Sexual assault


Sexual assault
Sexual assault
Classification and external resources

Konstantin Makovsky, The Bulgarian martyresses, a painting depicting the atrocities of bashibazouks in Bulgaria during the Russo-Turkish War (1877–1878)
ICD-9 E960.1
MedlinePlus 001955
eMedicine article/806120
MeSH D011902

Sexual assault is an assault of a sexual nature on another person, or any sexual act committed without consent. Although sexual assaults most frequently are by a man on a woman, it may involve any combination of two or more men, women and children.[1]

The term sexual assault is used, in public discourse, as a generic term that is defined as any involuntary sexual act in which a person is threatened, coerced, or forced to engage against their will, or any sexual touching of a person who has not consented. This includes rape (such as forced vaginal, anal or oral penetration), inappropriate touching, forced kissing, child sexual abuse, or the torture of the victim in a sexual manner.[2] [3]

In legal terms, sexual assault is the name of a statutory offence in various jurisdictions, including Canada, England and Wales, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Texas. The legal definition of the crime of sexual assault is determined by each jurisdiction, and these definitions vary considerably and are influenced by local social and cultural attitudes.[citation needed]

Within the United States, about 300,000 women are raped each year and 3.7 million women are subjected to other forms of unwanted sexual activity.[4] About 80,000 American children are sexually abused each year.[4] It has been estimated that one in six American women has been or will be sexually assaulted during her life.[5] Largely because of child and prison rape, approximately ten percent of reported rape victims are male.[6]

Contents

Definition

In the United States the definition of sexual assault varies widely between the individual states. The Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network defines sexual assault as "unwanted sexual contact that stops short of rape or attempted rape. This includes sexual touching and fondling."[7]

The National Center for Victims of Crime states that:[8]

Sexual assault takes many forms including attacks such as rape or attempted rape, as well as any unwanted sexual contact or threats. Usually a sexual assault occurs when someone touches any part of another person's body in a sexual way, even through clothes, without that person's consent.

Types

Rape

Outside of law, the term rape ("an assault by a person involving sexual intercourse with another person without that person's consent") is often used interchangeably with sexual assault,[9][10] a closely related (but in most jurisdictions technically distinct) form of assault typically including rape and other forms of non-consensual sexual activity.[11][12]

Abbey et al. state that female victims are much more likely to be assaulted by an acquaintance (such as a friend or co-worker), a dating partner, an ex-boyfriend or an intimate partner than by a complete stranger.[13] In a study of hospital emergency room treatments for rape, Kaufman et al. state that the male victims as a group sustained more physical trauma, were more likely to have been a victim of multiple assaults from multiple assailants, and were more likely to have been held captive longer.[14]

Attempted rape

Attempted rape is a failed attempt to force sexual intercourse with someone without their consent. Attempted rape under the Criminal Attempts Act 1981 is a 'sexual offence' within section 31(1) of the Criminal Justice Act 1991.[15]

Child sexual abuse

Sexual assaults on children are normally viewed far more seriously than those on an adult. This is because of the innocence of the child victim, and also because of the long-term psychological impact that such assaults have on the child.

Child sexual abuse is a form of child abuse in which an adult or older adolescent abuses a child for sexual stimulation.[16][17] Forms of CSA include asking or pressuring a child to engage in sexual activities (regardless of the outcome), indecent exposure of the genitals to a child, displaying pornography to a child, actual sexual contact against a child, physical contact with the child's genitals, viewing of the child's genitalia without physical contact, or using a child to produce child pornography.[16][18][19]

The effects of child sexual abuse include depression,[20] post-traumatic stress disorder,[21] anxiety,[22] propensity to re-victimization in adulthood,[23] and physical injury to the child, among other problems.[24] Sexual abuse by a family member is a form of incest, is more common than other forms of sexual assault on a child, and can result in more serious and long-term psychological trauma, especially in the case of parental incest.[25]

Approximately 15% to 25% of women and 5% to 15% of men were sexually abused when they were children.[26][27][28][29][30] Most sexual abuse offenders are acquainted with their victims; approximately 30% are relatives of the child, most often brothers, fathers, mothers, sisters and uncles or cousins; around 60% are other acquaintances such as friends of the family, babysitters, or neighbors; strangers are the offenders in approximately 10% of child sexual abuse cases.[26]

