Based on an analysis of the master files of the FBI's National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS), this bulletin presents data on incidents of statutory rape (sex with a minor) known to law enforcement agencies in 21 States for the years 1996 through 2000.
In addition to the number of such offenses known to law enforcement agencies, data from the NIBRS also provide information on victim and offender attributes as well as law enforcement's response to the incident. In 2000, there was one statutory rape for every three forcible rapes that involved a juvenile victim; 95 percent of the statutory rape victims were female. Almost three of every five victims of statutory rape were age 14 or 15, with relatively equal proportions in each of these ages. Virtually all of the perpetrators of statutory rape against females were males. Ninety-four percent of the perpetrators of statutory rape against boys were female. Eighteen percent of the perpetrators of statutory rape against females were younger than age 18; 70 percent of the perpetrators of statutory rape against boys were age 21 and older, and 45 percent of perpetrators against female victims were 21 years old and older. The median age difference between female offenders and their male victims was 9 years; the median age difference between male offenders and their female victims was 6 years. Three of every 10 statutory rape offenders were boyfriends or girlfriends, and 6 in 10 were acquaintances. No arrest occurred in 42 percent of the incidents, with the probability of arrest decreasing as the victim's age increased. 4 tables
Date Published: August 1, 2005