The claim that women lie about rape can pop up anywhere—a court of law or a casual neighborhood gathering. Having something specific to say about false reporting can contribute to dispelling rape myths. National Sexual Violence Research Center False Reporting has a helpful overview.
- The majority of sexual assaults are never reported to the police.
- False reporting is estimated to be between 2 and 10 percent of cases that are reported.
- Rates of false reporting are often exaggerated because the definitions of what constitutes evidence is inconsistently defined or reflect a limited understanding of sexual assault.
- Misconceptions about false reporting negatively affect victims, contributing to why the majority of sexual assaults are never reported.
- To provide improved support for victims of sexual violence, law enforcement and service providers need an in depth understanding of sexual violence and to be consistent in their definitions, policies, and procedures.