March 4, 1995 in Nation/World

Court Rules Woman Deserved Beatings

Compiled From Wire Services

A man who said he beat his girlfriend because she constantly berated him was acquitted because a court ruled the woman deserved it.

Women’s groups called the ruling a setback for Norway, which prides itself on being a model of gender equality.

“I can’t imagine that this ruling would be allowed to stand… It would be a step back to a bygone era,” said Ase Klundelien, head of the Norwegian Equal Rights Council.

A panel of judges in Bergen ruled this week, “The beatings must be seen in light of N.N. (the woman) more or less making a lifestyle out of provoking and irritating the accused so that he lost control.”

Two lay judges said she “did not get more than she had to expect based on her behavior,” according to the Oslo newspaper Dagbladet. The panel’s professional judge dissented.

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