Ana Cabrera on Why Sexual Assaults Go Unreported

Ana Cabrera on Why Sexual Assaults Go Unreported


A new tweet campaign has taken to explaining why sexual assault victims delay reporting the crime.

Following the tweet by Trump which called into question the validity of Christine Blasey Ford’s sexual assault accusation against Supreme Court pick, Brett Kavanaugh, new outrage has arisen for why sexual assault victims do not report the crime readily. The response on Twitter has taken up life in a #Whyididn’treport tweet campaign, patterned after the #Metoo campaign.

According to the tweet, Trump attempted to discredit Ford’s claim by saying; ‘I ask that she bring those filings forward so that we can learn date, time and place.’ A delay in the filing of charges, he believes, may be proof enough that nothing ‘bad’ occurred.

In response, many have expressed their disapproval of Trump’s tweets. CNN Reporter, Ana Cabrera reports on why more than half of all sexual assaults go unreported.

‘At the very least, this is an ill-informed question being asked by the president,’ Cabrera said.

According to facts from the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, 1 in 5 women will be raped at some point in their lives. When it comes to the broader context of sexual assault, the statistics are even graver. 1 in 3 women in the U.S will experience some form of sexual violence in their lifetime.

The report goes on to show that in 8 out of 10 cases of rape, the victim knew the perpetrator. On the issue of actually reporting sexual crimes, the numbers show a bleak reality.

Sixty-three percent of sexual assault are not reported to the police. And when they are reported, ninety-nine percent of rape perpetrators will go free according to Race, Abuse and Incest Network.

The National Sexual Violence Resource Center reports that there are only about 2% – 10% of false report sexual assault cases.

The reports are very revealing. They show why victims delay reporting if at all.

The most oft reason is fear; fear of retaliation, fear of reliving the ordeal, fear for their already bruised dignity, fear of not being believed, the shame and guilt that comes from being in a wrong place at the wrong time etc.

And sometimes the delay is also because of the struggle to accept what happened. The thought that maybe if they do not share the account, they may finally forget it ever happened, reports Cabrera.


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