent weeks appears to show Robinson and another individual getting into a physical struggle inside a room. Bernard Robinson, her father, told CNN that his daughter is seen in the video being pushed to the ground and assaulted on the head.

It’s unclear when the video was shot or if it represents the moment Robinson got the injuries that killed her.

While there is legislation in Mexico banning femicide, “the main problem is the execution,” according to Garca Nice. According to her, the number of cases of gender-based violence is underreported in national statistics, and the law is “under executed” in the judicial system.

According to Garca Nice, over 95% of femicide crimes in Mexico go unpunished. “If you commit femicide, there is very little likelihood that you will be prosecuted. And this is one of the reasons why rates remain quite high.”

According to Alejandra Marquez, an assistant professor of Spanish at Michigan State University with a focus on gender and sexuality in Latin America and the Caribbean, the “feminicidos” crisis in Mexico began several decades ago and first gained national attention in the 1990s when hundreds of women were killed in the Mexican border city of Ciudad Juarez.

“There used to be this idea, especially in central Mexico, where it was like ‘women are getting killed over there at the border,’ but because it’s expanded all over the country, it’s sort of become this phenomenon that can no longer be ignored,” Marquez told CNN.

“When you’re in Mexico, it’s part of day-to-day conversation,” Marquez continued.

According to experts, more needs to be done in the United States.

Experts claim that disproportionate homicides of Black women, the situation of missing or killed Indigenous people, and the tragic shootings of women at Atlanta-area spas in 2021 are instances of cases that could be characterized as femicides.

“As a society, we must acknowledge that these are not isolated incidents. These are, in fact, linked to patterns of masculine aggression, and we need to think more carefully about how to prevent this type of violence “Evans, an Emory University expert, stated

According to the Violence Policy Center’s study of homicide data, 2,059 women in the United States were slain by men in 2020, with 89% knowing their perpetrators.

According to Evans, femicide legislation in the United States would not eliminate the issues of toxic masculinity, patriarchy, and misogyny that contribute to gender-based violence, but it would “allows us to talk about this phenomenon” and prevent it from happening.

There are current laws in the United States that address gender-based violence, as well as procedures to track domestic abuse, but they are faulty.

The federal hate crime statute applies to violent or property crimes motivated in part by prejudice against race, religion, handicap, sexual orientation, ethnicity, gender, or gender identity. The definition of a hate crime varies by state, and several states do not cover gender hatred.

The Violence Against Women Act was reauthorized earlier this year by federal lawmakers. The Act is intended to protect and help survivors of domestic abuse, sexual assault, and stalking, all of which have been identified as precursors to femicide.

President Joe Biden stated that more needs to be done to address the issue during a March event commemorating the act’s passage.

“Abuse should not occur, regardless of gender or sexual orientation. Period. And if they do, they should have access to the resources and support they require. And we’re not going anywhere.”

Gender-based violence is a worldwide issue.

According to a UN report released last week, an estimated 81,100 women and girls were purposefully killed around the world last year, with almost 56% of them being killed by intimate partners or family members.

According to the research, it is difficult to explain the true scale of gender-based violence because about four out of every ten homicides reported by authorities lack “no contextual information to allow them to be identified and counted as gender-related killings.”

“These rates are alarmingly high, as we can see; however, that’s the tip of the iceberg,” said Kalliopi Mingeirou, the chief of UN Women’s Ending Violence Against Women Section, one of the entities that created the study.

Police, according to Mingeirou, cannot adequately investigate femicide if it is not legally designated as such. Other obstacles to preventing and stopping femicides include a lack of resources and training for officials expected to enforce legislation.

“What women and girls deserve around the world is to have a world that respects their choices, that respects their rights,” Mingeirou added. “We require equal rights. We have a fundamental right to be free of violence because we can achieve and prosper in this world if we are free of violence and harassment.”

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