Studies have shown that the psychological damage is often particularly severe when sexual assault is committed by parents against children due to the incestuous nature of the assault.[25] Incest between a child or adolescent and a related adult has been identified as the most widespread form of child sexual abuse with a huge capacity for damage to a child.[25] Often, sexual assault on a child is not reported by the child for several reasons:

  • children are too young to recognize their victimization or put it into words
  • they were threatened or bribed by the abuser
  • they feel confused by fearing the abuser but liking the attention
  • they are afraid no one will believe them
  • they blame themselves or believe the abuse is a punishment
  • they feel guilty for consequences to the perpetrator[31]

Elderly sexual assault

Elderly sexual assault is victimization of persons over the age of 60, most of whom suffer from decreased functionality, frailty, and weakness and therefore are reliant on caretakers. Only 30% of people age 65 or older who are victimized report it to the police. The most common assailants are caretakers, adult children, spouses and fellow facility residents. Signs that an elder is being assaulted include increased vaginal tearing, bleeding, bruising, infection, pelvic injury, soft tissue or bone injury. Also, an altered mood might be an indication of sexual assault. These symptoms include extreme agitation, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, withdrawal, panic attacks, STDs, exacerbation of existing illness, sleep disturbences, longer recovery times.[31]

Sexual harassment

Sexual harassment is intimidation, bullying or coercion of a sexual nature, or the unwelcome or inappropriate promise of rewards in exchange for sexual favors.[32] In the United States, sexual harassment is a form of discrimination which violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The legal and social definition of what constitutes sexual harassment differ widely by culture. Sexual harassment includes a wide range of behaviors from seemingly mild transgressions to serious forms of abuse, and some forms of sexual harassment overlap with sexual assault.[33] Sexual Harassment may include leering, pressure for dates, pressing or rubbing against a person, obscene phone calls, bra snapping, wolf-whistles, lip-smacking, indecent exposure, sexual discrimination, displaying explicit materials, sexist jokes, unwanted grabbing, comments about person's body, soliciting sexual services.[31]

Groping

The term "groping" is used to define the touching or fondling of another person in a sexual way (including through clothing), using the hands, without that other person's consent.

Domestic violence

Domestic violence is a crime of power and intimidation. It relates highly to sexual assault. Not only can the abuse be emotional, physical, psychological, and financial, but it can be sexual. Some of the signs of sexual abuse are very similar to those of domestic violence.

Emotional effects

Traumatic events such as rape and sexual assault have, aside from obvious physical traumas, profound long-term psychological effects on all victims including but not limited to children who are assault victims. These include: denial, helplessness, dislike of sex, anger, self-blame, anxiety, shame, nightmares, fear, depression, flashbacks, guilt, rationalization, mood-swings, numbness, promiscuity, loneliness, social anxiety, difficulty trusting oneself or others, difficulty concentrating. Family and friends experience emotional scarring including a strong desire for revenge, a desire to "fix' the problem and/or move on, and a rationalization that "it wasn't that bad".[31]

Prevalence

A United Nations report compiled from government sources showed that more than 250,000 cases of rape or attempted rape were recorded by police annually. The reported data covered 65 countries.[34]

Canada

Sexual assault is defined as sexual contact with another person without that other person's consent. Consent is defined in section 273.1(1) as "the voluntary agreement of the complainant to engage in the sexual activity in question".

Section 265 of the Criminal Code of Canada defines the offenses of assault and sexual assault.

Section 271 criminalizes "Sexual assault", section 272 criminalizes "Sexual assault with a weapon, threats to a third party or causing bodily harm" and section 273 criminalizes "Aggravated sexual assault".

Consent

The absence of consent defines the crime of sexual assault. Section 273.1 (1) defines consent, section 273.1 (2) outlines certain circumstances where "no consent" is obtained, while section 273.1 (3) states that subsection (2) does not limit the circumstances where "no consent" is obtained (i.e. subsection (2) describes some circumstances which deem the act to be non-consensual, but other circumstances, not described in this section, can also deem the act as having been committed without consent). "No consent" to sexual assault is also subject to Section 265 (3), which also outlines several situations where the act is deemed non-consensual. In 2011, the Supreme Court of Canada in R. v. J.A. interpreted the provisions below to find that a person must have an active mind during the sexual activity in order to consent, and that they cannot give consent in advance.[35][36]

  • Meaning of “consent”

273.1 (1) Subject to subsection (2) and subsection 265(3), “consent” means, for the purposes of sections 271, 272 and 273, the voluntary agreement of the complainant to engage in the sexual activity in question.

