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New FBI Rape Definition Includes Male Victims

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has changed its definition of rape to include male victims. The definition, currently used to report crime statistics in the Uniform Crime Report, shows an important change to recognize male victims.

Advocates for victims of sexual abuse and rape say that the numbers reported by the Uniform Crime Report have previously underreported the number of rapes in this country by not including men as victims. The change reverses an 85-year-old definition of sex crime.

According to the USA Today, the current definition of rape is the "carnal knowledge of a female forcibly and against her will." The new definition is any penetration of another person without the victim's consent. The change will also include rapes where their isn't bodily penetration, but instead object penetration.

The change is "long overdue," according to Attorney General Eric Holder. It will provide greater insight into the number of victims who are abused by same-sex attackers as was the allegedly case with Penn State football coach Jerry Sandusky. Sandusky allegedly engaged in assaults and sex crimes with 10 men and boys in his tenure as assistant football coach.

Source: USA Today, "FBI changes definition of rape to include men as victims," Kevin Johnson, 1/6/2012

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