Rape more common than smoking in the US

Author: Stephanie Kovalchik

The United States is experiencing an epidemic of sexual violence. New findings from the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS), a study launched by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in 2010, report that nearly 1 in 5 women are estimated to have been the victims of rape, defined as unwanted completed or attempted sexual penetration, including victims who did not have the capacity to give consent (owing to intoxication, for example). In almost all cases, the perpetrator was someone the victim knew (91.9%) and more than half of the time was their own partner. Young adulthood was the period of highest risk for first sexual victimization. For 80% of female victims, first rape occurred before age 25; for 42%, before age 18.

Although the lifetime prevalence of stalking was surprisingly less than the prevalence of non-consensual sexual contact, incidence estimates for the past year suggest that this trend could be changing as new communication technologies introduce new opportunities for sexual harassment. In 2010, the study estimates that 1.27 million American woman were raped--equivalent to one woman every 29 seconds--and 5.1 million were stalked--equivalent to one woman every 7 seconds.

These are a few of the key findings from the first annual report of what will be an ongoing, nationally representative survey of sexual violence in the US. The NISVS will be a great resource to public health researchers. Using the data collected by the NISVS, investigators will be able to monitor national and state-specific trends in the prevalence of sexual violence and stalking for the first time, to characterize the type of individuals who are at the highest risk of being a victim or a perpetrator of a sexual crime (whether physical or psychological), and to investigate the health consequences of sexual victimization.

The first NISVS report has already made national headlines because of the high prevalence of forced sex that was found. To give some perspective, the study's figures, if true, indicate that number of American women who have been raped is greater than the number who are current smokers. Skeptics might question whether such statistics could be for real. After all, some surveys have been made famous for getting it wrong, like the 1948 polls that were made the laughingstock of newly elected President Harry S. Truman after they predicted that Thomas E. Dewey would win the election. A survey that makes predictions risks being ridiculed (often very publicly) but it benefits from the opportunity of self-correction. Surveys that only intend to provide a snapshot of a population never get such feedback. As a consequence, the study designers can never know whether they have managed to avoid distortion.

For survey research, coverage and response are the most important ingredients to getting an accurate picture of the population of interest. Surveys with good coverage give every member of the target population a chance to participate. Convenience samples, like polls conducted at shopping malls, are notoriously poor at coverage. When random digit dialing was introduced in the 1970s, it was a breakthrough for survey research because it largely solved the coverage problem.  At that time, 90% of the US population had a landline telephone. So, with RDD and phone interviews, the question was no longer how to get a sample with good coverage for almost any region of the States but how to do it in a cost-effective way.

With the increasing popularity of new communication technologies in the 21st centruy, there is a growing number of Americans who will never be reached through a landline. The challenge that cell phone use in particular poses for survey research has been a focus of the work of Paul J. Lavrakas, former Chief Research Methodologist for Nielsen and contributing author to Advances in Telephone Survey Methodology. In a Public Opinion Quarterly article summarizing the outcomes of several gatherings of expert panels between 2003 and 2008, Larakas and colleagues conclude that "...surveying persons reached on cell phone numbers in the United States currently is a very complex undertaking if one wants to do it 'right,' i.e. to do it legally, ethically, and in ways that optimally allocate one's finite resources to gather the highest quality data, and to analyze and interpret those data accurately.'' Though daunting, to avoid non-coverage bias, it is an undertaking that has to be faced. The Pew Research Center estimates that for 25% of current households the only phone service used is a mobile phone.

The 2010 NISVS was a telephone survey. A strength of the design is that both landline and cell phones were included. Of the 16,507 completed interviews, 9,046 of the participants were on a cell phone and 7,461 were on a landline.

Response is the more concerning piece of the NISVS methodology. Using the American Association for Public Opinion Research Response Rate 4 formula, response rate is defined as the number of fully and partially completed interviews over all eligible cases, which is the sum total of cases with completed interviews, refusals, non-contacts, other spoken language than that used for the survey, and a correction factor for cases of unknown eligibility. The NISVS response rate was an underwhelming 27.5%. The majority of non-response was due to non-contacts. Although this rate is actually better than average for national telephone surveys, it still raises that question of whether the experience of sexual violence, stalking, and intimate partner violence is different among those Americans in the 72.5% of the sample who were either away from their phone or who looked at the unknown number coming in and chose not to answer.

If non-participation were a random event (a doubtful but much hoped for circumstance for survey researchers), then the NISVS participants would still provide a nationally representative sample of Americans. However, there is evidence that chance was not entirely indiscriminate when selecting the 27.5% of responders when one compares the NISVS sample and the US population on several socio-economic characteristics. In contrast to the US population, participants in the NISVS were more likely to have a college or advanced degree (36.4% versus 29.6%), more likely to be divorced (12.9% versus 10.3%), more likely to never have been married (30.2% and 26.1%), and more likely to have an annual household income that was below the federal poverty level (19.6% versus 12.1%).

The NISVS has an important public health message but it is unclear to which public it applies.

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i dont see why most of you are complaining what the article even says you were the one who clicked out the article so that makes you very stupid to sit and bash the hell out of it but once again men will probably never understand who detrimental rape really is my best friend was raped and she will never be the same ever again so all the guys bashing this what if it was your mom or sister or even your daughter that was raped.


