Lansing, MI – April 7, 2017 – Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette today recognized April as Sexual Assault Awareness and Prevention Month and stressed the continued need for support and justice for victims of sexual assault.
“We must continue to shine light on the crime of sexual assault during the month of April and beyond,” said Schuette. “Together we can change the culture and help put a stop to sexual violence and assault. By educating ourselves and those around us on ways to prevent it and speak up if we see something that should not be happening then together we can make a difference.”
As Attorney General, Schuette actively seeks justice for victims of sexual assault. Along with the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office, the Michigan State Police and the Detroit Police Department are investigating and prosecuting cases arising from the testing of sexual assault kits found in Wayne County in 2009. The Michigan State Police completed testing of the backlogged Detroit sexual assault kits in September of 2015.
In May of 2016, the Department of Attorney General secured their first conviction from the testing of those abandoned kits.
The Department of Attorney General also collected and tested over 1,000 untested sexual assault kits from around the state. Most kits were untested due to a confession or a victim knowing their attacker. However, by testing these kits could possibly aid in connecting someone to another unsolved case.
Facts about Sexual Assault
Sexual assault is any type of forced or coerced sexual contact or behavior that happens without consent. Sexual assault includes rape and attempted rape, child molestation, and sexual harassment or threats.
- Sexual violence happens to people of all ages, races, genders, sexual orientations, religions, abilities, professions, incomes, and ethnicities. It happens every day in our communities, schools, and workplaces.
- It is common to think sexual assault only affects women but it can affect men and women of all ages.
- About 85% of sexual assaults are committed by someone the victim knows – a friend, acquaintance, or partner.
- One out of four women and one out of 10 men will be sexually assaulted in their lifetime.
- 79% of female victims of rape report that they were first raped before age 25.
- 28% of male victims of rape report that they were first raped at age 10 or younger.
Resources for Victims of Sexual Assault
Michigan victims of sexual violence are encouraged to call the national sexual assault hotline toll-free, 800-656-HOPE. All calls are confidential, and will be answered by a local counseling center affiliated with the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network.
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