Rape in the 21st Century: Old Patterns, New Behaviours and Emerging Trends, 2000-2002


Abstract copyright UK Data Service and data collection copyright owner.

Home Office statistics show a continuing decline in the rape conviction rate over the last three decades, with the most recent figures at an all time low of just over 5 per cent. A number of reforms have been put in place but are yet to deliver the hoped for outcomes. Attrition is a complex, multi-factorial process, meaning that successful policy and practice interventions must be informed by analysis of the issues operating at multiple levels of the criminal justice process. Rape in the 21st Century: Old Patterns, New Behaviours and Emerging Trends, 2000-2002 investigated whether particular combinations of factors might be associated with being targeted for sexual assault, as well as specific layers of attrition, including victimisation/targeting, reporting to the police and case outcomes. Using regression analysis, whether and how explicitly stereotypical notions about rape are predictive of attrition was also explored. The project was based on an existing dataset of 3,527 cases reported to three sexual assault referral centres (SARCs) and three police comparison sites without access to a SARC between late 2000 and end 2002. Stereotypical views about rape were found to affect decision making particularly at the earliest stages of the process, namely reporting and the police investigation, although they were less influential than anticipated for the small proportion of cases that reached court. The findings also suggest that victim vulnerabilities play a crucial role in attrition, particularly where: victims are aged under 18; the rape takes place in the context of domestic violence; the rape is alcohol related; and mental health issues are present. Making previous allegations also appears to be significant. These factors influence not only decisions by complainants to withdraw allegations but also how police conduct the investigation.

Main Topics:

The main topics include:demographics of the rape victim and rapistcircumstances around the rapecircumstances around the reporting of the rape

Purposive selection/case studies

Compilation or synthesis of existing material

The dataset is principally derived from an earlier dataset collated for the Home Office Crime Reduc

DOI http://doi.org/10.5255/UKDA-SN-5827-1
Metadata Access https://datacatalogue.cessda.eu/oai-pmh/v0/oai?verb=GetRecord&metadataPrefix=oai_ddi25&identifier=142fe4690abb34da0fe76b4d5001f62c792f9aae56202afb11cf3d4327612639
Creator Lovett, J., London Metropolitan University, Child and Women Abuse Studies Unit; Kelly, L., Polytechnic of North London, Child Abuse Studies Unit
Publisher UK Data Service
Publication Year 2008
Funding Reference Economic and Social Research Council
Rights London Metropolitan University. Child and Women Abuse Studies Unit.; <p>The Data Collection is available to UK Data Service registered users subject to the <a href="https://ukdataservice.ac.uk/app/uploads/cd137-enduserlicence.pdf" target="_blank">End User Licence Agreement</a>.</p><p>Use of the data requires approval from the data owner or their nominee.</p>
OpenAccess true
Language English
Resource Type Numeric
Discipline Economics; Jurisprudence; Law; Social and Behavioural Sciences
Spatial Coverage Greater London; Greater Manchester; Northumberland; West Yorkshire; England