Talk:Sexual assault

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Forced Kissing in the Lede[edit]

The lede mentions forced kissing in the definition of sexual assault, but neither of the cited sources mentions kissing in its definition. The view that sexual assault includes kissing is absolutely one for which an argument can be made, but precisely because this part of the definition is contentious within the public discourse, the article cannot include it without a citation. I'll remove it; feel free to revert if you can find a reliable source to support its inclusion. Asasa64 (talk) 04:27, 5 October 2012 (UTC)

I agree with you! If it is not in the source, it should not be included. Lova Falk talk 10:47, 6 October 2012 (UTC)

definition of sexual assault[edit]

"illegal sexual contact that usually involves force upon a person without consent or is inflicted upon a person who is incapable of giving consent (as because of age or physical or mental incapacity) or who places the assailant (as a doctor) in a position of trust or authority "

Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary

"Specific laws vary by state, but sexual assault generally refers to any crime in which the offender subjects the victim to sexual touching that is unwanted and offensive. These crimes can range from sexual groping or assault/battery, to attempted rape."

Findlaw --Survivor 03:12, 21 December 2005 (UTC)

Small problem: wikipedia cannot say "you should" do this or "you should" do that. Any recommendation needs to be attached to a party making them.

Bigger meta-problem: The legal distinction, or social distinction, between "sexual assault" and "rape" is blurry. For example, the definition of "sexual assault" at [1] would include touching the victims buttocks through clothing without prior obvious and clear consent. Meanwhile, according to [2], all sexual assault is rape. If someone wants to take on a useful project, working on a clear distinction within wikipedia between sexual assault and rape would be worthwhile. Otherwise, as it stands, this article and rape should just about be merged together. -BuddhaInside

Just because some sources claim that all sexual assault is rape doesn't make it so. Legally, rape is distinguised from sexual assault in many (most?) juristictions. Nor are the terms identical in common usage.
Generally I find this article somewhat POV. I will give it some attention when I find the time. -- Daran 16:41, 18 Sep 2003 (UTC)

Buddha - "Some suggest that victims should be referred to additional resources and made aware of their rights under policy and law."

That's an incredibly silly way to phrase that. Evercat 17:58, 18 Sep 2003 (UTC)

Yes, there should be a better way. -BuddhaInside

Can I suggest a compromise between the two of you? Why not have a section on Best Practice. Evercat should cite an medical or other authoritative source, and Buddha should refrain from contradicting it unless s/he can find an comparible authority. -- Daran 04:33, 19 Sep 2003 (UTC)

Daran, compromise on the content of the article, yes. Compromise on what is "true", no. You say I should refrain from contradicting evercat unless I can cite an authority. Why did you not say s/he should refrain from contradicting me unless s/he can cite an authority?
Try swapping the names in that sentence. Perhaps then it will become a little more clear to you, since it is essentially the same either way. Ducker
Congratulations. I see that you grasped my point. -BuddhaInside
I did say s/he should cite an authority. In case it's not clear, I have found both your approaches so far to this issue unsatisfactory.
It's not the job of an encyclopaedia to give every POV no matter how idiosyncratic. POVs should be reported if they are significant, either because they're widespread (many people think that...) or because they're authoritative or influential in some way (Dr. Sixpack, of the National Federation of Rape Crisis Centres says...) Evercat should cite an authoritative source for his/r claims. You should cite one if you wish to include a contrary POV. -- Daran
"Emergency Contraception" illegal in Chile [3], illegal in Poland [4], australia, italy, ireland, portugal, malta, etc, etc. Wikipedia can not state that doctors "should make victims aware of emergency contraception" when emergency contraception is something that is specifically illegal in several jurisdictions worldwide. Cutting to the heart of the ethical dilema, wikpedia itself, as an encyclopedia, cannot take a stance on this. There are (some) legal and moral authorities which hold that all abortion is wrong, even in the case of Rape. Wikipedia does not reflect purely American norms, and cannot override these legal and moral authorities. It can only cite and point towards alternative legal and moral authorities. -BuddhaInside

Fine. You're quite right. But "Involuntary administration of emergency contraception may be considered in societies where such administration is both socially acceptable and legal." - where does this happen? Evercat 13:18, 20 Sep 2003 (UTC)

That is a very good question. If you read the article history you will see that I did not add that text. -BuddhaInside

Ah. OK, sorry. Evercat 14:30, 20 Sep 2003 (UTC)

As I wrote above, I did not write the original comment. But I just finished doing a little googling and found that, astoundingly to me, China (~20% of the worlds population) appears to be a nation where involuntary administration of abortificants is considered a social good. Whether that is directly related to the topic of "Sexual assault", I do not know. -BuddhaInside

(Comment crossposted from Talk:rape due to relevance) I have broken out the handling of rape as a medical emergency into the new topic sexual assault and linked it appropriately. This is the term used in first aid and EMT instruction for this sensitive topic. Please remember that some of the readers of this entry will be reading it because they need information on the subject for urgent personal reasons. I cannot think of a topic where NPOV is more critical not only to the credibility of Wikipedia, but to the common humanity of our readers. clarka

I am considerably impressed by the way in which this article has morphed while I wasn't looking. I should add that I like the current NPOV, because it differs from my personal and American-centric views but is much stronger than my original version. 7 April 2004 clarka

I would like to know where in South America the author claims of emergency contraception is not socially acceptable -- I've been in a lot of countries there and never saw one that fits in what the author describes. Please change...

