A pregnant woman who has been assaulted or threatened by a stranger is more likely to be raped, a new study shows.
A new study by researchers at Duke University found that a pregnant women who was raped in the past year was much more likely than one who had not been raped to be sexually assaulted in the future.
The study found that among 2,500 women who had been raped, the more than 50 percent who reported being raped in one year had more than twice the rate of sexual assaults committed by strangers.
“The probability of being raped increases with the severity of the assault, the frequency of the attack, and the gender of the perpetrator,” said study co-author Dr. Emily M. Krantz.
Krantz said the study’s findings were important as they may provide insights into the prevalence of sexual assault and rape among women in the United States.
“These results are consistent with previous research that found the prevalence and rates of rape among the U.S. population are higher than the national average,” she said.
The researchers conducted the study in conjunction with the Center for Rape Culture, which provides resources and support to victims of rape.
Kramer said she is glad the study has been published and that she is hopeful it can help to decrease the number of rape cases.
“I hope that it is going to make a difference, because it’s a very complex issue and there is so much that we do not know about it,” she told ABC News.
“We have no idea about the extent to which people are reluctant to report rape, the rate at which rape is happening, how many rapes are reported, what happens when someone reports it, and what the impact is,” Kranty said.
“In the long run, it’s going to have a huge impact on the rate and the impact on what happens, and that’s where I hope we can make some changes.”