Campus Sexual Assault Lawyer Highlights the Impact of Sex Crimes

by | Sep 30, 2023 | Assault, Sexual Assault, Sexual Harassment

Sexual assault and similar misconduct have become high profile issues plaguing college campuses across the United States. These cases are difficult due to the nature of the crimes and the devastating lack of reporting and prosecution. At Kherkher Garcia, our campus sexual assault lawyers want students and families to be aware of the risks of campus sexual assault and misconduct.

In the article below, our lawyers shed light on the dangers associated with sexual assault on school campuses. The article highlights the profound impact these crimes have on survivors, the broader educational community, and society as a whole. We will also provide information that can help victims and their families get help.

Statistics on Sex Crimes on College Campuses

Before we dive into the issue of sexual assault on college campuses, let’s take a look at just how prevalent this problem is. Statistics related to sex-related crimes on college campuses are alarming at best. Here are some general statistics about sex crimes on campuses in the U.S.

  • 13% of all students experience rape or sexual assault through physical force, violence, or incapacitation.
  • 4% of female undergraduate students experience rape or sexual assault through physical force, violence, or incapacitation.
  • 8% of male undergraduate students experience rape or sexual assault through physical force, violence, or incapacitation.
  • 7% of female graduate and professional students experience rape or sexual assault through physical force, violence, or incapacitation.
  • 5% of male graduate and professional students experience rape or sexual assault through physical force, violence, or incapacitation.
  • 8% of students have experienced stalking since entering college.
  • 1% of TGQN (transgender, genderqueer, nonconforming) college students have been sexually assaulted.

Other notable statistics:

  • Ninety percent of campus sexual assaults are committed by perpetrators that the survivor knows.
  • Eighty-four percent of female survivors report being sexually assaulted during their first four semesters on campus.
  • Only 12% of college student survivors report the assault to police.
  • Only 2-10% of rapes are false reports, a rate that does not exceed the false reporting rates of other crimes.

It is important to note that these statistics are based on self-reported surveys, and it is likely that the actual number of sexual assaults on college campuses is higher. Many survivors do not report their assaults for a variety of reasons, including fear of retaliation, shame, fear of not being believed, and overall disbelief.

The Dangers of Sexual Assault on School Campuses

Sexual assault on school campuses is a serious and alarming issue that continues to plague educational institutions worldwide. While schools are meant to be safe and nurturing environments for learning, the harsh reality is that they can also become breeding grounds for sexual misconduct. The impact of these events are wide-reaching, far beyond the perpetrator and victim. Consider the following:

Physical and Emotional Trauma

One of the most immediate and devastating dangers of sexual assault on school campuses is the physical and emotional trauma experienced by survivors. Sexual assault can lead to severe injuries, sexually transmitted infections, and unwanted pregnancies. Beyond the physical harm, survivors often suffer from emotional scars that can last a lifetime, including anxiety, depression, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). These traumatic experiences can significantly hinder a student’s ability to focus on their education and achieve their full potential.

Academic Consequences

Sexual assault can have a profound impact on a survivor’s academic performance. Many victims of sexual assault find it difficult to concentrate in class, complete assignments, or attend school regularly. This can result in declining grades, a loss of educational opportunities, and even dropping out of school altogether. The trauma of sexual assault can derail a student’s educational journey, potentially affecting their future career prospects.

Rape Culture

Sexual assault on school campuses can create a culture of rape and sexual violence. When incidents go unaddressed or are treated lightly, it sends a dangerous message that such behavior is acceptable or not taken seriously. This normalization of sexual misconduct not only endangers current students but also perpetuates a cycle of abuse that can persist beyond the school years, affecting wider society.

Underreporting and Fear of Retaliation

One of the most significant obstacles in combating sexual assault on school campuses is the underreporting of incidents. Survivors often fear retaliation or victim-blaming, which can discourage them from coming forward. The fear of not being believed or facing social ostracism can keep survivors silent, allowing perpetrators to go unpunished and posing a constant danger to the school community.

Impact on Mental Health

The mental health repercussions of sexual assault extend beyond survivors to the broader campus community. Students, staff, and faculty members can experience stress, anxiety, and fear as they grapple with the knowledge that sexual assault can happen within their community. This can create a hostile and unsafe environment for everyone involved, hindering the overall wellbeing of the educational institution.

Decreased Trust in Institutions

Sexual assault cases on school campuses often draw attention to the institution’s response and handling of such incidents. When educational institutions fail to take allegations seriously, cover up incidents, or protect perpetrators, it erodes trust in these institutions. This can lead to decreased enrollment, a tarnished reputation, and legal consequences, further endangering the institution’s ability to provide quality education.