First Aid[edit]

Whoever wrote the first aid section needs to substantiate this advice. Anybody can write a paragrah saying "do this" or "do that", but this is an encyclopedia, and the readers are looking for verifiable information from professionals. If not fixed soon, will be considered for deletion.--Esprit15d 16:30, 19 December 2005 (UTC)

I am a first aid instructor. The copyrighted nature of national curricula prohibits me from citing American Red Cross, Medic First Aid, etc. guidelines. If you insist on being tiresome, I shall cite as many of the first aid books on my shelf as are necessary to make you go away. There is little a first aid provider should do differently for a victim of sexual assault aside from being sensitive and understanding. clarka 12.27.05

Complete re-write[edit]

This article needs a complete re-write. Some "sub-headings" are not even full paragrahs. There are sections that are not in complete sentences. And it starts off with this disclaimer: "The etiologies and proximate causes of sexual assault are beyond the scope of this article." What does that mean? And why discredit the article right from the beginning? That tells the reader 'Why bother reading it?'

It doesn't have a world view, and gives un-substantiated advice advice as if it is a field guide. For example "Call for help or assist the victim in self-transport to the nearest hospital emergency room" What if the reader is in school doing a report on sexual assault. It should written from a universal style. There also isn't a reference in sight.

Additionally, sexual assault is far to broad a term to only include information regarding medical emegencies. Such a topic would be an appropriate sub heading, or a separate article that can be linked to from here.

There is salvageable information here, but in its current form, it needs a lot of work.--Esprit15d 16:53, 19 December 2005 (UTC)

As requested I have just done a complete re-write of this article to bring it back to its original purpose and focus, as documented in talk comments above. I have added a number of additional citations and references, supplementing the ones already present in the article. You will find that all advice given is well within the standards followed by Western health and policing agencies. (Anyone with non-Western perspectives is strongly encouraged to contribute them.)
I have also carefully signposted the article in its header, and explained fully in more detail here, so that those who disagree can argue the point on the Talk page instead of engaging in partial additions and psuedo-corrections.
Sexual assault is the accepted term in both the medical and law enforcement communities for how to train people (ranging from laypersons to professionals) in how to help rape victims. When an EMT or police officer goes to training to help rape victims, it is titled "sexual assault training."
I respectfully request that you read the article Rape before proceeding further. Sexual assault as an article is not INTENDED to be an article about the difference between forced sex and rape. If you really want to write about that, why don't you create an article titled "forced sex." But, if you please, not at the expense of removing basic information about how to react to sexual assault from a world encyclopedia.

clarka 12.27.05

Article all wrong[edit]

This isn't a help and support centre and that is just what the article is. Skinnyweed 17:53, 20 May 2006 (UTC)

Legal Definitions[edit]

I was looking for the legal definitions of what is sexual assault. I understand that these vary by country and by state (in the USA) and/or province. But surely there could be an article somewhere that discusses this with links to the laws in various places? Any suggestions what that article should be/is called?

I like the concept of this article(though I agree it could use some work) and I am glad that it is the first page that a user looks for (though I hope anyone who is raped/assaulted has better resources than wikipedia (much as I love wikipedia). However the legal definitions are much more factual.

Mystic eye 16:02, 25 August 2006 (UTC) I just wanted to let you know that according to RAINN, the Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network...Rape and sexual assault are defined seperetly, however the legal jargon for sexual assault can vary a lot throughout the US and they may be very factual but they may be hard to understand for someone who has no legal background. I would recommend this website to anyone wondering about the legal asspects of sexual assault and also anyone wondering about the stats that go along with it. Just an idea.Summerhopper 05:58, 8 March 2007 (UTC)SLH

In the most general terms, sexual assault is any unwanted sexual contact and rape is specifically intercourse. Of course it varies wildly from state to state. — NRen2k5(TALK), 11:05, 6 May 2008 (UTC)


This article describes how to prevent sexual assault. It should describe what sexual assault is and how it is committed.

I'll add to that and mention that the prevention section isn't even all that accurate to begin with. Statalyzer (talk) 18:41, 8 April 2008 (UTC)

POV tag[edit]

I'm doing tag cleanup, and often remove tags that aren't adequately commented or that are old. In this case I have to agree with many here - the first paragraph could be expanded a bit, and the rest of the article has no place here, IMO. No tag removal here....Jjdon (talk) 19:51, 29 April 2008 (UTC)

I suppose the article could use some work. The section about reducing the incidence of rape is horrible and should probably be done away with entirely. I'd like to take this opportunity to informally request that we do exactly that. In the meantime, I've hit it with some tags to raise attention and encourage discussion on the topic. — NRen2k5(TALK), 08:49, 2 May 2008 (UTC)

A complete re write of this article[edit]

After seeing the quality of the article on rape I decided to make some edits and re writes (e.g.Rape trauma syndrome). I've been making steady progress on the subject however today I hit a brick wall. The problem is that the article on rape deals specifically with sexual intercourse without consent. However the effects for a rape victim are the same for a victim of other forms of sexual abuse. The motives of a rapist are the same as the motives of sexual abusers. When creating articles except for subtle differences rape and other forms of sexual abuse are the same.(this is a very sensitive subject so let me just say I'm not implying rape and sexual assault are the same for the victim)

I think the information in the rape article should be merged the sexual assault article to creating a new article "sexual violence".

