Battering Cycle Law and Legal Definition

Battering cycle refers to a three-phase cycle of violent behavior within a spousal relationship.

Relationships qualified by physical abuse tend to develop battering cycles. Violent behavior directed at the woman occurs in three distinct and repetitive stages that vary both in duration and intensity depending on the individuals involved. For an individual to be classified as battered, the couple must go through the battering cycle at least twice. This battering cycle consists of three phases: the tension-building phase, the explosion or acute battering incident, and the calm-loving respite marked by loving, kind and contrite behavior by the batterer. [State v. Worrall, 220 S.W.3d 346, 349-350 (Mo. Ct. App. 2007)].