One in five women is sexually assaulted while in college. Most often, it happens her freshman or sophomore year. In the great majority of cases (75-80 percent), she knows her attacker, whether as an acquaintance, classmate, friend, or (ex) boyfriend. Many are survivors of what’s called “incapacitated assault”: they are sexually abused while drugged, drunk, passed out, or otherwise incapacitated. And although fewer and harder to gauge, college men, too, are victimized. (Source: Not Alone: The First Report of the White House Task Force to Protect Students From Sexual Assault, April 2014).
Sexual Assault and Alcohol
On average, at least 50 percent of college students’ sexual assaults are associated with alcohol use. One study reported that 74 percent of the perpetrators and 55 percent of the victims of rape had been drinking alcohol. Research suggests that alcohol consumption by the perpetrator and/or the victim increases the likelihood of acquaintance sexual assault occurring through multiple pathways.