Then I looked at this article.

By wikipedias, or by any standard this article is at best useless and at worst misleading. It seems to have been be written by every crank putting in there own two cents. It's packed with unreferenced contributions from ultra feminists and idiots. I don't know how this article has remained in this state for so long.

This article bests itself with

"The most effective 'tip' for how to prevent sexual assault is to not perpetrate sexual assault. If no one perpetrated this crime, it would be eliminated"

I would love to meet the person who wrote this.

They should be banned from wikipedia on general principles.

If you look at other articles relating to this subject (e.g.Rape, Sociobiological theories of rape, Child sexual abuse) their standards are not much better.

I think this article and the rape article should not be part of the common law series. For it to meet wikipedias standards these articles have to deal with a vast array of issues and fields. I think there should be a article on sexual assault and rape in the common law series but I think wikipedias article on sexual assault and rape should be far more comprehensive.

There is a lot of ignorance around the subject of sexual assault. On wikipedia and in general. This is why I think its vital that this article be improved.

There should also be a "sexual violence" portal to help coordinate the effort.

However there isn't one and I'm not able or qualified to start one.

So here's my plan. The article should be renamed "sexual violence" so it can act the way the Ireland article links the Irish history article and the Irish people article.

This subject needs a comprehensive structure. The article Sexual assault should be the primary article around which every other article in this subject pivots. Each article has to have the obvious i.e NPV, NOR............ Not being idiotic. I think the Sexual assault article should look something like this

   * 1 Definition of sexual assault
         o 1.1 Forms and contexts of sexual violence
   * 2 The extent of the problem
         o 2.1 Sources of data
         o 2.2 Estimates of sexual violence
               + 2.2.1 Sexual violence by intimate partners
               + 2.2.2 Forced sexual initiation
               + 2.2.3 Gang rape
               + 2.2.4 Sexual trafficking
               + 2.2.5 Sexual violence against sex workers
         o 2.3 Sexual violence against men and boys
               + 2.3.1 The extent of the problem
               + 2.3.2 Consequences of sexual violence
               + 2.3.3 Prevention and policy responses
         o 2.4 Sexual violence in schools, health care settings, armed conflicts and refugee settings
               + 2.4.1 Schools
               + 2.4.2 Health care settings
               + 2.4.3 Armed conflicts and refugee settings
         o 2.5 Customary forms of sexual violence
               + 2.5.1 Child marriage
               + 2.5.2 Other customs leading to violence
   * 3 What are the risk factors for sexual violence?
         o 3.1 Factors increasing women's vulnerability
         o 3.2 Age
         o 3.3 Alcohol and drug consumption
         o 3.4 Having previously been raped or sexually abused
         o 3.5 Having many sexual partners
         o 3.6 Educational level
         o 3.7 Poverty
   * 4 Factors increasing men's risk of committing rape
         o 4.1 Alcohol and drug consumption
         o 4.2 Psychological factors
         o 4.3 Peer and family factors
               + 4.3.1 Gang rape
               + 4.3.2 Early childhood environments
               + 4.3.3 Family honour and sexual purity
         o 4.4 Community factors
               + 4.4.1 Poverty
               + 4.4.2 Physical and social environment
         o 4.5 Societal factors
               + 4.5.1 Laws and policies
               + 4.5.2 Social norms
               + 4.5.3 Global trends and economic factors
   * 5 The consequences of sexual violence
         o 5.1 Pregnancy and gynaecological complications
         o 5.2 Sexually transmitted diseases
         o 5.3 Mental health
         o 5.4 Suicidal behaviour
         o 5.5 Social ostracization
   * 6 What can be done to prevent sexual violence?
         o 6.1 Individual approaches
               + 6.1.1 Psychological care and support
               + 6.1.2 Programmes for perpetrators
               + 6.1.3 Developmental approaches
         o 6.2 Health care responses
               + 6.2.1 Medico-legal services
               + 6.2.2 Training for health care professionals
               + 6.2.3 Prophylaxis for HIV infection
               + 6.2.4 Centres providing comprehensive care to victims of sexual assault
         o 6.3 Community-based efforts
               + 6.3.1 Prevention campaigns
               + 6.3.2 Community activism by men
               + 6.3.3 School-based programmes
         o 6.4 Legal and policy responses
               + 6.4.1 Legal reform
               + 6.4.2 International treaties
         o 6.5 Actions to prevent other forms of sexual violence
               + 6.5.1 Sexual trafficking
               + 6.5.2 Female genital mutilation
               + 6.5.3 Child marriage
               + 6.5.4 Rape during armed conflicts
   * 7 Sexual violence and HIV/AIDS
   * 8 See also
   * 9 References
   * 10 Further reading
   * 11 External links
         o 11.1 National organizations
         o 11.2 Support organizations
         o 11.3 Research and information

This is a theoretical contents box. Writing the actual article in this form would make it far too long.

