Sexual Assault


 Sexual Assault

The National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC), identifies Sexual Violence as being when someone forces or manipulates someone else into unwanted sexual activity without their consent. Reasons someone might not consent include fear, age, illness, disability, and/or influence of alcohol or other drugs. Anyone can experience sexual violence including: children, teens, adults, and elders. Those who sexually abuse can be acquaintances, family members, trusted individuals or strangers.

Click here for a fact sheet describing the dynamics of sexual violence.

Sexual assault is a violent crime that involves power, aggression and control. Sexual assault can happen anywhere, anytime of day, to anyone regardless of age, class, ethnicity, socio-economic status, sexuality or gender. Sexual violence encompasses a number of different behaviors, all of which are illegal and none of which are the victim’s fault.

Types of sexual violence include, but are not necessarily limited to:

  • Rape – a forced sexual act that includes oral, anal or vaginal penetration
  • Acquaintance Rape
  • Child Sexual Abuse
  • Dating Violence
  • Drug Facilitated Sexual Violence
  • Stranger Rape
  • Stalking
  • Sexual Harassment
  • Sexual Exploitation by helping professionals
  • Partner Rape
  • Incest

Click here for a link to more in-depth descriptions of the different types of sexual violence.

Support Services

A number of support services are available for survivors of sexual violence, including but not limited to:

  • 24-hour hotline intervention and hospital response
  • Ongoing support to survivors and their loved ones
  • Immediate and on-going support services
  • Referrals to appropriate resources regarding long-term service needs
  • Advocacy throughout the healing process chosen by the survivor, be that participation with the criminal justice process or not
  • Short-term individual counseling services
  • Group counseling services

Additionally, many sexual violence direct service providers also offer community education and primary prevention education surrounding the prevention of first-time perpetration and victimization.

Click here for a listing of local sexual violence direct service providers in your area.

Scope of Sexual Assault

  • 5,152 primary victims of sexual assault received services from the 15 direct service sexual assault centers across the state in 2015: 4,054 Female and 932 Male. 2,503 secondary victims of sexual assault were served by these programs (including individuals other than the primary victims directly affected by the crime such as: significant others, children, friends, etc.). 3,398 emergency hotline calls were answered by these programs in 2015.
  • In 2015, according to the 15 Direct Service Rape Crisis Centers across SC, of the perpetrators that could be identified;
    • 249 were female
    • 3228 were male
    • the gender of 489 was unknown.
  • Of these, 1,016 were friends or acquaintances, 889 were a parent or stepparent, and over 640 were some other relative.
  • In 2015, across SC, there were 637 cases that involved both domestic violence and sexual assault.
    • Furthermore, 753 sexual assaults were known cases involving substance abuse. These cases can include alcohol, narcotics, and other drugs. These cases are otherwise known as alcohol-drug facilitated sexual assaults.


It is estimated that 1 of every 6 women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime, according to the Rape Abuse Incest National Network (RAINN). This number is about 1 in 33 for American men. Approximately 15% of sexual assault and rape victims are under age 12.

According to RAINN, 73% of sexual assaults were perpetrated by a non-stranger, and more than 50% of all rape/sexual assault incidents were reported by victims to have occurred within 1 mile of their home or at their home. The average age of a rapist is 31 years old, and 52% are white. 22% of imprisoned rapists report that they are married.

More information regarding sexual assault can be found here: Sexual Assault

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