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Prison Rape?

AiouaAioua Ora OccidensOra OptimaRegistered User regular
edited January 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
I'm starting this off in H/A becuase there's probably a simple answer, but it might need to get moved over to D&D later...

So, people always are talking about how common prison rape is, and I'm just looking for sources backing this up. I have a friend who was in prison for several years, and in his experience rape was extremely rare. Basically, there were simply cameras everywhere, so there weren't any spots to hide and attack people. That, and, there were gay people, so if you wanted to have sex with a dude, there were volunteers.
So if my anecdotal datum doesn't match up with the common wisdom, I must turn to statistics! Was my friends experience just his luck, being in well-managed prisons with progressive populations? Was he just not hearing about what was happening, as he was generally keeping his head down? (He literally spent most of his free time playing D&D and drawing :D) If it helps, it was in the seattle area (so perhaps more accepting of gays there), and in his tenue he stayed in both the barracks style group rooms as well as in the 2 man cells.

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    CabezoneCabezone Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    I would guess it depends entirely on the prison. Prisons in the US have wildly different quality levels.

    Cabezone on
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    Canada_jezusCanada_jezus Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    http://www.spr.org/

    http://www.spr.org/en/fact_sheets.aspx

    And basically every documentary on prisons in america (north or whatever), afrika or russia have retarded amounts of rape in them. Its sensationalized sure, but it exists at a much higher rate than you'd think. Also rape is an under reported crime.

    Also different types of jail etc.

    Canada_jezus on
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    TejsTejs Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    All I know is that 4 out of 5 inmates enjoy a good gang rape.

    Seriously though, it's probably historical. Modern prisons are likely not bastions of violation whereas historically there were probably more incidents in the past systems and institutions. I'd imagine if you want to find sources, you probably just need to look for either major incidents in the past, or landmark legal cases involving a violation that led to increased crackdown. That's where I'd start if I was writing a paper.

    Tejs on
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    Monolithic_DomeMonolithic_Dome Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    It is definitely not historical, and it definitely does vary among prisons

    From Canada_jezus's link
    Sexual assault behind bars is a widespread human rights crisis in prisons and jails across the U.S. According to the best available research, 20 percent of inmates in men’s prisons are sexually abused at some point during their incarceration. The rate for women’s facilities varies dramatically from one prison to another, with one in four inmates being victimized at the worst institutions.

    In a 2007 survey of prisoners across the country, the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) found that 4.5 percent (or 60,500) of the more than 1.3 million inmates held in federal and state prisons had been sexually abused in the previous year alone. A BJS survey in county jails was just as troubling; nearly 25,000 jail detainees reported having been sexually abused in the past six months.

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    AiouaAioua Ora Occidens Ora OptimaRegistered User regular
    edited January 2010
    From Canada_jezus's link
    ...According to the best available research, 20 percent of inmates in men’s prisons are sexually abused at some point during their incarceration.


    Hmm, I take issue with that 20% number, which is from this paper.[warning pdf] They surveyed "1800 men and women in a Midwestern prison system", so it's a great study of that prison system, but JDI doesn't mention that and just says "20 percent of inmates in men’s prisons", which is kind of scummy.

    However, 20% anywhere is rediculous and unacceptable. I guess it really does depend on the place.

    Aioua on
    life's a game that you're bound to lose / like using a hammer to pound in screws
    fuck up once and you break your thumb / if you're happy at all then you're god damn dumb
    that's right we're on a fucked up cruise / God is dead but at least we have booze
    bad things happen, no one knows why / the sun burns out and everyone dies
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    Canada_jezusCanada_jezus Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Take into account, i have no idea if there are a lot of gangs in the midwest, but i know the west coast has a shitload of them. Which will inevitably drive up violence and other unsavory activities.

    Canada_jezus on
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    jeddy leejeddy lee Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Also, I don't think that prisoners would go to gay guys in the sense that "I was going to rape this dude, but now that this gay guy is offering, I'm not gonna!"

    I think a lot of it has to do with owning the victom. It is completely damaging and humiliating them, and it's a dominance thing.

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    SammyFSammyF Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Jack Eddy's largely right. Rape is not a crime about sex; rape is a crime about control. Especially in a penal system where identity and self-determination is largely stripped away from the inmates, a violent, humiliating way of asserting control is going to have a certain unsavory appeal.

    SammyF on
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    KhavallKhavall British ColumbiaRegistered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Yeah saying rape wouldn't happen in prison because there were plenty of gay dudes is like saying rape doesn't happen in the outside world because there are women.

    Khavall on
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    SniperGuySniperGuy SniperGuyGaming Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Also, maybe it's obvious, but no one from the prisons comes out and tries to go "Hey, that doesn't happen." because I mean hey, that's a decent deterrent from robbing that store. A man will put his penis in your anus against your will.

    SniperGuy on
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    ForarForar #432 Toronto, Ontario, CanadaRegistered User regular
    edited January 2010
    SniperGuy wrote: »
    Also, maybe it's obvious, but no one from the prisons comes out and tries to go "Hey, that doesn't happen." because I mean hey, that's a decent deterrent from robbing that store. A man will put his penis in your anus against your will.