However every article linked to this one needs to be of the highest quality or else this article won't work.

Over the next few days section by section I'll start creating or rewriting articles that fall under the titles above. I'm going to incorporate all relevant information that currently exists into these articles and will add more relevant referenced material.

I'd appreciate any help or suggestions.

P.S. I posted the same message on the rape articles talk page

Jmckeon ie (talk) 21:41, 23 May 2008 (UTC)

I disagree. Please review my alternate suggestion on the rape talk page under sexual assault v. rape. Both the rape page and the sexual assault page lack the clear definitions of how these terms are distinguished from one another. In some jurisdictions, the crime of rape and the crime of sexual assault coexist as separate offenses. The problem is that most people see no difference by equating sexual assault as a synonym for rape. Rape has a history as an offense that goes back hundreds of years, whereas sexual assault is a legal invention of the reform movement. I would suggest a clarification of the differences on the two pages and movement of some of the material on the rape page to this page. I would point out that the psychological motives for check fraud, robbery, theft, shoplifting, income tax evasion, embezzlement etc. are the same, but they should not be merged into kleptomania. I agree with your opinion of some of the unsourced material on these pages as inaccurate. Great changes are needed for this article, but less comprehensive changes for the rape article are in order. Please be aware that these articles are within the scope and interest of multiple wikiprojects.
There are a few inaccuracies on the rape page concerning US law. For instance, the federal sentencing guidelines table is incorrect according to the US sentencing commission. Criminal Sexual Abuse of a person under the age of 16 is a level 18 offense punishable by 27-33 years months for first time offenders. The death penalty has not been authorized for rape since Coker v. Georgia. Given the limited scope of federal law, it is not very helpful in illustrating how the law works in the United States. The Model Penal Code is a bit better, but its age does not reflect many of the major reforms. The death penalty for criminal sexual abuse of a person under the age of 16 is only authorized when the act results in a homicide. In that sense, murder rape is punishable by the death penalty in all states that punish murder with the death penalty. Legis Nuntius (talk) 08:15, 24 May 2008 (UTC)
I have a better understanding of where you are going with this. I added a rough template to group the various related topics together. After it is finalized, it can be proposed as a new wikipedia infobox template. I am still concerned that the topic is too generalized for the sexual assault article. There is a very specific legal definition for sexual assault. It would be difficult to expand the article with material related to the legal debate over the elements of sexual assault such as consent, implied consent, silence as a lack of consent, duress and consent, consent as a defense or an element, contact vs. intercourse etc. The legal scholarship on this specific offense is voluminous and distinct from rape, which include issues of force and coercion: extrinsic v.s intrinsic force, threat of force under objective or subjective reasoning, force as an aggravating factor or element, resistance etc. I would propose that sexual assault remain separate from a main article such as "sexual violence" (which may be what you are getting at). In the template, I put "sexual violence and victimization," because violence and coercion do not always exist in victimization (e.g. sleeping or intoxicated/drugged victim, invasions of privacy and autonomy). Violence implies the crime of rape, which has traditionally included force, whereas most sexual assault statutes do not require a display of force. Additionally, force is perpetrator centered rather than victim centered. Legis Nuntius (talk) 21:02, 25 May 2008 (UTC)

There has to be a clear context in which you give legal definitions of rape and sexual assault. As you've said this article is under the scope of multiple wikiprojects. The proposal and changes I made are to make an article with a comprehensive global perspective of the crime and it's effects. I think your template is a perfect start. I also concede that the sexual assault may not be the proper title to this article. I've suggested that Sexual violence should be the title of this article.Sexual violence and victimization would be a better title.
Under the structure I proposed above I think the rape and sexual assault articles would deal with the criminal definition and response only. They would fit in like this
   * 6 What can be done to prevent sexual violence?
         o 6.1 Individual approaches
         o 6.2 Health care responses
         o 6.3 Community-based efforts
         o 6.4 Legal and policy responses
               + 6.4.1 Legal responses to sexual abuse 
                 main|Sexual assault, main|rape..........
               + 6.4.2 Legal reform
               + 6.4.3 International treaties
         o 6.5 Actions to prevent other forms of sexual violence
I didn't move the sexual assault article into a new article because it was a criminal law article mashed together with random comments from other wikiprojects. I didn't create a new article "sexual violence" because I would have been duplicating this article and the rape article. Instead I'm taking liberties in the interpretation of sexual assault (some states classify all sexual violence as sexual assault). I thought that when the information is put in place the article could be renamed and restructured in a more clear and concise way.
An article with the structure I describe above will allow independent legal articles to deal with the criminal definition and response to sex crimes in different jurisdictions. All non-legal information about rape and sexual assault will be redirected back to this article I mentioned above e.g What are the risk factors for sexual violenceCite error: A <ref> tag is missing the closing </ref> (see the help page).

to help explain its source. This table shows the categorizations and the maximum sentence for rape under US federal law.

