Although females of all ages are raped, more than 50% of U. S. female rape victims reported that their first rape occurred before they were 18 years old, and 22% reported that their first rape occurred before they were 12 (see I Figure 17.1). Women ages 16 to 24 are the most frequent victims of reported rape in the United States (U. S. Department of Justice, 2003). Being raped before the age of 18 greatly increases the chances that a woman will be raped again (Nishith et al., 2000; Tjaden & Thoennes, 1998). The younger the age of the rape victim, the more likely it is that the perpetrator is a rela­tive or an acquaintance (U. S. Department of Justice, 2003). Research also

indicates that women who were victims of childhood sexual abuse are at increased risk for adult sexual revictimization by rapists (Reese-Weber & Smith, 2011).

Women involved in physically abusive relationships are especially vulnerable to being raped by their partners (Sormanti & Shibusawa, 2008). Evidence indicates that battered female victims of intimate partner violence (IPV) may be raped by their part­ners as frequently as several times per month (Sormanti & Shibusawa, 2008).

As noted earlier, the frequency of reported rape varies by culture. Asian and Pacific Islander women report being raped significantly less often than do White and African American women, Hispanic women report being raped less often than non-Hispanic women, and Native American and Alaska Native women report a much higher fre­quency of rape than any other group (Bryan, 2011; Tjaden & Thoennes, 1998). Recently published federal data reveal that one third of Native American women will be raped in their lifetimes (Bryan, 2011). Women who live in poverty are more frequent victims of all types of crimes including rape.