    I have doubts on that. Do you have any statistics to back it up?

    It seems like an extension of the death penalty debates, wherein many people seem to frown upon "if you kill/rape/X we will have you put to death" having an arguable effect on murder/rape/X rates. If death isn't a deterrant from comitting horrible crimes, why would sexual violation be any different?

    Well, aside from the trauma and having to live with the event and whatnot, I'm not trying to downplay rape, just saying that it seems hard to believe that one deterrant would be viewed so negatively or as questionably effective, and then suggesting that another potential outcome of incarceration would be more effective than the more severe alternative.

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    SniperGuySniperGuy SniperGuyGaming Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Uh, because stealing from a store isn't a crime that's going to get you put on death row.

    It might, however, put you in a situation where Bob can make you his little girl toy.

    I did not run over any statistics about it, no. But I mean, really? Can you think of a time when a warden has come out and loudly proclaimed that in fact, you'll practically enjoy your time in prison? Because that would be counter productive.

    SniperGuy on
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    HedgethornHedgethorn Associate Professor of Historical Hobby Horses In the Lions' DenRegistered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Even more disturbing is the recent study that found that 12% of those in juvenile facilities have been sexually victimized while there, with the numbers going as high as 30% in some facilities.

    Hedgethorn on
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    The Crowing OneThe Crowing One Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Hedgethorn wrote: »
    Even more disturbing is the recent study that found that 12% of those in juvenile facilities have been sexually victimized while there, with the numbers going as high as 30% in some facilities.

    And what do we actually expect?

    Criminals certainly aren't people.

    Eddy's statement concerning dominance and control is spot on.

    The Crowing One on
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    SeeksSeeks Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Keep in mind that in some places, what you did also has an effect.

    Guy I talked to said that basically, rape wasn't much of a thing unless you were put away for some sex-related crime (any kind of rape, sex with an underage chick, molestation, etc.). In those cases, it was pretty much guaranteed. If you didn't admit to what you did, it was assumed to be a sex crime.

    Seeks on
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    TopweaselTopweasel Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    In a 2007 survey of prisoners across the country, the Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS) found that 4.5 percent (or 60,500) of the more than 1.3 million inmates held in federal and state prisons had been sexually abused in the previous year alone. A BJS survey in county jails was just as troubling; nearly 25,000 jail detainees reported having been sexually abused in the past six months.

    Maybe I am looking at the wrong portion of this, but I would think a 4.5% of the course of a year be a low and rare number. Not only that but do we really know what they consider sexual abuse, so is really 20% of the course of their complete incarceration (which can be 1yr - 20yrs) have at some point been sexually assaulted really that far out of whack. I mean they are certainly higher then RL but then again your confined with thousands of people that can't conform to societal norms in the first place.

    Topweasel on
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    SniperGuySniperGuy SniperGuyGaming Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    The polls getting numbers of abused inmates is low as well likely given that people that got raped are less inclined to actually report it.

    So yeah, it probably happens more than that 4.5.

    Also, I love that it's a survey by the BJS

    SniperGuy on
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    Monolithic_DomeMonolithic_Dome Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Topweasel wrote: »
    Maybe I am looking at the wrong portion of this, but I would think a 4.5% of the course of a year be a low and rare number. Not only that but do we really know what they consider sexual abuse, so is really 20% of the course of their complete incarceration (which can be 1yr - 20yrs) have at some point been sexually assaulted really that far out of whack. I mean they are certainly higher then RL but then again your confined with thousands of people that can't conform to societal norms in the first place.


    If by "higher than real life" you mean "over 100 times higher," then you are correct. 0.3 rapes occur per 1000 people annually in the United States (cite).

    And I'd argue that in a situation where near-perfect surveillance is possible, the rape rate should be lower inside the prison than outside it.

    But that would require that we stop throwing non-violent drug offenders in prison and ditch the societal notion that they deserve it because they are in prison.

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    exmelloexmello Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    societal notion that they deserve it because they are in prison

    I keep half typing up a rant about this, then realize this is not the D&D forums and stop myself.

    exmello on
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    ApexMirageApexMirage Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    And I'd argue that in a situation where near-perfect surveillance is possible, the rape rate should be lower inside the prison than outside it.

    While the theoretical number would be lower due to surveillance, you can't ignore the fact that the ratio of potential rapists to populace is considerably higher, and that their inhibitions as to the penalties are downplayed ("what are they gonna do, put me in jail?")

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    RynaRyna Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    Ever heard about Donny the Punk?

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    ScooterScooter Registered User regular
    edited January 2010
    I remember a while back reading about a group trying to prove prison rape was a myth, and had found no cases of rape in prison!

    Except they were only counting 'attack and hold a guy down' as rape. If a guy, say, made a strong implication about something or other to another, and later on guy 2 happened to be sucking guy 1's dick, well, that was totally voluntary and in no way rape!

    Scooter on
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