The US can execute somebody for child rape. This is a section of the US code it states:
With Children. - Whoever crosses a State line with intent to engage in a sexual act with a person who has not attained the age of 12 years, or in the special maritime and territorial jurisdiction of the United States or in a Federal prison, knowingly engages in a sexual act with another person who has not attained the age of 12 years, or knowingly engages in a sexual act under the circumstances described in subsections (a) and (b) with another person who has attained the age of 12 years but has not attained the age of 16 years (and is at least 4 years younger than the person so engaging), or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title, imprisoned for any term of years or life, or both. If the defendant has previously been convicted of another Federal offense under this subsection, or of a State offense that would have been an offense under either such provision had the offense occurred in a Federal prison, unless the death penalty is imposed, the defendant shall be sentenced to life in prison.[1]
I agree with you that the whole area of rape law and sexual abuse law needs attention on wikipedia. I'm currently concentrating on the this article. When its up to a reasonable standard I'm going to start expanding and clarifying the articles in its subsections. Including the criminal response to sexual abuse.

Jmckeon ie (talk) 05:54, 26 May 2008 (UTC)

I think that's a good idea. The terms sexual assault and rape can be synonyms in a non-legal sense. The sentence under the aggravated sexual abuse statute is life imprisonment unless the death penalty is imposed under the Federal Death Penalty Act of 1994. Under the FDPA, the death penalty is authorized under that statute when:

the defendant, as determined beyond a reasonable doubt at the hearing under section 3593(A) intentionally killed the victim; (B) intentionally inflicted serious bodily injury that resulted in the death of the victim; (C) intentionally participated in an act, contemplating that the life of a person would be taken or intending that lethal force would be used in connection with a person, other than one of the participants in the offense, and the victim died as a direct result of the act; or (D) intentionally and specifically engaged in an act of violence, knowing that the act created a grave risk of death to a person, other than one of the participants in the offense, such that participation in the act constituted a reckless disregard for human life and the victim died as a direct result of the act, shall be sentenced to death if, after consideration of the factors set forth in section 3592 in the course of a hearing held pursuant to section 3593, it is determined that imposition of a sentence of death is justified, except that no person may be sentenced to death who was less than 18 years of age at the time of the offense. 18USC3591

Under state law, the defendant would be charged with murder, but a murder charge does not give federal jurisdiction. So yes, the death penalty is authorized by the federal government under that statute, but only when the act results in the death of the victim. The State of Louisiana did not allege in its brief (Kennedy v. Louisiana) that the federal government authorized the death penalty for aggravated sexual assault of a child under the age of 12, when the act does not result in death as Louisiana does. Those are the best non-biased sources that I can find on the internet that are free. There are other sources on Lexis and, but those are paid legal services. Legis Nuntius (talk) 16:25, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
If you have any suggestions for the articles on the template or the names of the headings, either to remove, change or add, feel free to make the changes or list them here. I tried to track down all of the related articles but I may have overlooked some that should be included or I may have been over inclusive. Given the quality of some of the articles already on the template, it makes a colossal to-do list. Legis Nuntius (talk) 16:37, 26 May 2008 (UTC)
You are right. The death penalty is not applied. I read the code wrong. I've changed the table on the rape page so that it's more accurate. I've started adding the template to the different pages I'm editing. The rape article is terrible. However it gets roughly 5,000 hits a day [5]. I'm going to try and get [rape] redirected to Sexual violence. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Jmckeon ie (talkcontribs) 21:06, 28 May 2008 (UTC)

Why is this categorized as Violence against women but not Violence against men? Whether you like it or not, men CAN be, and sometimes are, sexually assaulted. NorthernThunder (talk) 12:35, 26 November 2009 (UTC)

More detail on Sexual Assault[edit]

This article is essentially a stub, it doesn't have nearly enough detail on what constitutes sexual assault, and is essentially just a shortened version of the articles on rape and child sexual abuse. Eraserhead1 (talk) 12:27, 25 December 2009 (UTC)

Requirements of a sex offender[edit]

The first title of AWA, the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act, provides states with minimum registration and community notification procedures in their management of registered sex offenders. For some registered sexual offenders, the AWA mandates will result in increased or changed registration duties. Some of the requirements under AWA include but are not limited to the following:

1. Classifying registered sex offenders via a 3-level tier system based on the crime committed versus their risk for reoffense (registered sex offenders who committed lower level offenses would be classified as tier 1; those who committed moderate-level offenses as tier 2; and those who committed higher level offenses as tier 3);

2. Making kidnapping and false imprisonment of a child, regardless of sexual intent, a registerable sexual offense;

3. Requiring registered sex offenders to register in any jurisdiction, not only where they live, but also where they work or attend school;

4. Requiring sex offenders to verify their addresses once per year for those at tier 1, twice a year for those at tier 2, and 4 times per year for those at tier 3;

5. Making failure to register a felony offense punishable by a maximum of 10 years in prison;

6. Giving a registered sex offender 3 days to report a change of address to law enforcement agencies;

7. Requiring that registered sex offenders' entire criminal history, not just the sexual offense, finger prints, palm prints, and a DNA sample be reported to law enforcement agencies;