Where no consent obtained

(2) No consent is obtained, for the purposes of sections 271, 272 and 273, where (a) the agreement is expressed by the words or conduct of a person other than the complainant; (b) the complainant is incapable of consenting to the activity; (c) the accused induces the complainant to engage in the activity by abusing a position of trust, power or authority; (d) the complainant expresses, by words or conduct, a lack of agreement to engage in the activity; or (e) the complainant, having consented to engage in sexual activity, expresses, by words or conduct, a lack of agreement to continue to engage in the activity.

Subsection (2) not limiting

(3) Nothing in subsection (2) shall be construed as limiting the circumstances in which no consent is obtained.

  • Section 265(3)

Consent

(3) For the purposes of this section, no consent is obtained where the complainant submits or does not resist by reason of (a) the application of force to the complainant or to a person other than the complainant; (b) threats or fear of the application of force to the complainant or to a person other than the complainant; (c) fraud; or (d) the exercise of authority.

In accordance with 265 (4) an accused may use the defense that he believed that the complainant consented, but such a defence may be used only when "a judge, if satisfied that there is sufficient evidence and that, if believed by the jury, the evidence would constitute a defence, shall instruct the jury when reviewing all the evidence relating to the determination of the honesty of the accused's belief, to consider the presence or absence of reasonable grounds for that belief"; furthermore according to section 273.2(b) the accused must show that he took reasonable steps in order to ascertain the complainant's consent, also 273.2(a) states that if the accused's belief steams from self-induced intoxication, or recklessness or wilful blindness than such belief is not a defense.[35]

  • 265 (4)

Accused’s belief as to consent

(4) Where an accused alleges that he believed that the complainant consented to the conduct that is the subject-matter of the charge, a judge, if satisfied that there is sufficient evidence and that, if believed by the jury, the evidence would constitute a defence, shall instruct the jury, when reviewing all the evidence relating to the determination of the honesty of the accused’s belief, to consider the presence or absence of reasonable grounds for that belief.

  • Where belief in consent not a defence

273.2 It is not a defence to a charge under section 271, 272 or 273 that the accused believed that the complainant consented to the activity that forms the subject-matter of the charge, where (a) the accused’s belief arose from the accused’s

(i) self-induced intoxication, or

(ii) recklessness or wilful blindness; or (b) the accused did not take reasonable steps, in the circumstances known to the accused at the time, to ascertain that the complainant was consenting.

South Africa

The Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act created the offence of sexual assault, replacing a common-law offence of indecent assault. "Sexual assault" is defined as the unlawful and intentional sexual violation of another person without their consent. The act's definition of "sexual violation" incorporates a number of sexual acts, including any genital contact that does not amount to penetration as well as any contact with the mouth designed to cause sexual arousal. Non-consensual acts that involve actual penetration are rape rather than sexual assault.

Unlawfully and intentionally inspiring the belief in another person that they will be sexually violated also amounts to sexual assault. The act also created the offences of "compelled sexual assault", when a person forces a second person to commit an act of sexual violation with a third person; and "compelled self-sexual assault", when a person forces another person to masturbate or commit various other sexual acts on himself or herself.[37]

United Kingdom

England and Wales

Sexual assault is a statutory offence in England and Wales. It is created by section 3 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003 which defines "sexual assault" as when a person (A)

  1. intentionally touches another person (B),
  2. the touching is sexual,
  3. B does not consent to the touching, and
  4. A does not reasonably believe that B consents.

Northern Ireland

Sexual assault is a statutory offence. It is created by article 7 of the Sexual Offences (Northern Ireland) Order 2008. Sexual assault is defined as follows:[38]

Sexual assault
(1) A person (A) commits an offence if—
(a) he intentionally touches another person (B),
(b) the touching is sexual,
(c) B does not consent to the touching, and
(d) A does not reasonably believe that B consents.

Scotland

Sexual assault is a statutory offence. It is created by section 3 of the Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act 2009. Sexual assault is defined as follows:[39]

Sexual assault
(1) If a person (“A”)—
(a) without another person (“B”) consenting, and
(b) without any reasonable belief that B consents,
does any of the things mentioned in subsection (2), then A commits an offence, to be known as the offence of sexual assault.
(2) Those things are, that A—
(a) penetrates sexually, by any means and to any extent, either intending to do so or reckless as to whether there is penetration, the vagina, anus or mouth of B,
(b) intentionally or recklessly touches B sexually,
(c) engages in any other form of sexual activity in which A, intentionally or recklessly, has physical contact (whether bodily contact or contact by means of an implement and whether or not through clothing) with B,
(d) intentionally or recklessly ejaculates semen onto B,
(e) intentionally or recklessly emits urine or saliva onto B sexually.

