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Study finds campus rapists are repeat offenders

If you watch any crime show, you know that criminals "evolve," meaning that they work themselves up to ever greater degrees of criminality. It means that criminals get more comfortable committing more heinous acts, the more crimes they commit. A study published in JAMA Pediatrics found that 25 percent of self-admitted sexual assaulters were repeat offenders. This post will go over these findings.

The debate over serial rapists, how often they offend, and the ratio to which they offend (about infrequent or first-time offenders) has been a hot topic among researchers. Studies peg the ratio of serial rapists between 25 and up to 63 percent. The number of repeat offenders is critical because it informs how universities should investigate and respond to these cases. If repeat offenders are common, schools may rely on history and past allegations more during their investigations.

Many universities receive multiple complaints of repeat offenders and fail to take disciplinary or protective action to prevent future harm. That inaction is the basis for numerous lawsuits against Stanford, Indiana University, Kansas State, and other schools. It seems likely that many schools will enact more stringent policies to investigate and take proactive action against possible rapists.

As this article and study illustrate, campus sexual assaults are on everyone's mind. It is critical that your child carefully proceeds through college. Many of these allegations are true, some are poorly understood, and very few are overblown or outright lies (e.g. the Duke case). Unfortunately, the recent focus on these cases means that police or prosecutors might pursue a case that has little or no merit because of the political points they might score. A lawyer can ensure that your child receives the same protections as anyone else.

Source: The New York Times, "When Campus Rapists Are Repeat Offenders," Stephanie Saul, January 24, 2017

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