Rick Brundrett of The State continued the paper's investigation in South Carolina domestic violence cases, finding that "more than a third of the most serious criminal domestic violence cases statewide have been dropped in the four years since South Carolina's attorney general ordered prosecutors not to drop any unless absolutely necessary." That amounts to nearly 4,000 charges since July 1, 2001. Another 1,400 charges were pleaded down. "Victim advocates said the high dismissal rates partly explain why the state has led the nation in recent years in the rate of women killed by men." This follows the paper's earlier work on pre-trial intervention.