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Myth vs Fact


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Did You Know:

  • As many as 1 in 3 girls and 1 in 7 boys will be sexually abused at some point in their childhood.

  • Most perpetrators are acquaintances, but as many as 47% are family or extended family.

  • In as many as 93% of child sexual abuse cases, the child knows the person that commits the abuse.

  • Approximately 30% of cases are reported to authorities.

  • Approximately 1.8 million adolescents in the United States have been the victims of sexual assault.

  • 33% of sexual assaults occur when the victim is between the ages of 12 and 17.

  • 82% of all juvenile victims are female.

  • 69% of the teen sexual assaults reported to law enforcement occurred in the residence of the victim, the offender, or another individual.

  • Teens 16 to 19 years of age were 3 1/2 times more likely than the general population to be victims of rape, attempted rape, or sexual assault.

  • Approximately 1 in 5 female high school students report being physically and/or sexually abused by a dating partner.

  • Approximately 1 in 7 (13%) youth Internet users received unwanted sexual solicitations.

  • 4% of youth Internet users received aggressive solicitations, in which solicitors made or attempted to make offline contact with youth.

  • 9% of youth Internet users had been exposed to distressing sexual material while online.

  • 9.2% of cases of maltreatment of children in 2010 were classified as sexual abuse.

  • Over 63,000 cases of child sexual abuse were reported in 2010.

  • Predators seek youths vulnerable to seduction, including those with histories of sexual or physical abuse, those who post sexually provocative photos/videos, and those who talk about sex with unknown people online.

  • 1 in 25 youths received an online sexual solicitation in which the solicitor tried to make offline contact.

  • In more than one-quarter (27%) of incidents, solicitors asked youths for sexual photographs of themselves.

  • 15% of cell-owning teens (1217) say they have received sexually suggestive nude/seminude images of someone they know via text.

  • 4% of cell-owning teens (12 to 17) say that they have sent sexually suggestive nude/seminude messages to others via text message.

  • About 20 million out of 112 million women (18%) in the United States have been raped during their lifetime.

  • One study found that only 16% of all rapes were reported to law enforcement.

  • In 2006 alone, 300,000 college women (5.2%) were raped.

  • Among college women, about 12% of rapes were reported to law enforcement.

  • According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, National Criminal Victimization Survey, in 2010, there were 188,380 reported rapes or sexual assaults of a person 12 years or older.

  • In 2010, 12% of rapes and sexual assaults involved a weapon.

  • In 2010, 25% of the female victims of rape/sexual assault were victimized by strangers.

  • Children ages 12 to 15 have the highest percentage of sexual abuse, among all types of abuse, for children under 18 years of age.

  • It was estimated that about 90% of teens and young adults are online.

  • 89% of teens had a profile on a social-networking site (e.g., MySpace, Facebook).

  • 78% of teens post photos online and 80% send/receive pictures or videos on a computer.

  • 87% of teens have and use a cell phone and 13% had or used a smartphone.

  • 68% of teens have and use a laptop and 33% have and use a Web cam.

  • 22% of teen girls and 18% of teen boys have sent/posted nude or seminude pictures or videos of themselves.

  • 39% of all teens have sent sexually suggestive messages via text, e-mail, or instant-messaging service.

  • 38% of teen girls and 39% of teen boys say they have had sexually suggestive text messages or e-mails originally meant for someone else shared with them.

  • 44% of both teen girls and teen boys say it is common for sexually suggestive text messages to get shared with people other than the intended recipient.

  • 36% of teen girls and 39% of teen boys say it is common for nude or seminude photos to get shared with people other than the intended recipient.

  • 51% of teen girls say pressure from a guy is a reason girls send sexy messages or images; only 18% of teen boys cited pressure from female counterparts as a reason.

  • 15% of teens who have sent or posted nude/seminude images of themselves say they have done so to someone they knew only online.

  • When stating the reasons why they sent/posted suggestive messages or nude/seminude pictures/videos, 44% said it was in response to one that was sent to them.

  • Only 4% of teens reported they posted nude or seminude pictures/videos online (e.g., on MySpace, on Facebook, in a blog).

  • Sending and posting nude or seminude photos or videos starts at a young age and becomes even more frequent as teens (ages 13 to 19) become young adults (ages 20 to 26).

  • 1 in 5 girls and 1 in 20 boys is a victim of child sexual abuse.

  • Self-report studies show that 20% of adult females and 5-10% of adult males recall a childhood sexual assault or sexual abuse incident.

  • During a one-year period in the U.S., 16% of youth ages 14 to 17 had been sexually victimized.


  • Over the course of their lifetime, 28% of U.S. youth ages 14 to 17 had been sexually victimized.


  • Children are most vulnerable to Chilhood Sexuak Abuse between the ages of 7 and 13.


  • According to a 2003 National Institute of Justice report, 3 out of 4 adolescents who have been sexually assaulted were victimized by someone they knew well.


  • A Bureau of Justice Statistics report shows 1.6 % (sixteen out of one thousand) of children between the ages of 12-17 were victims of rape/sexual assault.


  • A study conducted in 1986 found that 63% of women who had suffered sexual abuse by a family member also reported a rape or attempted rape after the age of 14. Recent studies in 2000, 2002, and 2005 have all concluded similar results.


  • Children who had an experience of rape or attempted rape in their adolescent years were 13.7 times more likely to experience rape or attempted rape in their first year of college.


  • A child who is the victim of prolonged sexual abuse usually develops low self-esteem, a feeling of worthlessness and an abnormal or distorted view of sex. The child may become withdrawn and mistrustful of adults, and can become suicidal.


  • Children who do not live with both parents as well as children living in homes marked by parental discord, divorce, or domestic violence, have a higher risk of being sexually abused.


  • In the vast majority of cases where there is credible evidence that a child has been penetrated, only between 5 and 15% of those children will have genital injuries consistent with sexual abuse.


  • Child sexual abuse is not solely restricted to physical contact; such abuse could include noncontact abuse, such as exposure, voyeurism, and child pornography.


  • Compared to those with no history of sexual abuse, young males who were sexually abused were five times more likely to cause teen pregnancy, three times more likely to have multiple sexual partners and two times more likely to have unprotected sex.


  • Of the children victimized in 2011, thirteen percent had at least one victimization known to police while 46% had one known to school, police, or medical authorities.


  • 42% of school officials knew about victimization episodes compared to the13% known to police and 2% known to medical professionals.


  • Some perpetrators are female. It is estimated that women are the abusers in about 14% of cases reported among boys and 6% of cases reported among girls.


  • Approximately one-third of offenders are themselves juveniles.


  • 23% of reported cases of child sexual abuse are perpetrated by individuals under the age of 18.


  • Only 14% of children who suffered sexual abuse were violated by an unknown perpetrator.


  • 60% of children are sexually abused by someone in their social circle. Hence, the phrase Stranger Danger is misleading.


  • Every 2 minutes, another American is sexually assaulted and there is an average of 237,868 victims (age 12 or older) of rape and sexual assault each year.


  • 60% of sexual assaults are not reported to the police. 97% of rapists will never spend a day in jail.