Who are the Victims?
Breakdown by Gender and Age
1 out of every 6 American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime (14.8% completed rape; 2.8% attempted rape).1
17.7 million American women have been victims of attempted or completed rape.1
9 of every 10 rape victims were female in 2003.2
Lifetime rate of rape /attempted rape for women by race:1
- All women: 17.6%
- White women: 17.7%
- Black women: 18.8%
- Asian Pacific Islander women: 6.8%
- American Indian/Alaskan women: 34.1%
- Mixed race women: 24.4%
About 3% of American men — or 1 in 33 — have experienced an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime.1
- From 1995-2010, 9% of rape and sexual assault victims were male.10
- 2.78 million men in the U.S. have been victims of sexual assault or rape.1
15% of sexual assault and rape victims are under age 12.3
- 29% are age 12-17.
- 44% are under age 18.3
- 80% are under age 30.3
- 12-34 are the highest risk years.
- Girls ages 16-19 are 4 times more likely than the general population to be victims of rape, attempted rape, or sexual assault.
7% of girls in grades 5-8 and 12% of girls in grades 9-12 said they had been sexually abused.4
- 3% of boys grades 5-8 and 5% of boys in grades 9-12 said they had been sexually abused.
82% of all juvenile victims are female.6
The year in a male’s life when he is most likely to be the victim of a sexual assault is age 4. A female’s year of greatest risk is age 14.6
One in nine girls and one in 53 boys under the age of 18 experience sexual abuse or assault at the hands of an adult.11
In 1995, local child protection service agencies identified 126,000 children who were victims of either substantiated or indicated sexual abuse.5
- Of these, 75% were girls.
- Nearly 30% of child victims were between the age of 4 and 7.
Every 8 minutes, Child Protective Service responds to a report of sexual abuse.12
93% of juvenile sexual assault victims know their attacker.6
- 34.2% of attackers were family members.
- 58.7% were acquaintances.
- Only 7% of the perpetrators were strangers to the victim.
For 80% of juvenile victims, the perpetrator was a parent. 6% were other relatives. 4% were unmarried partners of a parent. 5% were "other" (from siblings to strangers).13
On average during 1992-2001, American Indians age 12 or older experienced annually an estimated 5,900 rapes or sexual assaults.7
- American Indians were twice as likely to experience a rape/sexual assault compared to all races.
- Sexual violence makes up 5% of all violent crime committed against Indians (about the same as for other races).
- Offender/victim relationship: 41% stranger; 34% acquaintance; 25% intimate or family member.
Effects of Rape
Victims of sexual assault are:8
3 times more likely to suffer from depression.
6 times more likely to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder.
13 times more likely to abuse alcohol.
26 times more likely to abuse drugs.
4 times more likely to contemplate suicide.
Pregnancies Resulting from Rape
In 2012, 346,830 women were raped.9 According to medical reports, the incidence of pregnancy for one-time unprotected sexual intercourse is 5%. By applying the pregnancy rate to 346,830 female survivors, RAINN estimates that there were 17,342 pregnancies as a result of rape in 2012.
This calculation does not account for the following factors which could lower the actual number of pregnancies:
- Rape, as defined by the NCVS, is forced sexual intercourse. Forced sexual intercourse means vaginal, oral, or anal penetration by offender(s). This category includes incidents where the penetration is from a foreign object such as a bottle. Certain types of rape under this definition cannot cause pregnancy.
- Some victims of rape may be utilizing birth control methods, such as the pill, which will prevent pregnancy.
- Some rapists may wear condoms in an effort to avoid DNA detection.
- Vicims of rape may not be able to become pregnant for medical or age-related reasons.
This calculation does not account for the following factors which could raise the actual number of pregnancies:
- Medical estimates of a 5% pregnancy rate are for one-time, unprotected sexual intercourse. Some victimizations may include multiple incidents of intercourse.
- Because of methodology, NCVS does not measure the victimization of Americans age 12 or younger. Rapes of these young people could results in pregnancies not accounted for in RAINN's estimates.