Statistics

Statistics on Sexual Assault, Stalking
and Other Forms of Interpersonal Violence

Stalking, sexual assault, and other forms of interpersonal violence often intersect. For your convenience, we have tried to categorize data about these topics into their own sections. Click a tab to learn more about the topic.

On average, 7.5 million people are stalked in just 1 year in the United States. This only studied ages 18 and older. People between the ages of 18 and 24 experience the highest rates of stalking.

4% of American women and 2% of American men are stalked in 1 year in the United States. 27% of college women and 15% of college men are victims of stalking.

Most victims are women and most offenders are male. Male-to-male stalking is often overlooked, but worth noting. The majority of victims know their offender. Sometimes stalkers have multiple victims. Stalkers are usually a current or former intimate partner.

In many cases, stalking behaviors overlap one another. 66% of stalking behaviors included unwanted phone calls and messages. 36% involved spreading rumors. 34% included following or spying. 31% involved unwanted letters or email. 31% involved showing up at places. 29% involved waiting for the victim. 12% involved leaving unwanted presents.

2/3 of stalkers pursue their victim at least once per week. 78% of stalkers use more than one means of approach. Weapons are used to harm or threaten victims in about 20% of cases. Of that percent, intimate partners were more likely to use weapons than acquaintances or strangers.

Recidivism occurred in 60% of cases. The average time between intervention and recidivism was about 2 months, but can normally range between just 1 day to 6 years.

50-60% of partners stalking their victims say others were involved. Third-party stalking can be intention or unintentional. For example: a stalker could ask a mutual friend for the victim’s new phone number, and the unsuspecting friend might oblige.

Most stalking incidents last 6 months or less, often revolving around an academic year or college semester.

Among stalking cases, 24% involved property damage. 21% involved a direct attack on the victim. 15% involved an attack on another person or pet.

Among stalking cases that involved identity theft, 30% of stalkers charged items on their victim’s credit card. 52% of stalkers took money from their victim’s accounts. 54% of stalkers opened or closed various bank accounts of their victims.

3/4 of women who experienced stalking-related behaviors experienced other forms of victimization: 8% stalking and physical assault; 26% stalking and rape/sexual assault; 11% stalking, physical violence and rape/sexual assault combined.

Intimate partner stalkers are more likely to physically approach the victim, more insulting, interfering and threatening, more likely to use weapons, more likely to escalate the situation quickly, and are more likely to re-offend.

76% of female homicide cases involved at least one episode of stalking within the year prior to the murder. 85% of attempted female homicide cases involved at least one episode of stalking within the year prior to the attempted murder.

67% of female homicide victims had been physically abused by their intimate partner in the 12 months before the murder. 89% of female homicide victims had been physically abused and stalked in the 12 months before the murder.

9 in 10 rape victims were female in 2003. 1 in every 10 rape victims were male in 2003. We currently do not have data on gender non-conforming victims.

1 in 4 American women and 1 in 33 American men have been victims of an attempted or complete rape in their lifetime.

2.78 million American men and 17.7 American women have been victims of sexual assault or rape. 126,000 children were victims of substantiated or indicted sexual abuse in 1995.

75% of male students and 55% of female students involved in date-rape had been drinking or using drugs.

60% of completed on-campus rapes took place in the victim’s living quarters. 10.3% of complete on-campus rapes took place in fraternities.

Lifetime rate of rape or attempted rape for women by race and ethnicity:
• All women: 17.6%
• Black: 18.8%
• Asian Pacific Islander: 6.8%
• Mixed Race: 24.4%
• American Indian and Alaskan: 34.1%
• White: 17.7%

7% of girls and 3% of boys in grades 5-8 said they have been sexually abused. 12% of girls and 5% of boys in grades 9-12 said they have been sexually abused.

Victims of sexual assault are:
• 3 times more likely to suffer from depression
• 6 times more likely to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder
• 13 times more likely to abuse alcohol
• 26 times more likely to abuse drugs
• 4 times more likely to contemplate suicide

93% of juvenile sexual assault victims know their attacker.
• 34.2% were family members
• 58.7% were acquaintances
• 7.1% were strangers

The highest-risk years of being assaulted for the general population are between the ages of 12 and 34. Girls are 4 times more at risk of being assaulted between the ages of 16 and 19.

• 80% of victims are under 30
• 44% of victims are under 18
• 15% of victims are under 12

The severity of intimate partner violence is often greater in cases where the pattern of abuse was established in adolescence. Violent behavior typically begins between the ages of 12 and 18.

Nearly 1.5 million high school students nationwide experience physical abuse from a dating partner in a single year.

Girls and young women between the ages of 16 and 24 experience the highest rate of intimate partner violence — almost triple the national average.

Violent relationships in adolescence can have serious ramifications by putting the victims at higher risk for substance abuse, eating disorders, risky sexual behavior and further domestic violence.

Being physically or sexually abused makes teen girls six times more likely to become pregnant and twice as likely to get an STI.

Half of youth who have been victims of both dating violence and rape attempt suicide, compared to 12.5% of non-abused girls and 5.4% of non-abused boys.

Eight states currently do not include dating relationships in their definition of domestic violence. As a result, young victims of dating abuse often cannot apply for restraining orders.

New Hampshire is the only state where the law specifically allows a minor of any age to apply for a protection order; more than half of states do not specify the minimum age of a petitioner.

Currently only one juvenile domestic violence court in the country focuses exclusively on teen dating violence.

33% of teens who were in a violent relationship ever told anyone about the abuse.

81% percent of parents believe teen dating violence is not an issue or admit they don’t know if it’s an issue.

• Love is Respect. 2014.
• National Center for Victims of Crime. 2014.
• Stalking Acknowledgement and Reporting Among College Women Experiencing Intrusive Behaviors. 2007.
• The RECON Typology of Stalking. Mohandie. 2006
• Women’s Experience of Violence During Stalking by Former Partners. 2005.
• National Institute of Justice and Centers for Disease Control & Prevention. Prevalence, Incidence and Consequences of Violence Against Women Survey. 1998
• U.S. Department of Justice. National Crime Victimization Survey. 2003.
• U.S. Department of Justice. National Crime Victimization Survey. 2004.
• Commonwealth Fund. Survey of the Health of Adolescent Girls. 1998.
• U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Administration for Children and Families. Child Maltreatment Survey. 1995.
• U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics. Sexual Assault of Young Children as Reported to Law Enforcement. 2000.
• World Health Organization. 2002.


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