8. Mandating that the registry be made available on the Internet and that all tier levels, including tier 1, be subject to such community notification;

9. Mandating the length of time a registered sexual offender would be required to register; offenders at tier 1 would register for 15 years, offenders at tier 2 for 25 years, and offenders at tier 3 for life; and

10. Providing additional funds to support offices, software, training, and additional personnel to enforce registered sex offender laws



This particular paragraph needs some cleaing up: "The incidence of sexual assault in the United States is alarming. Every year, an estimated 300,000 women are raped1,2 and 3.7 million are confronted with unwanted sexual activity.3 In addition, of the approximately 900,000 children who are maltreated each year, 9% are sexually abused.4" It has extraneous numbers probably left over from a user's attempt to cite. -Sardaukar Blackfang (talk) 04:05, 8 April 2010 (UTC)

Groin Attack as a form of sexual assault?[edit]

Does a Groin Attack count as a form of sexual assault? (talk) 17:31, 26 June 2010 (UTC)

Unnecessary and unhelpful image--REMOVE PLEASE[edit]

A) There is no need for an illustration of sexual assault.
B) It is a stylized painting that does not necessarily represent the reality of rape or other sexual assault.
C) Some may find it titillating--bare breasts and all that.
D) Survivors of sexual assault, who may constitute a large percentage of people who look at this entry, may find it damaging or difficult to look at.
E) In general, for anyone who has been sexually assaulted (or who would rather not be), it's pretty offensive to have a lovely painting of rape as part of the wiki entry. It would also be offensive to have a sick, horrifying image of rape. In fact, just thinking there should be an image of "sexual assault" with an encyclopedia entry is kind of bizarre. And don't argue that it's similar to murder, because it's not. It has a whole additional psychological element, and it is why it is relatively standard in the media to show an image of a murder victim (even their corpse) but not to show an image of a rape victim (or an image of someone being raped). —Preceding unsigned comment added by Susan.dicey.k (talkcontribs) 21:51, 30 July 2010 (UTC)

Four years later, this issue is coming up again. I very much agree with the original comment (although I think point C above is not relevant). I don't think the picture adds any information or other value to the article, it's just likely to be a trigger for victims. I don't see any good reason to include it and a very good reason to remove it. —a thing 08:53, 17 June 2014 (UTC)
User:Flyer22, regarding WP:NOTCENSORED, censorship is not the issue. The issue is not whether or not the image offends people, it's whether the image hurts people. It's about being sensitive to the concerns of victims. I'm sure many victims come to this article for help. Exposing someone in that situation to an unnecessarily triggering image is an awful thing to do. The introduction to Wikipedia:Offensive material says: "Material that would be considered vulgar or obscene by typical Wikipedia readers[nb 1] should be used if and only if its omission would cause the article to be less informative, relevant, or accurate, and no equally suitable alternative is available." How is the image informative? It's not very relevant or accurate either, considering it is a painting from 1877 depicting many images that would not be present in sexual assault today. Any equally suitable alternative image would have to not depict sexual assault. There may be some sort of informational picture that could add to the article, but depicting the topic of this particular article graphically is unhelpful. —a thing 09:12, 17 June 2014 (UTC)
The WP:NOTCENSORED policy applies to whether someone objects to an image on whatever personal ground; that's why it links to Wikipedia:Offensive material at the top of its section. You don't have to inform me of Wikipedia:Offensive material; as my user page shows, I'm well aware of that guideline. Here is where you first made the argument to remove the image. I objected to your argument for removing the image; you argued that it should be removed because it's "a potentially triggering image [...] particularly when many are likely coming here for help." And, in Wikipedia terms, that is a poor reason for removal. That is why I reverted you here and here. In that first revert, you can see that I cited the Self-harm article for editors having made similar arguments for removing the cutting image from that article; see here for an example. The IP argued, "I have taken out the picture of the injured arm because this image could be triggering to self-harmers who view this page." I reverted, stating, "The self-harm image helps people understand this mindset, is presented in an encyclopedic manner." That person showed up again as a different IP, and was reverted again. Then Fraggle81 made a hidden note about the image, which I tweaked.
Your argument for removing the sexual assault image is essentially the same as the IP's argument for removing the self-harm image. You differ in that you have brought up the Wikipedia:Offensive material guideline; that guideline is the only valid rationale I see of yours in the case of Wikipedia rationale for removing the image. And so I agree to remove the image only on that argument. However, sexual assault is also a historical matter, and we include such an image as the lead image of the Rape article as well (the WP:Permalink is here). So neither of these images are inaccurate as far as depicting rape from a historical point of view is concerned, or simply from the point of view of rape/gang rape combined with murder. And you have not proposed a particular image that can be the "equally suitable alternative" image available for displaying the topic of sexual assault. And, no, an "equally suitable alternative" image would not necessarily be an image of no sexual assault. I suggest you wait and see if others have anything to state on this topic. If this topic included a lead image that I think is vital, I would inform WP:MED of this discussion. Flyer22 (talk) 10:15, 17 June 2014 (UTC)

