A new study shows women are still disproportionately targeted by sexual assault, especially when they’re not incapacitated.
Researchers found that women were far more likely to be raped and sexually assaulted in situations in which the victim was unable to resist, or was not able to consent.
“We found that the most frequent victims of sexual assault were those who had no means to resist or who were incapacitated,” said study author and Harvard researcher Dr. Jessica Rinaldi.
The researchers also found that these assaults were more likely for women who had less control over the situation.
Rinaldi said that while some studies have found that “the most common perpetrators of sexual violence are women,” they tend to focus on male perpetrators.
But there are plenty of other factors that contribute to the high rate of sexual assaults.
“It’s not that women are inherently more likely than men to be victims of the most egregious forms of sexual aggression,” Rinali said.
In fact, “a woman’s chance of being raped is about one in 10, and for men, it’s about one out of every 100.”
“It does suggest that the more women experience sexual assault and victimization, the more likely it is that they’ll experience sexual abuse,” Rina said.
Researchers analyzed data from the National Incident-Based Reporting System, a large database of incidents involving victims in the United States.
Data on rape, sexual assault on campus, and sexual assault-related injuries was gathered from the federal government’s Office of the Inspector General and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“Our research indicates that sexual assault victims and perpetrators are not evenly distributed across racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic groups,” Rinas said.
Rinali’s study is just the latest to find that women, on average, are more likely victims of assault.
There’s also evidence that men who are the perpetrators are more aggressive, with men’s rates of assault rising faster than women’s.
In another recent study, Rinalis and her colleagues found that men are more violent and sexually aggressive when they are under the influence of alcohol or drugs, as well as when they aren’t.
This could lead to them “further exaggerating the threat of sexual harassment and assault and therefore potentially increasing the likelihood of being victimized,” Rinalsi said in a press release.
Follow Michael on Facebook and Twitter.