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Stranger rape refers to rape perpetrated by an individual unknown to the victim. Rape is typically legally defined as a particular form of sexual assault involving sexual penetration without consent. Rape involves any level or duration of penetration orally by a perpetrator’s genitalia, or vaginally or anally by an object or body part of the perpetrator. A minority of sexual assault incidents are committed by a stranger. The majority of stranger rape incidents are committed by men. This entry describes characteristics of stranger rape among men and women as well as risk factors for perpetration and outcomes of victimization relevant to gender and psychology.

Rates and Characteristics

Due to differences in definitions and assessments of rape, variability in research design and samples, and barriers to victims’ disclosure ...

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