The PJ Tatler

About That 'One-in-Five' Rape Statistic...

It’s not true. Not according to the Justice Department:

A new report on sexual assault released today by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) officially puts to bed the bogus statistic that one in five women on college campuses are victims of sexual assault. In fact, non-students are 25 percent more likely to be victims of sexual assault than students, according to the data. And the real number of assault victims is several orders of magnitude lower than one-in-five.

The full study, which was published by the Bureau of Justice Statistics, a division within DOJ, found that rather than one in five female college students becoming victims of sexual assault, the actual rate is 6.1 per 1,000 students, or 0.61 percent (instead of 1-in-5, the real number is 0.03-in-5). For non-students, the rate of sexual assault is 7.6 per 1,000 people.

You can read the full report at this link.

Even more striking is that according to the BJS data, the likelihood of sexual assault has actually been trending downward across the board since 1997.

While that downward trend is obviously good news, the fact that there’s anything to measure is not. Sexual assault is an awful crime, and even one instance is too many, regardless of the trend. That’s why it’s so important for victims to report the crimes when they happen, so law enforcement authorities can find the perpetrators and hold them accountable. Perpetrators of sexual assault who are never reported are obviously far more likely to victimize even more people.

Absolutely right. Rape victims should go to the police, immediately, and the rapists put away for a very long time.