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Title is lunacy 

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When it comes to a physical crime scene and the rilusteng forensics, investigators can ascertain that a crime took place and gather the necessary evidence. When it comes to digital crime, the evidence is often at the byte level, deep in the magnetics of digital media, initially invisible from the human eye. That is just one of the challenges of digital forensics, where it is easy to destroy crucial evidence, and often difficult to preserve correctly.For those looking for an authoritative guide, Digital Evidence and Computer Crime is an invaluable book that can be used to ensure that any digital investigation is done in a formal manner, that can ultimately be used to determine what happened, and if needed, used as evidence in court.Written by Eoghan Casey, a leader in the field of digital forensics, in collaboration with 10 other experts, the book's 24 chapters and nearly 800 pages provide an all-encompassing reference. Every relevant topic in digital forensics is dealt with in this extraordinary book. Its breadth makes it relevant to an extremely large reading audience: system and security administrators, incident responders, forensic analysts, law enforcement, lawyers and more.In the introduction, Casey writes that one of the challenges of digital forensics is that the fundamental aspects of the field are still in development. Be it the terminology, tools, definitions, standards, ethics and more, there is a lot of debate amongst professionals about these areas. One of the book's goals is to assist the reader in tackling these areas and to advance the field. To that end, it achieves its goals and more.Chapter 1 is appropriately titled Foundation of Digital Forensics, and provides a fantastic overview and introduction to the topic. Two of the superlative features in the book are the hundreds of case examples and practitioners' tips. The book magnificently integrates the theoretical aspects of forensics with real-world examples to make it an extremely decipherable guide.Casey notes that one of the most important advances in the history of digital forensics took place in 2008 when the American Academy of Forensic Sciences created a new section devoted to digital and multimedia sciences. That development advanced digital forensics as a scientific discipline and provided a common ground for the varied members of the forensic science community to share knowledge and address current challenges.In chapter 3 Digital Evidence in the Courtroom Casey notes that the most common mistake that prevents digital evidence from being admitted in court is that it is obtained without authorization. Generally, a warrant is required to search and seize evidence. This and other chapters go into detail on how to ensure that evidence gathered is ultimately usable in court.Chapter 6 Conducting Digital Investigations is one of the best chapters in the book. Much of this chapter details how to apply the scientific method to digital investigations. The chapter is especially rich with tips and examples, which are crucial, for if an investigation is not conducted in a formal and consistent manner, a defense attorney will attempt to get the evidence dismissed.Chapter 6 and other chapters reference the Association of Chief Police Officer's Good Practice Guide for Computer-Based Electronic Evidence as one of the most mature and practical documents to use when handling digital crime scenes. The focus of the guide is to help digital investigators handle the most common forms of digital evidence, including desktops, laptops and mobile devices. The Good Practice Guide is important in that digital evidence comes in many forms, including audit trails, application, badge reader and ISP and IDS logs, biometric data, application metadata, and much more. The investigator needs to understand how all of these work and interoperate to ensure that they are collecting and interpreting the evidence correctly.Chapter 9 Modus Operandi by Brent Turvey is a fascinating overview of how and why criminals commit crimes. He writes that while technologies and tools change, the underlying psychological needs and motives of the offenders and their associated criminal behavior has not changed through the ages.Chapter 10 Violent Crime and Digital Evidence is another extremely fascinating and insightful chapter. Casey writes that whatever the circumstances of a violent crime, information is key to determining and thereby understanding the victim-offender relationship, and to developing an ongoing investigative strategy. Any details gleaned from digital evidence can be important, and digital investigators must develop the ability to prioritize what can be overwhelming amounts of evidence.Chapter 13 Forensic Preservation of Volatile Data deals with the age-old forensic issue: to shut down or not to

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Oh please!  if that 's the case then I should see women screaming all over town every day.   i live in the south where smoking is common.  This is just another feminst article to make all men out to be bad guys.  I abhor violence and rape or anything like that.  These comments are just totally off base.  It seems there is a war on men and it also seems like women are going out of their way to make up false claims.  They are always looking behind every bush for a boogey man to get them.  Even professional psychological articles are now filled with misandirc comments by radical feminsits who hate men.  I don't deny rate happens, but not as often as this article claims.  Statsitcs can be manipulated however you like.


Enter your comment First of ALL, STATISTICS do NOT have a gender bias. In women 19% are SMOKERS but ovr 20% are RAPED. DID YOU NOT READ.... the perpetrator was someone the victim knew (91.9%) and more than half of the time was their own partner. Young adulthood was the period of highest risk for first sexual victimization. For 80% of female victims, first rape occurred before age 25; for 42%, before age 18. If you understood the impact of THAT, you would UNDERSTAND that THESE aren't the kind of rapes women rundown the street YELLING ABOUT. You OBVIOUSLY ARE from the south, typical I guess.

I don't think MOST men can understand the complexities of THIS kind of assault. Unfortunately, unless they get RAPED themselves, they NEVER will. People who make comments like this are the EXACT reason 2/3rds of rapes are & WILL never be reported... scrutiny by sexist ignorant men. DISGUSTING COMMENT, BUBBA

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rapist should be given the toughest punishment ....

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Evan Whitton

The justice system discriminates against abused women. The link below shows how the incidence of rape can be reduced.


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Do you not understand what "Rape more common than smoking" means, or are you being purposefully obtuse in order to make light of the issue? I'll assume the former, since the latter is too disgusting to consider. The study finding is not that individual INCIDENTS of rape take place as frequently as anytime anybody in America lights a cigarette. The finding is that an American woman is more likely to have been a victim of sexual violence at some point in her life than she is to be a smoker.

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"In almost all cases, the perpetrator was someone the victim knew (91.9%) and more than half of the time was their own partner."

I think you make a strong case for ending marriage and intimate relationships. The evidence is irrefutable. The best way for 91% of female victims to avoid rape is to avoid family friends and relationships with men.

Sounds like a strategy, well done.

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And let's not forget about male rape

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add to the fact that the GOP is defunding rape crisis centers all across this country, and creating laws that will force women or girls to have the rapist's baby, I ask you, take a stand, do not allow this war against women to continue. 

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