It is not satisfactory for an editor to announce at an establised article that a certain image must be removed for some reason (except for copyright issues, in which case the image is speedily removed). There cannot be any progress because all we essentially have is that two editors disagree. Many problems can be resolved by consulting policies or style guidelines, but this is not one of those occasions. Some of the arguments in the OP are sound ("offensive to have a lovely painting of rape"), but they can be countered, so there is a stalemate and the existing article should be retained. A slow-motion edit war is doubly unsatisfactory as articles are not written by whoever is the most persistent. If anyone wants a change, they need to draft a neutral WP:RFC, and put their arguments as a response to the RFC. Johnuniq (talk) 10:39, 17 June 2014 (UTC)

I have agreed to remove the image, but only on the WP:Offensive material argument; in other words, I don't see the image as vital to convey the topic of sexual assault; then again, it is likely helpful to a lot of people to better understand the topic, to have some type of imagery of what sexual assault can entail (minus the dated look of the imagery). So perhaps removing the image does not completely adhere to WP:Offensive material, certainly not if "its omission would cause the article to be less informative," and especially considering that no particular "equally suitable alternative" has been suggested in its place. Flyer22 (talk) 11:00, 17 June 2014 (UTC)
On a side note: I don't see what is lovely about the depiction of rape and other sexual assault in the image; so, unless simply referring to the work being an artistic display, I can't truly consider the image "a lovely painting of rape." Flyer22 (talk) 11:08, 17 June 2014 (UTC)
I'm rather ambivalent. However, I interpret the "lovely painting" as saying that the image is attractive, and would be highly valued on the wall of just about any art gallery. The fact that it depicts a brutal assault is only seen on examining the image and using one's mind to fill in gaps. I guess the claim is that something attractive should not be used to illustrate an unattractive assault. A more cogent point is that the image does not portray the typical modern experience of the topic of this article. Something to bear in mind is what was done at Female genital mutilation which used to wrestle with what kind of image to use to demonstrate FGM, but which now shows an anti-FGM poster. A very wide range of actions are regarded as sexual assault and I have no idea what kind of image might be suitable. However, an additonal point against the painting is that it might suggest that "sexual assault" means what is shown, whereas groping might also be an assault. Johnuniq (talk) 00:43, 18 June 2014 (UTC)
Yes, I get the feeling that what you described about "a lovely painting of rape" is what was meant; nonetheless, I view it as a poor argument. The image being a painting makes it no less suitable to be in the article as the lead image or otherwise. And, in fact, as is noted on my user page, Wikipedia readers usually prefer a drawing or a painting of a sexual act than a real-life image of a sexual act. And in the case of sexual assault, I'm of the opinion that a real-life image would be highly distasteful unless it's of a "historical image of sexual assault" context. Furthermore, there is no image of sexual assault that could represent every type of sexual assault that exists (unless it's an image with the terms for all types of sexual assault), just like the current lead image at the Breast article cannot represent all types of breasts. The point of a lead image is to simply give an example of the topic. And the sexual assault image we are debating gives an example of groping, as well as the implication that rape and murder have occurred; yes, it's an image of a time in history long gone, but it does display those aspects of sexual assault. Another point I've been thinking about is if the image were not realistic in some way, then I don't see why it would be "triggering" to a sexual assault victim. Either way, I reiterate that I'm not hung up on keeping the image. Whether we keep that image or not, having some type of appropriate lead image is better than having no lead image at all; it's been reported on somewhere on Wikipedia, I think, that images brighten up an article in a way and make an article more welcoming. I know that we are currently debating whether or not the current lead image is welcoming, but yeah. Flyer22 (talk) 01:18, 18 June 2014 (UTC)


I made a few changes to the wording of this section to eliminate the use of second-person and also convey a more formal tone. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Jeremyburkhart (talkcontribs) 15:47, 31 May 2012 (UTC)

The prevalence in America is all about college victims. Why is there such a limited focus? This section should cover a more general overview of the phenomenon in America rather than focusing on one particular sub population. Keh428 (talk) 00:22, 3 December 2012 (UTC)

Wrong Citations[edit]

Umm the citation number 6 does not work, so if you could please double check that all the websites that you said were valid are really valid so that you can give the right infomation for anyone who could be using it for an essay. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:09, 23 November 2010 (UTC)

Review article published in AAFP[edit]

[6] Doc James (talk · contribs · email) 19:52, 15 June 2011 (UTC)

Gender Nuetrality On Sexual Assault[edit]

Although rare, females have committed sexual assault on male victims; The article (at least as it stands now) barely glosses over this. There needs to be a section specifically focused on this fact; It might read something like “Gender And Sexual Assault” (section Header) “It should be noted, both under law and in general society, that the gender of the victim and that of the perpetrator is not relevant to the commission of a sexual assault and that although males tend to be the majority perpetrators and females tend to be the majority victims, ether sex can fall into either category. In some jurisdiction, however, only males can commit rape and only females can be victims of rape.” (An example would be California’s rape law, Penal Code §261.) Note: I do not consider this a neutral POV issue, but a gender neutrality (basic fairness) issue. As it reads now, an average reader would get the impression that sexual assault is a male-on-female (or adult male on child) phenomena. Wikipedia- Best Source Of Information Since The Weekly World News. (talk) 18:11, 28 July 2011 (UTC)A REDDSON

