Rape is a global problem, and the United States is no exception. Rape is a violent crime defined as the unlawful sexual activity (sexual assault) involving sexual intercourse performed without consent or forcibly or under threat of injury against a person's will.
In the United States, about 43.6% of women and 24.8% of men experienced some form of sexual violence in their lifetime, according to the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS). About 21.3% of women surveyed reported completed or attempted rape at some point in their lives, with 1.2% reporting completed or attempted rape in the 12 months preceding the survey. About 2.6% of men reported experiencing completed or attempted rape at some point in their lives. About 81.3% of female victims and 70.8% of male victims experienced their first completed or attempted rape before the age of 25.
It is important to note that rape is widely unreported, and therefore statistics on rape are not always accurate depictions of the actual number of incidents. However, the #MeToo movement has helped encourage more victims to report their rape and sexual assault incidents.
Rape statistics vary from state to state and can be influenced by factors such as demographics, culture, economics, and law enforcement capabilities. Numbers in this article from the FBI's 219 Crime in the U.S. report.
States with the Highest Rape Rates
Alaska has the highest rape rate in the United States of 148.7 rapes per 100,000 inhabitants, down from 161.6 in 2018. Alaska tends to have higher crime rates than other states, in large part due to the lack of law enforcement, especially in rural, isolated communities. The state, in particular, is dangerous for women, with 59% of Alaskan women experiencing intimate partner violence, sexual violence, or both.
Arkansas's rape rate is 77.2 rapes per 100,000 inhabitants, making it the second-highest in the country. Like other states, the number of rape cases reported at state universities has increased significantly. 2019's rape rate is over four points higher than it was in 2018.
3. South Dakota
South Dakota has the third-highest rap rate in the U.S., with 72.6 rapes per 100,000, up from 68 in 2018.
Michigan has the fourth-highest rape rate of 72.4 rapes per 100,000 inhabitants. This is about 4.5 points lower than it was in 2018. Rape is especially prevalent in Detroit, where a crime report from 2018 showed reductions in every type of crime in the city, except for rape. In 2018, the number of reported rapes in Detroit was 894, a 28% increase from 697 in 2017. The University of Michigan saw a 150% increase in reported rapes between 2017 and 2018, from 18 to 45. Officials believe that the #MeToo campaign is partially responsible for the increases.
With a rape rate of 70.2 per 100,000, Nevada has the fifth-highest rape rate. This is over 6 points lower than it was in 2018. Las Vegas Police and the Rape Crisis Center of Southern Nevada have seen a steady increase in the number of rape cases reported since the #MeToo movement. The Nevada Uniform Crime Report shows that the most probable demographics for offenders in Nevada are males between the ages of 30-34.