This interview with Christopher Krebs on campus sexual assault discusses the role of drugs in these assaults and risk and prevention on campus.
The interview is based on Kreb's NIJ- sponsored study that involved data collection on the prevalence and nature of various types of sexual assault on college campuses, i.e., the variety of modes and tactics perpetrators use in sexually victimizing women. The study determined that approximately 11 percent of women in the study sample were incapacitated when the sexual assault occurred, and approximately 5 percent of the women were sexually assaulted by physical force. Thirty-one women (less than 1 percent of the sample) were sexually assaulted after they were incapacitated fromr having been given a drug by the perpetrators without their knowledge or consent. Study data suggest that a significant number of sexual assaults happened at parties with perpetrators whom they know. Alcohol is typically involved at the parties. Regarding risk factors, the study found that women who had been sexually victimized before entering college were at greater risk of sexual victimization during their college years. Thus, prevention efforts should begin prior to entering college, with a focus on risk factors for and consequences of sexual assault. Also, colleges can do more to prevent sexual assault by educating both men and women early and often about the dangers of alcohol consumption as a risk factor for sexual assault. Few sexual assaults were reported to either a campus health center or the college administration, and even fewer were reported to either on-campus or off-campus law enforcement. One encouraging finding is that the large majority of victims told either a friend or a family member.
Date Published: October 1, 2008