United States

Texas

Penal Code, Sec. 22.011.(a) creates the offence of sexual assault. It reads:

(a) A person commits an offense if the person:
(1) intentionally or knowingly:
(A) causes the penetration of the anus or sexual organ of another person by any means, without that person's consent;
(B) causes the penetration of the mouth of another person by the sexual organ of the actor, without that person's consent; or
(C) causes the sexual organ of another person, without that person's consent, to contact or penetrate the mouth, anus, or sexual organ of another person, including the actor; or
(2) intentionally or knowingly:
(A) causes the penetration of the anus or sexual organ of a child by any means;
(B) causes the penetration of the mouth of a child by the sexual organ of the actor;
(C) causes the sexual organ of a child to contact or penetrate the mouth, anus, or sexual organ of another person, including the actor;
(D) causes the anus of a child to contact the mouth, anus, or sexual organ of another person, including the actor; or
(E) causes the mouth of a child to contact the anus or sexual organ of another person, including the actor.[40]

See also

References

  1. ^ Chapter 6: Female Sex Offenders, All about Female Offenders, by Katherine Ramsland.
  2. ^ Frequently Asked Questions About Women's Health: Sexual Assault, The National Women's Health Information Center, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
  3. ^ Assault, Black's Law Dictionary, 8th Edition. See also Ibbs v The Queen, High Court of Australia, 61 ALJR 525, 1987 WL 714908 (sexual assault defined as sexual penetration without consent); Sexual Offences Act 2003 Chapter 42 s 3 Sexual assault (United Kingdom), (sexual assault defined as sexual contact without consent), and Chase v. R. 1987 CarswellNB 25 (Supreme Court of Canada) (sexual assault defined as force without consent of a sexual nature)
  4. ^ a b Bonnar-Kidd, K. (2010). "Sexual Offender Laws and Prevention of Sexual Violence or Recidivism". American Journal of Public Health 100 (3): 412–9. doi:10.2105/AJPH.2008.153254. PMID 20075329. 
  5. ^ Patricia Tjaden and Nancy Thoennes (1998). "Prevalence, Incidence and Consequences of Violence Against Women Survey". National Institute of Justice & Centers for Disease Control & Prevention. http://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles/172837.pdf. 
  6. ^ cf. U.S. Department of Justice. 2003 National Crime Victimization Survey. 2003.
  7. ^ "Was I Raped?". Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network. http://www.rainn.org/get-information/types-of-sexual-assault/was-it-rape. Retrieved 18 January 2010. 
  8. ^ http://www.ncvc.org/ncvc/main.aspx?dbName=DocumentViewer&DocumentID=32369#1
  9. ^ Roberts, Albert R.; Ann Wolbert Bergess; CHERYL REGEHR (2009). Victimology: Theories and Applications. Sudbury, Mass: Jones & Bartlett Publishers. p. 228. ISBN 978-0-7637-7210-9. http://books.google.com/?id=erFiYbLL9McC&pg=PA225&dq=definition+of+rape&q=definition%20of%20rape. 
  10. ^ Krantz G, Garcia-Moreno C (October 2005). "Violence against women". J Epidemiol Community Health 59 (10): 818–21. doi:10.1136/jech.2004.022756. PMC 1732916. PMID 16166351. http://www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?tool=pmcentrez&artid=1732916. 
  11. ^ "Was I Raped?". Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network. http://www.rainn.org/get-information/types-of-sexual-assault/was-it-rape. Retrieved 18 January 2010. 
  12. ^ "Sapphire". Metropolitan Police Service. http://www.met.police.uk/sapphire/. Retrieved 18 January 2010. 
  13. ^ Abbey, A., BeShears, R., Clinton-Sherrod, A. M., & McAuslan, P. (2004). Psychology of Women Quarterly, 28, 323-332."Similarities and differences in women's sexual assault experiences based on tactics used by the perpetrator". Accessed 9 July 2008.
  14. ^ Kaufman, A; P Divasto, R Jackson, D Voorhees, J Christy (1980). "Male rape victims: noninstitutionalized assault". American Journal of Psychiatry 1980 (137): 221–223. PMID 7352580. http://ajp.psychiatryonline.org/cgi/content/abstract/137/2/221. Retrieved 2008-11-06. 
  15. ^ YING HUI TAN, Barrister (Tuesday, 12 January 1993). "Law Report: Attempted rape came within definition of 'sexual offence': Regina v Robinson - Court of Appeal (Criminal Divisional) (Lord Taylor of Gosforth, Lord Chief Justice, Mr Justice Potts and Mr Justice Judge), 27 November 1992". The Independent (London). http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/law-report-attempted-rape-came-within-definition-of-sexual-offence-regina-v-robinson--court-of-appeal-criminal-divisional-lord-taylor-of-gosforth-lord-chief-justice-mr-justice-potts-and-mr-justice-judge-27-november-1992-1478119.html. Retrieved 27 October 2010. 
  16. ^ a b "Child Sexual Abuse". Medline Plus. U.S. National Library of Medicine,. 2008-04-02. http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/childsexualabuse.html. 
