Sexual assault is any unwanted sexual contact without consent, often through the use or threat of force or through intentionally rendering the victim incapable of consent though the use of alcohol or drugs.
Sexual assault can be perpetrated by a stranger, but it is more commonly committed by someone the victim knows, such as a friend, boyfriend/girlfriend/partner or acquaintance. Because assault usually occurs with someone the victim knows and while one or both parties are under the influence of alcohol, victims often blame themselves and do not identify it as sexual assault. Often the victim will not tell anyone about it. If they do tell someone, 80 percent of the time they will seek support from a peer before they will seek help from a professional.
90 percent of sexual assaults are committed by someone the survivor knows.
Fewer than 3 percent of all college women become victims of rape (either completed or attempted) in a given nine-month academic year. While the risk seems low, the percentage translates into 35 such crimes for every 1,000 female students. On a campus with 10,000 female students, the number could reach 350.
In more than three-quarters of college rapes, the offender, the victim or both had been drinking.
Although men are sexually assaulted far less often than women, analysis of the National Crime Victimization Survey data revealed that 1.4 per 1,000 college men report rape or sexual assault victimization each year.