NYPD Captain Suggests ‘True Stranger Rapes’ are More Serious than Others

Jennifer Gentile Long, the CEO of AEquitas, a group that advises prosecutors in sex crime cases, noted that research consistently shows that the overwhelming majority of sexual assaults are perpetrated by someone the victim has met. “Very few rapes are by strangers dragging people off the streets,” she said. “One of the best weapons a rapist has is to get a victim in a position where they may be trusting, feeling like they know this person.” She added that many serial rapists commit assaults against both strangers and acquaintances. Recent movements to test large backlogs of rape kits have found many serial rapists that were identified to police in the past but allowed to go free because the accuser was an acquaintance, and her report was dismissed or minimized. “If you’re missing those cases where people know each other, it’s problematic for capturing serial rapists” who frequently target strangers.