OR/SYNTH additions of bestiality and female genital mutilation[edit]

I recently received a message on my talk page regarding these additions. I am removing them on the basis of what I have found. Specifically, there is a difference between "sex crimes" and "sexual assault." I have seen no statements which clearly and explicitly state that a sex crime is necessarily a sexual assault, and the material in this article and in the few relevant reference soruces I have seen indicate that these are counted, as anything, only as "sex crimes," not as specifically "sexual assault." It would be a violation of OR and/or SYNTH to say that the two terms are identical. On that basis, I believe it is reasonable to remove the material and hope that it is not restored until and unless it is somehow demonstrated that all sex crimes are sexual assaults, which seems to me very unlikely to happen, and/or specific sources which clearly and explicitly refer to these crimes as "sexual assaults" are produced, and I am on that basis removing the material until these rules are met. John Carter (talk) 19:30, 24 August 2012 (UTC)

I noted on John's talk page that I'm against beastiality being in the article because I'm certain that it is not defined as sexual assault by any law. It is considered a sex crime, as we know, but "sexual assault" is reserved for humans. It would be like including beastiality in the Rape article. However, there are probably reliable sources out there that refer to beastiality as a sexual assualt on animals, even though it's not defined as such by any law. And if you search under the term "zoophilia," which is what "beastiality" redirects to, or "zoosexual," you may find a lot more sources in that regard. The Zoophilia article also addresses the ethics of humans engaging in sexual activity with non-human animals and whether or not the animals can consent to the activity. If any reliable sources define zoophilia as a sexual assault, I am a tad bit open to it being mentioned in the article. But given that it's not usually included in the definition of sexual assault, I don't feel that there should be a section on it. That would be WP:UNDUE WEIGHT.
I also noted on John's talk page to remember that we are talking about sexual assaults. Not just assaults, and consent has everything to do with it. Nothing, by law at least, can be considered a sexual assault if one invites/welcomes it on his or herself and continues to invite/welcome it throughout the encounter, as can be the case with female genital mutilation. With sexual assaults, and maybe even assaults in general, consent is only invalid if the person is too young to consent or mentally incapacitated (meaning mentally challenged to the point where the consent is invalid or drunk/drugged up to the point where the consent is invalid). (talk) 01:12, 25 August 2012 (UTC)

Badly worded lede definition. Suggestion for new.[edit]

The current lede is quite circular: The definition shouldn't include the words being defined. How about something like "Sexual assault refers to forcing an unwilling person to engage in or suggest behavior involving the genitals, typically ranging from grabbing or touching over clothes to forced penetration of the vagina, mouth, or anus. Specific legal jurisdictions and research often use highly technical or detailed definitions of the term."
— James Cantor (talk) 17:46, 20 January 2013 (UTC)

Are women's breast considered genitals? Because grabbing breasts is also sexual assault, minor though. IMHO. Lova Falk talk 19:05, 20 January 2013 (UTC)
My bad. (I started with it in there, but accidentally deleted it when editing other parts out of my draft.) How about: "Sexual assault refers to forcing an unwilling person to engage in or suggest behavior involving the genitals or breasts, typically ranging from grabbing or touching over clothes to forced penetration of the vagina, mouth, or anus. Specific legal jurisdictions and research often use highly technical or detailed definitions of the term."— James Cantor (talk) 19:11, 20 January 2013 (UTC)
Much, much better than it is now! 👍 Like Lova Falk talk 19:17, 20 January 2013 (UTC)

"Category:Medical emergencies"[edit]

Is it correct for this article to be placed in Category:Medical emergencies? I'm not sure if it's accurate to classify a type of assault as a medical emergency, since this more often refers to a specific medical condition, instead of a dangerous situation that threatens a person's physical safety. Jarble (talk) 16:46, 18 March 2013 (UTC)

Frisking abuse[edit]

I would like to add Molested By the TSA to the External Links, or add "Frisking abuse" to Sexual assault#Types. --Ne0 (talk) 03:27, 26 March 2013 (UTC)


assault is the threat of harm not actually hitting shouldn't sexual assault be making somebody think you were gonna rape them not actually rape? is this term inconsistent or did i misunderstand the root? it seems like sexual battery would make more sense. thanks edit- i meant the existence/use of the term(i know its a real thing) not the term's use in the article. just wondering about the crime naming convention that led to it22:05, 7 September 2014 (UTC)~~

You seem to have a misunderstanding of the term "assault". In normal use, it is NOT "the threat of harm". --Orange Mike | Talk 01:58, 8 September 2014 (UTC)
    • ^ [7]
    • ^ Bonnar-Kidd, K.. (2010). Sexual Offender Laws and Prevention of Sexual Violence or Recidivism. American Journal of Public Health, 100(3), 412-9. Retrieved April 4, 2010, from Research Library. (Document ID: 1979013051).