Friday, September 21, 2007
Don't Be a Victim: Rape
Many people think rapes are committed by strangers, but the crime can happen when you're on a date. How to avoid becoming a target in tonight's Don't be a Victim.
WSVN -- It's women's worst nightmare.
Victim: "Held me down, stripped me naked and raped me."
Haunting testimony of a teenager face to face with her rapist, a man she claims took her to his apartment when she was only 14 and raped her.
Officer Frank Jackson: "Every two and half minutes, somewhere in the United States of America, their is a women out there that is being sexually assaulted."
Officer Frank Jackson with the Coral Gables Police Department says rape is a crime of power, and, in the case of date rapes, the aggressor feels it is their right to victimize.
Officer Frank Jackson: "There is some sense of entitlement. They have taken you out and bought you some drinks, and they feel that, 'Hey, I've done this and now is time for you to do something for me.'"
Officer Jackson says be on the alert if a man gets possessive and demanding, and keep in mind that there are steps that you can take to protect yourself.
First, use the buddy system.
Officer Frank Jackson: "We suggest, A) that you do not go out alone."
If you do go alone, have a plan.
Officer Frank Jackson: "Have an additional set of money that will cover your cab fare."
Or set up a back up ride home.
Officer Frank Jackson: "Have your parents, have a friend, have someone who has a vehicle pick you up. Have them come get you."
If you're dating someone new, take your own car.
Officer Frank Jackson: "The 80 percent of rapes happen in a vehicle, going from the location to the person's home. You can avoid that by simply not getting in the car."
Also, if you're at a bar, don't leave your drink unattended because some offenders can slip a drug in your cocktail.
Officer Frank Jackson: "Our suggestion is to purchase the drink yourself. Watch the bartender make your drink. If you have a drink, hold on to your drink."
Finally, take action if your date starts to get aggressive.
Officer Frank Jackson: "If this individual is grabbing your arm and is trying to take you to the back door or to the alleyway out to his car."
Officer Frank Jackson:"Yell, 'No, you are not my boyfriend! No, you are not my husband!' It's very short, but it's very clear."
If not, witnesses might just think it's just a lover's quarrel and not intervene.
Officer Frank Jackson: "Once you get to that alley, there is a good chance you are not coming back, and, if you are coming back, you are coming back as a victim."
Tom Haynes: "Remember be alert, in control and follow your instincts. This can ultimately safe you from a possible nightmare."