forcible rape (UCR) | Definition

Doc's CJ Glossary by Adam J. McKee
Course: Introduction

Forcible Rape is “The carnal knowledge of a female forcibly and against her will. Attempts or assaults to commit rape by force or threat of force are also included; however, statutory rape (without force) and other sex offenses are excluded.”

Source: The FBI’s Uniform Crime Reports

Forcible rape is a serious criminal offense that involves the non-consensual sexual penetration of an individual by force or threat of force. The Uniform Crime Reports (UCR) Program, which is administered by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), defines forcible rape as the carnal knowledge of a person, forcibly and/or against that person’s will.

Forcible rape is a form of sexual violence and is considered to be one of the most serious and violent crimes that can be committed. The act of rape involves not only a physical violation but also a violation of an individual’s autonomy and sense of self. The trauma of rape can have long-lasting psychological effects on victims, including post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, anxiety, and difficulty in forming intimate relationships.

The UCR Program collects data on forcible rape offenses from law enforcement agencies across the United States. The program distinguishes between two types of forcible rape: completed rape and attempted rape. Completed rape involves the successful sexual penetration of an individual by force or threat of force, while attempted rape involves an unsuccessful attempt to commit rape.

The UCR Program also collects data on the relationship between the victim and the offender in forcible rape cases. This includes whether the victim knew the offender or if the rape was committed by a stranger. Additionally, the UCR Program collects data on the use of weapons during the offense and whether the rape occurred in a public or private location.

To prevent and combat forcible rape, law enforcement agencies and policymakers have developed a variety of strategies and programs. These include increased community policing efforts, sexual assault prevention programs, and public education campaigns about the dangers of sexual violence. Law enforcement agencies also work closely with prosecutors and victim advocates to ensure that offenders are held accountable for their crimes and that victims receive the support they need.

In recent years, there has been growing recognition of the importance of addressing the societal factors that contribute to sexual violence, including gender inequality, cultural attitudes toward sex and consent, and the normalization of violence in media and popular culture. Advocates and policymakers have called for increased investment in education and prevention programs aimed at changing societal attitudes toward sexual violence and promoting healthy and respectful relationships.

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Last Modified: 04/05/2023


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