Monday, May 24, 2010

How prevalent is false accusation of rape?

Via Amy Alkon and Wendy McElroy

Peter Neufeld and Barry C. Scheck, co-founders of the Innocence Project:
"Every year since 1989, in about 25 percent of the sexual assault cases referred to the FBI where results could be obtained, the primary suspect has been excluded by forensic DNA testing. Specifically, FBI officials report that out of roughly 10,000 sexual assault cases since 1989, about 2,000 tests have been inconclusive, about 2,000 tests have excluded the primary suspect, and about 6,000 have 'matched' or included the primary suspect.
these percentages have remained constant for 7 years, and the National Institute of Justice's informal survey of private laboratories reveals a strikingly similar 26 percent exclusion rate."

I'm shocked. I thought I was more cynical than most about the legitimacy of many sexual assault accusations, yet 25% is a solid bit higher than I expected. My question:


Why do women falsely accuse of this crime? Is it simply about vengefully hurting someone who has hurt them? b/c this is either the easiest, the only, or the most effective avenue of vengeance open to them?


emjay said...

I think a lot of it is revenge but also some are "pay attention to me" cases. What gets more attention than charges of rape?

gcotharn said...

Good observation. And sad.