Impact on Future Relationships

The trauma of sexual assault can have long-lasting effects on survivors’ ability to form healthy relationships in the future. Survivors may struggle with issues such as trust, intimacy, and self-worth, making it challenging to engage in healthy relationships with friends, family, or romantic partners. The cycle of abuse can continue when survivors, who have not received adequate support and healing, find themselves in unhealthy relationships or become abusers themselves.

How a Campus Sexual Assault Lawyer Can Help

A Campus Sexual Assault Lawyer can play a crucial role in helping survivors of sexual assault navigate the legal complexities and seek justice. Here are some ways that these specialized attorneys can assist survivors:

Advocacy

Campus sexual assault lawyers are experienced in navigating both criminal and civil legal systems. They can guide survivors through the legal processes, helping them understand their rights and options. This includes assisting with filing police reports, pursuing criminal charges against perpetrators, and filing civil lawsuits for damages. Lawyers can also connect survivors with support services, such as counseling, advocacy groups, and medical professionals who specialize in sexual assault trauma. These resources are crucial for emotional healing and well-being.

Some campus sexual assault lawyers also engage in broader advocacy efforts to improve policies and procedures related to sexual assault on college campuses. They may work with institutions to implement better prevention measures and support systems.

Understanding the Law

Title IX is a federal civil rights law in the United States that was enacted in 1972 as part of the Education Amendments. It is perhaps best known for its role in promoting gender equity in educational institutions, particularly in sports programs, but it has a much broader scope. In terms of camps sexual assaults, Title IX is important for the following reasons:

  • Equality in Education: Title IX’s primary objective is to prohibit discrimination on the basis of sex in any educational program or activity that receives federal financial assistance. This includes colleges, universities, K-12 schools, and other educational institutions.
  • Procedural Safeguards: Title IX requires schools to establish procedures for handling complaints related to sex discrimination, including fair investigations, due process for both parties involved, and protection against retaliation for reporting incidents.
  • Protection Against Sexual Harassment and Violence: Title IX has been expanded to address issues of sexual harassment and sexual violence in educational settings. It mandates that schools must promptly and effectively respond to reports of sexual harassment or assault to ensure a safe learning environment.
  • Impacts on Education: Title IX has had a profound impact on education in the United States by promoting gender equity and ensuring that students are protected from sex-based discrimination and harassment. It has played a pivotal role in increasing opportunities for female athletes and addressing issues related to gender-based violence.

Guidance Through the Legal Process

Campus sexual assault lawyers can guide survivors and their families through the legal process – be it criminal, civil, administrative, or all of the above. This guidance includes:

  • Support During Administrative Proceedings: Survivors may need to participate in school disciplinary proceedings, which can be intimidating and confusing. A Campus Sexual Assault Lawyer can provide guidance, help survivors prepare statements, and ensure their rights are protected throughout the process.
  • Evidence Collection and Preservation: Attorneys can help survivors gather and preserve evidence crucial to their case, including witness statements, medical records, text messages, and other forms of documentation. Proper evidence collection can be pivotal in both criminal and civil cases.
  • Protection from Retaliation: Survivors often fear retaliation from perpetrators or backlash from their peers. An attorney can advocate for measures to protect survivors from retaliation and support their safety on campus.
  • Legal Remedies: In civil cases, attorneys can help survivors seek financial compensation for damages related to the assault, including medical expenses, therapy costs, and pain and suffering.

A campus sexual assault lawyer is an essential ally for survivors seeking justice and support after experiencing sexual assault on a college campus.

Contact Campus Sexual Assault Lawyer at No Cost

At Kherkher Garcia, our campus sexual assault lawyers possess the legal expertise and experience necessary to guide you through complex legal processes, advocate for your rights, and help you access the resources you need to heal and seek justice. In addition to providing high quality legal representation, we provide support that empowers survivors to navigate the challenging journey ahead and holding perpetrators accountable for their actions.

If you or someone you know is a victim of campus sexual assault, do not wait to get the legal help you need. Contact Kherkher Garcia as soon as possible to start protecting your rights. Our lawyers have more than three decades of experience handling complex sexual assault cases, and we know what it takes to protect our victims and obtain justice.

Get your no cost consultation by calling us at 713-333-1030, or by completing our confidential contact form.

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Bret Stanley

Bret Stanley

Firm Partner and Trial Lawyer

This article was written and reviewed by Injury Trial Lawyer and Firm Partner Bret Stanley. Bret is a practicing injury lawyer with more than 12 years experience. He has won Millions in Settlements and Verdicts for his clients. Bret’s practice areas have focused on helping clients with rideshare sexual assault, product liability, pharmaceutical device and drug claims, mass tort litigation, catastrophic personal injury litigation, complex insurance litigation, and Jones Act / Maritime Injury litigation.

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