Sexual assault is a crime of violence. It is estimated that more than 80 percent of all sexual assaults involve the use of weapons, or the threat of violence or death. Rapists often look for potential victims who appear weak or vulnerable; however, anyone can be a victim of a sexual assault, regardless of behavior or appearance. Rape can happen to any person, anywhere or anytime. In a significant number of cases, the rapist is known to the victim.
Rape is not just an act committed in a dark alley by an assailant the victim has never met. Most rapes occur in the victim’s home and about 60% of the victims who report their rape know their assailants. You can be aware without being afraid.
Some people believe that rapists are overcome with sexual desire or that women “ask for it” by the way they dress or act. Some people even believe that women want to be raped. These ideas assume that rape is motivated by sexual desire. IT IS NOT! Rape is a crime of violence – a hostile act – and it is motivated by the assailant’s need to hurt and humiliate the victim. It is about power. In California, any form of sexual conduct carried out upon a person, against that person’s will, is a crime. Any sexual penetration, however slight, is sufficient to complete the crime of rape. P.C. 261 & 263.