  17. ^ Committee on Professional Practice and Standards (COPPS), Board of Professional Affairs (BPA), American Psychological Association (APA); Catherine Acuff, Ph.D.; Steven Bisbing, Ph.D.; Michael Gottlieb, Ph.D.; Lisa Grossman, Ph.D.; Jody Porter, Ph.D.; Richard Reichbart, Ph.D.; Steven Sparta, Ph.D.; and C. Eugene Walker, Ph.D (August 1999). "Guidelines for Psychological Evaluations in Child Protection Matters". American Psychologist 54 (8): 586–593. doi:10.1037/0003-066X.54.8.586. PMID 10453704. http://www.apa.org/practice/childprotection.html. Retrieved 2008-05-07. Lay summary – APA PsycNET (2008-05-07). "Abuse, sexual (child): generally defined as contacts between a child and an adult or other person significantly older or in a position of power or control over the child, where the child is being used for sexual stimulation of the adult or other person." 
  18. ^ Martin, J.; Anderson, J.; Romans, S.; Mullen, P; O'Shea, M (1993). "Asking about child sexual abuse: methodological implications of a two-stage survey". Child Abuse and Neglect 17 (3): 383–392. doi:10.1016/0145-2134(93)90061-9. PMID 8330225. 
  19. ^ Child sexual abuse definition from the NSPCC
  20. ^ Roosa M.W., Reinholtz C., Angelini P.J. (1999). "The relation of child sexual abuse and depression in young women: comparisons across four ethnic groups". Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 27 (1): 65–76. PMID 10197407. http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0902/is_1_27/ai_54422556/print. 
  21. ^ Widom C.S. (1999). "Post-traumatic stress disorder in abused and neglected children grown up," American Journal of Psychiatry; 156(8):1223-1229.
  22. ^ Levitan, R. D., N. A. Rector, Sheldon, T., & Goering, P. (2003). "Childhood adversities associated with major depression and/or anxiety disorders in a community sample of Ontario: Issues of co-morbidity and specificity," Depression & Anxiety; 17, 34-42.
  23. ^ Messman-Moore, Terri L.; Long, Patricia J. (2000). "Child Sexual Abuse and Revictimization in the Form of Adult Sexual Abuse, Adult Physical Abuse, and Adult Psychological Maltreatment". 15 Journal of Interpersonal Violence 489: 2000. doi:10.1177/088626000015005003. http://jiv.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/15/5/489. 
  24. ^ Dinwiddie S, Heath AC, Dunne MP, Bucholz KK, Madden PA, Slutske WS, Bierut LJ, Statham DB et al. (2000). "Early sexual abuse and lifetime psychopathology: a co-twin-control study". Psychological Medicine 30 (1): 41–52. doi:10.1017/S0033291799001373. PMID 10722174. http://journals.cambridge.org/action/displayAbstract?fromPage=online&aid=26191. 
  25. ^ a b c Courtois, Christine A. (1988). Healing the Incest Wound: Adult Survivors in Therapy. W. W. Norton & Company. p. 208. ISBN 0393313565. 
  26. ^ a b Julia Whealin, Ph.D. (2007-05-22). "Child Sexual Abuse". National Center for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, US Department of Veterans Affairs. http://www.ptsd.va.gov/public/pages/child-sexual-abuse.asp. 
  27. ^ David Finkelhor (summer/fall 1994). "Current Information on the Scope and Nature of Child Sexual Abuse" (PDF). The Future of Children (1994) 4(2): 31-53. http://www.unh.edu/ccrc/pdf/VS75.pdf. 
  28. ^ Crimes against Children Research Center
  29. ^ Family Research Laboratory
  30. ^ Kevin M. Gorey and Donald R. Leslie (April 1997). "The prevalence of child sexual abuse: Integrative review adjustment for potential response and measurement biases". Child Abuse & Neglect (Elsevier Science Ltd.) 21 (4): 391–398. doi:10.1016/S0145-2134(96)00180-9. PMID 9134267. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6V7N-3SWVJJ8-6&_user=10&_rdoc=1&_fmt=&_orig=search&_sort=d&view=c&_acct=C000050221&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=10&md5=3bf4125ab05f663f306a1ca792f43398. 
  31. ^ a b c d Pennsylvania Coalition Against Rape http://www.pcar.org/about-sexual-violence/stats?cat=Child+Sexual+Abuse
  32. ^ Paludi, Michele Antoinette; Barickman, (1991). Academic and Workplace Sexual Harassment. SUNY Press. pp. 2–5. ISBN 0791408299. 
  33. ^ Dziech et al. 1990, Boland 2002
  34. ^ The Eighth United Nations Survey on Crime Trends and the Operations of Criminal Justice Systems (2001 - 2002) - Table 02.08 Total recorded rapes
  35. ^ a b Criminal Code of Canada
  36. ^ Mike Blanchfield (27 May 2011). "Woman can’t consent to sex while unconscious, Supreme Court rules". The Toronto Star. http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/998055--woman-can-t-consent-to-sex-while-unconscious-supreme-court-rules?bn=1. Retrieved 27 May 2011. 
  37. ^ Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Act, No. 32 of 2007, sections 1–7.
  38. ^ "The Sexual Offences (Northern Ireland) Order 2008". Legislation.gov.uk. 2011-05-26. http://www.legislation.gov.uk/nisi/2008/1769/article/7. Retrieved 2011-08-01. 
  39. ^ "Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act 2009". Legislation.gov.uk. 2011-05-26. http://www.legislation.gov.uk/asp/2009/9/section/3. Retrieved 2011-08-01. 
  40. ^ "PENAL CODE CHAPTER 22. ASSAULTIVE OFFENSES". Statutes.legis.state.tx.us. http://www.statutes.legis.state.tx.us/Docs/PE/htm/PE.22.htm#22.011. Retrieved 2011-08-01. 

