While society may not talk about sexual violence and abuse as much as say, car accidents and other personal injury cases, it doesn't mean it isn't a big problem in the United States. In fact, if you read the statistics on sexual violence, you'd be surprised at its prevalence.
According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center, rape costs the United States $127 billion each year, which is more than assault ($93 billion), murder ($71 billion), and even drunk driving ($61 billion). Here are some more eye-opening facts about sexual violence in America:
- 81% of female sexual violence victims reported significant long and short-term effects, including Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
- 1 in 4 girls in the U.S. will be sexually abused before her 18th birthday.
- 96% of the offenders who sexually abuse children are male, and nearly 77% of child sexual abusers are 18 or older.
- 1 in 5 women are sexually assaulted while they are enrolled in college.
- Over 90% of the victims of sexual assault on college campuses never report it.
- 63% of the sexual assaults are never reported to law enforcement.
- Of all crimes, rape is the most underreported.
(Source: National Sexual Violence Resource Center 2012, 2013, 2015)
Can I File a Sexual Abuse Lawsuit?
Often, when victims are sexually assaulted on a college campus, at work, or in a public place, such as at a concert or at a motel, they fail to take legal action because they don't think there's anything that they can do, but this is not necessarily true.
Sexual assault is highly frowned upon in our society, especially when it's against a minor, involves sexual battery, or committed by someone, such as a boss, co-worker, or person of trust, such as a teacher or a religious leader. Because sexually-motivated crimes are deplorable, juries are eager to punish the offender and award a generous settlement to the victim.
But, what if the offender does not have any money? Since many sex offenders are not wealthy, often a sexual abuse lawsuit can be filed against another party, such as a nightclub owner where a rape occurred, against a school for hiring an employee who has inappropriate relations with students, against an employer, or against a motel where a rape occurred – you get the picture.
Sexually-motivated crimes are not taken lightly in our court system. If you were sexually abused, you may have grounds to file a lawsuit where you can receive the compensation you deserve.
To learn more, please contact our Columbia personal injury firm for a personal case evaluation.