Further reading

  • Wishart, G.D. (2003). "The Sexual Abuse of People with Learning Difficulties: Do We Need A Social Model Approach To Vulnerability?", Journal of Adult Protection, Volume 5 (Issue 3).

External links

Sexual Abuse and Assault at the Open Directory Project


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • sexual assault — see assault Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996. sexual assault …   Law dictionary

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  • sexual assault — noun a statutory offense that provides that it is a crime to knowingly cause another person to engage in an unwanted sexual act by force or threat most states have replaced the common law definition of rape with statutes defining sexual assault • …   Useful english dictionary

  • sexual assault —    obsolete    an unsuccessful attempt at rape    Nowadays no longer a euphemism but:     Sexual assault is the euphemism for the rape that fails... Sexual assault depended on the time and place. (Pearsall, 1969, writing about 19th century usage) …   How not to say what you mean: A dictionary of euphemisms

  • sexual assault — sexual as·sault ə sȯlt n illegal sexual contact that usu. 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… …   Medical dictionary

  • sexual assault — Synonyms and related words: abuse, betrayal, criminal assault, debauchment, defilement, defloration, deflowering, deflowerment, despoilment, devirgination, priapism, rape, ravage, ravishment, seducement, seduction, sexual possession, taking,… …   Moby Thesaurus

  • sexual assault — sex′ual assault′ n. law indecent assault …   From formal English to slang

  • sexual assault — The indecent conduct of a man toward a woman or child or of a man toward another man, accompanied by the threat or danger of physical suffering or injury or inducing fear, shame, humiliation, and mental anguish. 6 Am J2d Asslt & B § 24. The act… …   Ballentine's law dictionary

  • sexual assault — performing a sexual act with a person without their prior consent (sexual offense), assaulting someone sexually …   English contemporary dictionary

  • sexual assault — /sɛkʃuəl əˈsɒlt/ (say sekshoohuhl uh solt) noun 1. sexual activity inflicted on a person without their consent. 2. (in some jurisdictions) a statutory crime replacing rape, divided into categories according to the degree of violence accompanying… …   Australian English dictionary


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